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Microwaving
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by: Lutongbahay.com
 

Microwaving is a form of cooking in which food is bombarded by microwaves that excite the water molecules, thereby heating the food. One advantage of microwaving is that small amounts of food are heated very quickly, making it useful for reheating leftovers. The disadvantage is that food which is microwaved does not undergo some of the chemical reactions such as browning, which makes the food attractive to eat. Microwave ovens often do not cook very evenly, leading to a concern that bacteria easily killed by more traditional cooking methods may survive the quick cooking time in "cold spots", even though the food item as a whole is cooked to a safe average temperature. Also, microwaving is awkward for cooking large amounts of food, and therefore has been of limited usefulness in a commericial setting.

Because of these properties, professional chefs generally recommend using microwaves for a limited set of tasks, including boiling water (microwaving heats the water very fast with little loss of oxygen, leading to good results in tea, for example, see danger of superheating below), melting fats such as butter and chocolate, cooking grains like oatmeal? and grits, thawing frozen meats and vegetables before cooking with other methods, and quickly reheating already-cooked foods.

Boiling water does add another danger, however: superheating?. In a microwave, water can be raised quickly to a temperature above the boiling point before major bubbles form, especially if it is purified and in a very clean glass vessel. When water in that state is disturbed, it can suddenly and unexpectedly boil violently, leading to a risk of scalding. Care should be taken when removing heated water from the microwave; make sure that one's hands are protected from possible boil-over, place the container on a level heat-proof surface and stir with a spoon. Also, never add powdered substances (such as instant coffee or cocoa mix) to the container taken from the microwave; pour the water slowly into another container that already contains the powder.

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June 24, 2017

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