While it isn’t officially summer yet, here in Maryland we’ve had some hot days. And when the weather turns hot, I change the way I cook. Casseroles are put on hold for cooler days. Soups are saved for days when we need to be warmed. The grill is fired up and the oven is used much less. I try to keep the kitchen as cool as possible to save on the cost of air conditioning. Here are some appliances I use to help me with that.
Grill. That’s a pretty obvious one for most of us. A grill keeps the heat outside. Many gas grills also have side burners allowing you to prepare multiple parts of the meal outside. All kinds of meat, poultry, and fish can be cooked on the grill, as well as many vegetables.
Slow Cooker. I plan on buying a new one soon and hope to use it frequently this summer. Since crock pots run hotter than they used to, you might find it heats up the kitchen more than you would like. For that reason, many people put theirs outside or in the garage. I hope to try that too.
Pressure Cooker. I love pressure cooking. If you haven’t bought a pressure cooker yet, the summer is a great time to give it a try. I highly recommend Kuhn Rikon, though it is costly. I bought a second one on eBay and I often use both my pressure cookers for one meal. A pressure cooker has several advantages, but the biggest one is that it cooks faster than regular methods. Faster equals less heat and energy used.
Turbo Oven. The Turbo Oven is a countertop convection oven. This is another appliance I use all the time. In the summer it allows me to cook things like roast chicken or oven fries without heating up my big oven. I actually use it for those items year round because it cooks them faster and uses less energy than my conventional oven.
If you are considering buying a turbo oven, I have Aroma brand. I have been happy with the way it cooks, but was very unhappy that the handle broke. It is much more difficult to handle the hot lid with a broken handle. I would not buy that brand again unless they redesign the handle. There are other brandsto choose from though.
What do you do to keep your kitchen cool in the summer?
For other frugal ideas, visit Frugal Fridays at Life as Mom.