Defrost your minced meat and heat up your clique faster? We have been testing microwaves for years. This wealth of experience provides a number of useful tips and tricks to use your microwave just that little bit smarter.
Ignore the automatic programs
Some microwaves have dozens, sometimes hundreds of automatic programs. With such an automatic program you ‘only’ have to enter what you want to prepare and the weight, the automatic program does the rest.
Our tests show that we get better results with our own settings with most microwaves than with automatic programs. Moreover, it is easier to adjust time or power (wattage) yourself than to figure out how to set an automatic program. So do it yourself.
Smarter freezing = faster thawing
The microwaves from a microwave do not penetrate very deeply into the core of the food. That is why a slice of bread thaws many times faster than a large block of minced meat. The more ‘outside’ a frozen meal has, the faster it thaws. It is, therefore, better to freeze a meal in a flat, oblong package than in a cube shape, and make a block of minced meat as flat as possible before it goes into the freezer, for example.
Use the combi mode
In most combi microwaves, you can use the microwave setting and oven set at the same time in combi setting. The microwaves of the microwave setting heat up the food faster, while the oven setting ensures a crispy crust. For example, baking a quiche and lasagna is faster than in a regular oven.
Use heat transfer
Not all microwaves in our test can defrost or heat up evenly. You can give your microwave a helping hand by stirring everything well, if necessary a few times. What also helps (but less well) is to leave the food for 1 or 2 minutes after the microwave program has ended.
In our test, the microwaves with a turntable score better on average for even heating than those without a turntable.
Keep the heating element clean
If you have a combi microwave with a heating element on the ‘ceiling’, always cover your meal or drink when you use the microwave setting, so that no splashes come against the heating element. Make sure that the air can escape. Poke a few holes in the lid or cover the meal very loosely. There are ventilation holes in microwave foil and special microwave dishes. With combi microwaves, a heating element that hangs in the oven cavity is almost always difficult to clean, according to our test.