Features to consider while buying a Microwave
A microwave is much more than just a reheating device. It’s a multi-tasker that can cook, bake and defrost, suiting all your needs. Mostly people believe that the microwave is not suitable for Indian cooking which calls for a fair amount of deep frying. But in reality, microwave cooking can cut down the amount of oil needed and yet provide tasty results. In fact most Indian recipes can be adapted to the microwave, making some difficult tasks easy.
With so many models and brands to choose from it’s a tedious task to pick one. Here are a few features to consider while buying microwave ovens:
Power rating: Generally microwaves have a power rating between 600 to 1,500 watts. More watts mean more heat, while lower power means longer cooking time. You can opt for higher power, if you cook larger quantities of food.
Automatic sensors: The automatic sensor determines if the food is cooked by measuring the steam (or humidity) in the oven. The oven shuts off automatically when the food is done.
Control panel: Though exact cooking timings can be best set by feather touch & electronic panels, they need to be handled with care. While mechanical controls are good for heavy or rough usage. The benefit is that you can alter the settings without interrupting the cooking & they are also the easiest to repair.
Short-cut keys: Most microwaves have auto menus for cooking specific food items, such as popcorn or soup. These are useful as they prompt you to take the next step or add more ingredients. They also choose the power level and cooking time automatically.
Multi-stage cooking: This enables you to cook at different power settings & stages of the cooking cycle. So, to simmer the food you can program the microwave oven at the start of the cooking cycle to automatically change power settings after specified time intervals.
Auto defrost and steam cooking: All microwaves can defrost food, but it's best to opt for one that has auto defrost, where you only need to select the type and weight of food. A new feature that has been added is steam cooking.
Child safety lock: This is essential if you have kids, preventing them from misusing or accidentally operating the oven.
Bi-level cooking: Most microwave ovens come with racks that enable two items, or more, to be cooked at the same time.
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