Features in kitchen appliances today continue to approve at an incredible rate. If you are planning your new kitchen or are in the market for new appliances, here are some ideas to keep in mind as you make out your list.
Not Your Grandmother’s Icebox
If money is not a major concern, then designing your kitchen with built in features is a popular choice for many consumers. Refrigerators and other appliances can be recessed right into the overall layout of your kitchen. This gives the kitchen a sleek and uniform look with no large appliances jutting out into the room. If you do have to watch the budget like most of us, then these basic refrigerator models should be considered.
- Side By Side
- Wide Side By Side
- Top Freezer Model
- Bottom Freezer Model
Today’s side-by-side models allow for more overall capacity for food storage. Many models offer separate temperature controls for multiple zones inside the unit. Which may include controls for the crisper and meat storage areas. Since different foods often require different settings for the safest and longest storage, these features are worth considering.
Many models allow you adjust the storage layout to accommodate foods and beverages. Features may include gliding shelves for ease in reaching items. Spill catching shelves are very popular because they are specially designed to contain spills to the shelf itself instead of spilling all over the rest of your refrigerator. Just think of the time and effort it takes to clean up a major spill inside the unit and you will definitely want to insist on spill catching shelves. You can also look for shelves, which can be moved higher, or lower so taller items will fit easily inside the refrigerator.
Other Bells And Whistles
Many units offer crushed ice and chilled water without having to open the refrigerator door. With this feature, ice is always available without your having to worry if ice trays have not been refilled. A bottom freezer refrigerator may be right for you if you use your freezer less frequently. You can get at the items in the refrigerator a little easier if the freezer is out of the way. On the other hand, some consumers don’t like having to bend down to take frozen items out of the freezer. You may want to solve the problem altogether by keeping a separate freezer unit available that is about the same size as a standard refrigerator.
It’s All About Convenience
Just as some people would not buy a car without a cup holder, many people want refrigerators with wide and generous sized door shelves. Many models offer room for gallons of milk right inside the doors.
Turn On The Heat
The real staple in any kitchen is the oven of course. If you are a dedicated cook, you may want to consider a convection oven for your kitchen. A convection oven has a fan installed inside that circulates the air in the oven around your food for more thorough cooking. Convection ovens are almost always found in professional kitchens and eliminates the need to rotate food as it cooks. Unfortunately, you will probably still have to rotate your food even if you choose to purchase a home convection oven. This is because smaller ovens will almost always have hot spots inside which may prevent food from cooking as evenly as you would like. For the serious cook, you may want to consider a convection oven all the same. Even if you have to rotate your food during cooking cycles, you are still likely to get a better result in the end.
Settings Can Lie
An overlooked fact about ovens involves temperature settings. You may have always noticed that your oven temperature varies and that it takes some experimenting to figure out the true temperature settings for your particular oven. An oven with standard gauge or hand-turned controls can be inaccurate by up to 25 degrees. This will certainly result in overdone or underdone foods and can cause a great deal of frustration for the intrepid cook. To solve this problem, you may have to spend a bit more money, but it will be worth it if great results matter for your recipes. Consider purchasing an oven with electronic or digital controls. This allows you to set the oven temperature within a range of as little as five degrees in relation to the setting that your dish calls for.
Mind If I Vent?
All ovens have steam vents to allow steam built up inside the oven during cooking to escape. Steam build-up can ruin many dishes that you attempt. If the steam vent is not positioned properly, the steam can damage your stove’s electronics over time. If you’re in the market for a new stove, make sure that the steam vent will cause no damage to your control panel or other electronic components. You want your appliance to do the job you bought it to do while protecting your investment at the same time.
No More Coils
Of all the kitchen features that can make life in the kitchen easier, radiant, and halogen burners may be the most beneficial innovations on a day-to-day basis. Many older and current stoves today still have those old style coil burners on top of the oven. These are dangerous and difficult to clean when food inevitably spills onto the coils. Cleaning coils and the elements inside take a long time. Wouldn’t you rather have a stovetop that can be cleaned with one easy of a cloth? Radiant and halogen burners are fitted underneath in a smooth glass top surface. The heating element never comes in contact with your food and makes for easier maintenance and a more attractive look for your kitchen. These kinds of stoves are more expensive, but ridding yourself of the danger and mess of exposed stovetop coils is certainly worth the expense. Features now available in the modern kitchen have never been more convenient. The kitchen can now bring more happiness and togetherness for your family than ever before.
About the Author: Tim Norton is a college instructor and a freelance writer. Though originally from Portland, Maine, he has lived in Rhode Island for many years. He is the founder of the Providence Grays, a 19th century baseball team that demonstrates the game before 1900 for today’s fans. He also enjoys giving tips and advice on home improvement, decorating the babies room, and buying kitchen appliances.