Microwave Usage: How to use the microwave optimally?
Microwave ovens have long been part of everyday life in many households. Most people use them mainly for defrosting and warming up.
But already with it, many uncertainties emerge: How to heat and at which power level? Which time settings are correct? What can we not put in the microwave?
Most people do not dare to cook in the microwave. Many consumers also wonder whether radiation is harmful.
Read how to use the microwave best, how the fast waves work, and whether they can damage.
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Using a microwave oven in summary
- If you’re in a hurry, you should prefer small portions and use two plates in a row if necessary. As a rule of thumb, if the amount of food is getting doubled, the preparation time is also increased.
- For an optimal result when heating food, use the power of about 400 to 500 watts. Although the process takes a little longer, the result is tastier and more germ-free.
- Especially with large portions, the food gets much too hot on the outside, although it is still cold in the middle. Form a ring on the plate and clear the middle of it. Now heat your food as you wish.
- If possible, use porcelain plates and vessels to heat your food. Glass and microwaveable plastics can also be used. Metal and plates with a gold rim should never be getting placed in the microwave.
Note: The microwave’s electromagnetic waves heat the water, fat, and salts in the food. Don’t heat dry food in the microwave.
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Microwave Usage – What we need to consider?
As easy as the microwave may seem to be to use, it still has its pitfalls in some respects. Many things go wrong – the result is that food is either heated too much or too little or becomes unappealing.
1. Microwaves get water flowing.
The heart of every microwave is the so-called magnetron, a transmitter that generates electromagnetic waves. These penetrate the food. Because of their wavelength, they excite molecules with a so-called dipole moment to oscillate. Water is such a typical molecule. But salts and fats also resonate. These oscillations generate heat directly in the food. So does heat not act from the outside as it does in the oven or on the stovetop.
2. Save energy and time with small quantities in the microwave
Microwaves save energy and time. However, this only applies to small quantities of up to 500 g; with the microwave, the following applies: double the amount equals double the time! While you need about the same time in the oven for two cakes as for one, the cooking time in the microwave always increases proportionally to the quantity.
Another advantage of the microwave is the possibility of low-fat and gentle cooking. But, we do not keep the vitamins better. If you cook on the stove, keeping the cooking times short is crucial. Add little water that no nutrients drain into the cooking water.
3. Limits of the microwave
Since microwaves only heat the water in the food up to a boiling point, temperatures above 100 °C are impossible. Therefore, pure microwaves cannot roast and do not produce a crispy crust. This only works with combination appliances that can simultaneously switch on a heat source such as a grill.
Do not heat dry food in the microwave, and if you try to heat rolls in it, you will find them dry as dust and hard as a rock. Before you cook, break and cut whole eggs, chocolate kisses, or sausages to avoid food bursting.
4. Suitable dishes for microwave
Not every dish is suitable for the microwave. Never use metal because it causes sparks and plates with gold rims. Glass, porcelain, and heat-resistant plastics are ideal. Pay attention to the designation “suitable for microwave” for plastics.
Older porcelain or earthenware can cause problems in the microwave. You can test whether it is suitable by placing the empty dish in the microwave for one or two minutes. If it gets hot, it is not appropriate. Please put a cup of water in the microwave during the test, as idle time can damage the microwave.
See Also: How Not Knowing Best Frozen Microwaveable Meals
5. Defrosting with the microwave
You can defrost frozen food in the microwave. But it would help if you were not in too much of a hurry. Defrost with low power of 100-250 watts. Every device has different defrost mode stages with low energy.
Use only slow defrost mode at low power and rest; temperature differences will help. With liquids or soups, stir between. But beware of delaying boiling, and if you rush, it can splash out of hot spots. Place a plastic spoon or a glass rod in the soup (any liquid) inside the microwave to avoid marks.
6. Warming up food quickly with microwave
Already we can quickly warm up cooked food in the microwave, and we can do it at full power. Often, however, a slightly more extended period at 400-500 watts is better suited to heat food evenly. The food must be heated evenly to at least 75 °C to reduce germs, and a few minutes of rest should also be allowed to equalize the temperature when heating up.
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7. Cooking in the microwave
Especially water-rich foods can quickly get cooked in the microwave, and a cover prevents the food from drying out but can also make it mushy. In principle, food should only be getting salted after cooking.
Vegetables are cleaned and chopped, placed on a plate, and covered with a cover. If necessary, add some more water or cream. Depending on quantity, starting temperature, and consistency, cook for about 2-6 minutes at 600 watts.
Meat can be cooked at 500-750 watts for about 3-5 minutes without adding water or fat. However, we can only cook roasts with a crispy crust in a combination appliance with a grill. The pieces of meat must be as equally thick as possible, preferably a maximum of 2.5 cm. Pork and poultry are well suited, while beef becomes slightly challenging.
We can also cook potatoes, rice, and pasta in the microwave with plenty of water, but this is only worthwhile for tiny quantities. Otherwise, foods that need to swell are better getting cooked in a pot on the stove.
See Also: Can You Reheat Mushrooms?
How safe are microwaves? – Microwave ovens have been getting used in the household for over 30 years. So far, no adverse effects on food or human health are known. The Federal Institute for Risk Assessment also considers microwave ovens to be safe.
Microwaves do not change food; their energy is not sufficient for this. Due to their wavelength cannot cause radiation damage or produce radiation (ionization) in the food. The effect of microwaves consists solely of the generation of heat, and the result in the food is ultimately the same as with conventional heating.
Microwaves cause local heating in the human body, just like in food. It is used, for example, in microwave therapy for sports injuries. Microwave devices in the household are entirely getting shielded so that no radiation can escape to the outside. Minimal leakage radiation cannot permanently be getting excluded. However, this may only be minimal at the device and decreases rapidly with further distance.
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Last Updated on 20/03/2022 by Buzz This Viral