The Three Kitchen Appliances I Can't Live Without (that also reduce my microwave usage)
Three of my favorite and most used kitchen appliances also have the benefit of reducing my family's usage of the microwave. Now this post is not about why you shouldn't use this appliance (we still have and use one); however, recently there has been some debate about whether using a microwave is good for our food and our health.
There are many conflicting studies on microwave usage. Some suggest that it preserves some nutrients, and others say that it destroys living enzymes in our food (similar to cooking at a very high heat). Some low level radiation and EMFs are emitted from the microwave, and we are not exactly sure how this effects our food. Yes, cooking food in the microwave is faster, but faster isn't always better as cooking at a lower temperature seems to retain more nutrients. After taking our cooking class in Italy, I now recognize the benefit of slow cooking our food. We roasted vegetables for almost 90 minutes, which were so delicious that we've made this dish several times since our trip and our kids love them too (including the eggplant). See below for the recipe.
I recently found a great article by Katie Kimball @ Kitchen Stewardship that dives into both sides of the microwave debate. Here are a few key points from her article that I wanted to share.
"If you’re going to cook food…some research has shown that cooking food in the microwave oven causes it to lose nutrients. Do you want to do that to your veggies?
If you’re going to reheat leftovers…is it worth the possible nutrient loss?
If you’re just boiling water or coffee…some research suggests that microwaves may emit radiation that could harm our bodies. How about that teapot?
CHOOSE what you’ll do for this microwave opportunity: to use or not to use?
COMMIT to doing your best WITHOUT stressing out over it. "
Here are my top kitchen appliances that we use daily and that have the added benefit of reducing our microwave usage.
Breville Toaster Oven- We've owned several different toaster ovens over the past 16 years, and this one is by far our favorite. You can cook an entire frozen pizza (which my kids now do independently), roast vegetables, reheat food, cook frozen foods in addition to making toast. We warm up our tortillas (something we used to do in the microwave) for Taco Tuesday. I've found that because of its smaller size (than the oven) that cooking times are reduced for baking/roasting. Almost anything you cook in your oven or microwave can be done in this amazing appliance.
Breville Milk Frother- This was a recent purchase (a Valentine's Day present to me and my family). I use it to warm and froth milk for matcha lattes, regular lattes and my nighttimeReishi Mushroom Elixir. My kids love making hot chocolate, and my hubby recently used this on his 7-Day Detox to turn his chocolate shake into a hot cocoa on a cold and damp spring night.
Electric Kettle - As you may already know I start my day with warm water and lemon juice and drink a ton of tea, so my electric kettle gets a lot of use. I recall having an electric kettle for the first time when I moved to London post college. Prior to that I'm pretty sure I had never seen this simple appliance, but I quickly took to it and embraced the British tradition of afternoon tea time. I love the look of this one, which is important as it sits out on my counter.