Thursday, March 03, 2011

Microwave-free Living

About two weeks ago our microwave finally died, and it died tragically. I was warming up something for dinner when suddenly the bottom of the microwave (it is attached to the overhead cabinets) start smoking! It was a horrible smell that set off the smoke alarm and the smoke hung in the air even though we opened all the windows and doors. After determining that it was un-fixable, we tried to take it off the wall but discovered the genius who built this house had attached the cabinets around the microwave, making it unmovable. So now it's a place to put a picture Caley drew, not a usable microwave.
Honestly, I'm kind of glad it finally died. For the last several months I'd been feeling like a microwave wasn't the best thing to cook my family's food in, but since it still worked I would always go back to using it. But for the last few weeks we've been forced to re-heat foods in other ways and it's actually really easy and tastes much better!
This might not be big news for you, maybe you have lived without a microwave for a while, but for me it is mind-blowing. I did a little research and found a few helpful articles about microwave-free living such as this one.
Here are a few things I've discovered that work for me in warming things without the microwave.

  • Adding a little bit of water to the pan while warming things like casseroles and pasta helps immensely.
  • Warming soup and other liquid-y foods works best in small batches.
  • Warming breads and pancakes works best in the toaster oven.
  • Defrosting frozen meats works well in a plastic bag in a sink of lukewarm water. I've been surprised at how well this works, for all kinds of meats, including deli meat. 
  • I usually keep a tea kettle on the stove full of water to heat as needed and use for warming Wesley's food.
Probably the biggest difference since not using a microwave is the way reheated coffee tastes. It's so much better! Microwaved coffee use to make me sick to my stomach (whereas fresh never did), but stove-heated is nearly as good as fresh. 

I'm convinced that not using a microwave is better for my family and I hope it can stay that way!