Energy Efficient Cooking – 5 tips
One of the more creative aspects of green living and a natural lifestyle is preparing meals from scratch at home.
It not only costs less, but it’s healthier (you know exactly what you are eating) and you reduce the need for plastic packaging.
The trouble is, using fuel for cooking can be expensive, and with energy prices increasing all the time, many of us are looking for ways to make our homes more energy efficient.
Here are my top tips for eating well whilst keeping fuel costs to a minimum.
I never turn the oven on for just one meal, one loaf of bread or one tray of biscuits. When the oven is turned on I make the most of the electricity being used and batch bake.
It’s a great way to fill up the freezer with homemade ‘convenience meals’ and top up the cake tins. When the oven is turned off I still use the residual heat – it’s perfect for rice pudding or softening onions and garlic for using in sauces later in the week.
Slow cookers, or crock pots as they are known to our friends across the pond, are brilliant inventions. They are so simple to use and mean you can come home after a hard day to a perfectly cooked meal.
They use the minimum amount of power, require little washing up and can be used for breakfast too – put the ingredients for porridge into your slow cooker before going to bed and use a time switch so you wake up to a hot breakfast.
Choose the right size
Matching the size of the saucepan to the hob ring you are using is an important step in reducing the amount of fuel you use in the kitchen.
If the saucepan is too small, heat will be wasted around the sides and you’ll be heating the air not your food! In addition, gas flames licking up the sides of your saucepans can reduce their lifespan.
Choose the right supplier
According to a survey, around 40 per cent of the British public are clueless about how much they spend on their energy bills and around 20 per cent don’t know how to read their bills.
In addition, we’re collectively wasting around 4 billion pounds a year by not making the switch to another more competitive energy supplier. It pays to spend some time every few months using a price comparison site to make sure you’re getting the best deal.
Put a lid on it!
As well as matching the saucepan size to the hob size, remember to put a lid on your pans. If you’re cooking something like rice, pasta or potatoes you can even turn your hob OFF once the liquid comes to the boil and allow the residual heat to continue cooking your food.
It’s a simple tip that can make a big difference!
What about you? What tips do you have for us all to make our cooking more energy efficient?
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