Common Tragedies

Thoughts on Environmental Economics

Conserving in the Kitchen

Posted by Evan Herrnstadt on January 3, 2008

The New York Times discusses how improper use of heat in the kitchen wastes energy and gives some tips on how to be more efficient. Much of it is common sense:

No matter how efficient an appliance is, the cook can help simply by covering pots and pans with their lids. Some of the heat that enters through the bottom of the pot exits through the top, but a lid prevents much of it from escaping into the air. This is especially true when you’re bringing a pot of water to the boil. With the lid on, it will start bubbling in as little as half the time. Turning water into steam takes a lot of energy, and every molecule that flies away from the water surface takes all that energy with it into the air. Prevent its escape, and the energy stays with the pot to heat the rest of the water.

Others are things I’d never thought to do:

However heretical it may sound to soak dried pasta, doing so can cut its cooking time by two-thirds.

These ideas save energy and improve one’s cooking by increasing the precision with which the food is heated. Full article here.

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