Induction cooking has been around for a while. But, it’s only in recent years that it became the latest buzz in the kitchenware industry. You’ve probably heard about induction cooktops being faster, more reliable, and energy-efficient compared to conventional gas and electric counterparts.
It sounds too good to be true, right? Well, the truth is, induction cooking is backed by solid science. So, it’s through understanding how induction works that you can decide whether or not an induction cooktop is an ideal fit for you.
Whether you’re planning to renovate your current kitchen or building a new one from scratch, this article explores the ins and outs of induction cooking. Read on!
Before induction, you could use an electric or gas stovetop for cooking food. To the unfamiliar eye, an induction cooktop has a striking resemblance to the generic glass stovetop, but without the telltale glow that’s typically seen when the burner is on.
An induction burner contains a ceramic plate that sits on an electromagnetic coil. Once the burner is turned on, electric current flows through the coil, thus creating a magnetic field with no heat. When the stovetop is powered up, and induction cookware is placed on it, the magnetic field permeates the cookware’s metal. Thus, this generates a barrage of smaller electric currents within the cookware rather than the stovetop.
The energy is then converted to heat, which spreads evenly throughout the base of the cookware, thus heating its contents. Once you remove the cookware, its residual heat dissipates in a jiffy. As a result, the induction burner cools off faster than the gas or electric counterparts. It doesn’t get more intuitive than that!
Electromagnetic induction refers to the process by which electricity is generated via magnetism. The first induction cooktop debuted in 1933 in Chicago at the World’s Fair. It was slow to gain traction in the U.S due to reliability and noise concerns. But it’s widely accepted today among those on a quest for a more precise and efficient method of cooking.
Below are some of the perks that come with this modern cooking method.
While a conventional electric or gas burner transmits heats onto and around the cookware, a significant amount of energy is lost to the cooktop and the surrounding air. However, with an induction cooktop, the energy is produced directly in the cookware, which makes it roughly 60% and 40% more efficient than the gas and electric counterparts. Therefore, along with the potential power cost savings, this makes induction cooking a more environmentally-friendly option.
The only time your induction stovetop may be hot to the touch is right after removing the cookware from the burner area. Nonetheless, if you accidentally turn on the burner or leave it on long after you’re done cooking, there’s no risk to anyone who unknowingly touches the surface.
Most induction cooktops have an in-built safety feature that automatically cuts off their power supply when they’re not in use or if a pot has boiled dry. Thus, this gives you the much-needed peace of mind in knowing that you and the members of your household are safe.
Induction cooktops instantly channel heat to your food, unlike the electric or gas counterparts, where the heat stems from the burner instead of the cookware. Therefore, a pot of water or soup will boil in nearly half the time of a gas-powered unit. And, your induction cookware will automatically respond to the temperature changes upon turning down or increasing the heat.
An induction cooktop has a striking resemblance to the generic glass tops. But, there’s one crucial variation. Cleaning glass tops can be a daunting task when the food you’re cooking boils over and causes a mess. With an induction cooktop, this is the least of your worries because it becomes a little warm due to the cookware placed on it.
However, the heat is insufficient to bake anything on the cooktop. Furthermore, the chances of boiling something over are slim to none, which means less cleaning. So, to keep the cooktop clean, you can just wipe down the surface with a damp cloth or sponge once you’re done cooking. There’s no need to scrub or take the burners apart to fish out crumbs that fell in as you were cooking.
The different settings on induction cooktops facilitate more precise control. A setting of 7 can boil water without it spilling over, 5 may boil thicker contents like soup, and 3 will simmer a covered stockpot of rice. Contrary to electric and gas cooktops, the surface of induction counterparts remains warm without getting hot, which makes them more responsive to temperature changes.
So, you can boil rice on settings of ‘high’ then immediately turn it down to simmer on the same burner. Unlike gas cooktops, you don’t need to eyeball a pot to prevent its contents from boiling over.
Induction technology is always evolving. The newest generation of induction air systems is situated right beside and not above the hob. Advents in technology such as the Grundig induction air system not only serves aesthetic purposes but is also the epitome of efficiency in odor prevention. It sucks away any unpleasant odors before they diffuse.
Using a nine-step touch control, you can control the hob and induction air system. What’s more is that cleaning the induction air system is a walk in the park, courtesy of ceramic filters that have a 2-year service life. This makes them more long-lasting compared to the generic carbon filters.
There’s no shadow of a doubt that induction cooking comes with an array of benefits such as the ones outlined above. While it’s the wave of the future, the convenience it brings certainly comes at a steeper price compared to the generic electric and gas cooktops. And, you’ll need to invest in induction cookware. Nonetheless, the efficiency that comes with induction cooking is well worth it.