Tips on selecting the right stove for your family
Are you on the hunt for the perfect stove to suit your family's needs? We show you the different types of stoves available in the market and what you should think about when selecting the right stove.
I love to cook. As a result, I find myself at the stove pretty often. I’m sure there are many of you who love to cook like me. On the other hand, there are also many mums out there who feel that cooking is a chore and prefer spending the least amount of time in the kitchen.
Whether you like cooking or not, you’ll probably agree with me that getting the right stove is really important. Here are a few tips to help you to buy the right stove in Singapore:
- Buy one to suit your need and not only for its looks. Many of us buy the best-looking appliances for the wrong reasons — either we get drawn into the salesperson’s demonstration during a shopping spree or get carried away with a particular brand’s advertising. Before you hit the shops, make sure you know what your need is — e.g. are you a ‘heavy-duty’ cook or an ‘occasional’ cook?
- Have a budget. The most expensive stove isn’t necessarily the one best suited for you. Consider a few different models and brands within your budget before you settle for one. Keep in mind that many good brands go on sale, so if you have made a choice, inform the salesperson to keep you posted about upcoming sales.
- Make sure you test the product. When visiting a showroom, ask the salesperson to give you a thorough demo and answer any queries you may have. Make sure you’ve already listed down all your questions beforehand.
Types of stoves and their advantages
- If you are an avid cook, then you may prefer a gas stove to control the heat as you cook. An electric stove heats up much slower.
- Better distribution of heat around cookware.
Advantages of a gas stove continued…
- You can select your burner depending on how you want something cooked – e.g. the big burner for stir-frying in a wok and the small burner for simmering a sauce.
- Using gas is more economical than using electricity and you can still cook a meal in the odd chance of a power outage.
Electric smooth-top cooker
- With its sleek glass-ceramic surface, this is by far the best looking stove.
- The heating unit is situated just beneath the surface, therefore being aesthetically more pleasing than an open flame.
- It is also a breeze to clean.
- A light will indicate that a burner is switched on.
However, there are a few negatives of an electric smooth-top stove. Cookware made of cast iron, stoneware and glass cannot be used as the surface of the stove can scratch easily. You also have to keep a close eye on the food while cooking because if the contents of your pot dry up, then the metal will overheat and get stuck to the top layer of glass.
Coil-type electric cooker
With a coil-type stove, the electricity heats up the coil using a conducting metal. This in turn heats up the bottom of the cookware. Many prefer this cooker for its affordability. However, the biggest negative about this type of stove is that it is usually difficult to keep the coil 100% level, which can result in uneven cooking.
The biggest difference between an induction cooker and a coil-type or smooth-top electric cooker is that the former uses induction heating. This makes the cooking vessel heat up, as opposed to an element on the smooth-top cooker heating up and transferring the heat to the cooking vessel. In other words, when you use the induction-type cooker, it’s the cookware itself that becomes the heat source.
The induction cooker is more energy efficient and heats up and cools down faster than other electric cookers. It also gives you more control over the heat, similar to a gas cooker. The downside is that similar to smooth-top stoves, only limited types of cooking vessels can be used.
Remember, all these cookers need to be used with caution, especially around kids. The best option is to have a safety gate that prevents them from entering the kitchen. You can also install a hob safety guard to prevent inquisitive little hands from exploring the stove. This link will give you an idea of the safety guards available in the market.
Which type of cooker do you use? Answer our poll to let us know.