Jump to content


Welcome to the eG Forums!

These forums are a service of the Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, a 501c3 nonprofit organization dedicated to advancement of the culinary arts. Anyone can read the forums, however if you would like to participate in active discussions please join the Society.

Photo

Cook-tops: Gas and/or Induction?


  • Please log in to reply
40 replies to this topic

#31 dabutcha76

dabutcha76
  • participating member
  • 3 posts

Posted 09 June 2014 - 12:45 AM

I used to be firmly in the 'Gas'-camp. Having cooked on electric and ceramics (the ones with the heat lamps, not sure what you guys call them stateside), I was convinced any electric kind of cookery wouldn't be for me. However, as we got our new place in 2011, there was an B-brand induction unit in the installed kitchen - and with money pretty tight after some 'minor' refurbishing, I was kind-of forced to give it a go. Most pans turned out to work (think I threw out 2 that were leftovers of my student days), so that was a bonus.

 

At first, I found it to be acceptable: there is a bit of a learning curve as to what setting to use for which application, as opposed to 'just' judging flame size. I think it took me about a month to get the hang of it and I was 'quite ok' with using it.

 

Fast forward a couple of years: I decided to do some remodeling of the kitchen, as I REALLY hated the built-in electric oven. I decided I wanted a Neff oven due to its brilliant Slide 'n Hide door system which I saw on the Great British Bake off. As it turned out, the old induction hob didn't fit above the new oven, so I had to get a new hob as well. With both gas and proper electrics available, the choice was wholly open.

 

Being 'quite ok' with the induction setup and having been quite happy with gas in years before, I decided to go out and test some setups. Fortunately, there's a wealth of great kitchen stores in the area, and they were all happy to accommodate some testing during 'cook-ins' they organize. I'll save you the details, but at the end of the day, I ended up with induction, although it was a pretty close call: I still like gas a lot, especially for the 'oomph' it has, but I got a flex induction setup (also from Neff, also available in 90cm/36"), which gave me so much flexibility on the stove top, it won in the end. I don't have the space for it, but I wouldn't have mind a large, high BTU, wok-burner on the side - although I can reach pretty some awesome heat with the hob's 'Power'-setting - prawns just get done in an eye blink.

 

Unfortunately, it doesn't seem the Neff brand is available in the US. Bosch and Siemens have similar setups, though - and they come from the same BSH-manufacturing plant ;-)

 



#32 lindag

lindag
  • participating member
  • 368 posts
  • Location:W. Montana

Posted 09 June 2014 - 07:10 AM

@lindag, go to http://www.gardenweb.com and search on "induction" in "home".   Lots of models, lots of opinions.... 

Thanks, Barb, I'll look in it. 



#33 Raamo

Raamo
  • participating member
  • 84 posts
  • Location:Minnesota

Posted 09 June 2014 - 12:32 PM

MC did effeciency testing of Gas vs Electic Coil vs Induction.... and Induction is the most efficent - but not by leaps and bounds like some would say.

 

If you can put up with it's limitations it's pretty darn amazing.

 

I've got a 30" Thermadore induction cook top and from boiling water to searing it's got the power and the control.  The surface doesn't get crazy hot even when the poots sure do and if I really need to use a flame that's what a blow torch is for.



#34 muddleaged

muddleaged
  • new member
  • 1 posts

Posted 17 August 2014 - 04:23 PM

When considering an expensive purchase with no experience, it would make sense to me to "try" it out.  One option I found is looking for induction burner on amazon.  There are lots with varying reviews, including many under $100.  

 

I have not tried yet, but I'm considering one to use for summer canning so I can work on the porch rather than heating/steaming the kitchen.

 

And it would give me an extra burner to pull out for those few times I need one.  One of the amazon reviewers said s/he puts it on the sink counter for when she needs quick/easy access to water.

 

I may be talking my self into one as I write. . . 

 

 



#35 MikeMac

MikeMac
  • society donor
  • 96 posts
  • Location:Calgary

Posted 17 August 2014 - 08:33 PM

I have both gasand induction. Once you get used to not seeing the flame I am firmly in the induction camp. Only issue is with portable units you are limited to 15 amp 110 V which does the job but takes its time with big pots if you have 220 40 Amp hang on for the rife it's SOO fast you will burn things at first.

Only thing induction can not do is light Flambés by just tilting the pan you will need a match.
Mike Macdonald Calgary

#36 cyalexa

cyalexa
  • participating member
  • 99 posts
  • Location:Stillwater, Oklahoma

Posted 18 August 2014 - 04:06 AM

I have both gasand induction. Once you get used to not seeing the flame I am firmly in the induction camp. Only issue is with portable units you are limited to 15 amp 110 V which does the job but takes its time with big pots if you have 220 40 Amp hang on for the rife it's SOO fast you will burn things at first.

Only thing induction can not do is light Flambés by just tilting the pan you will need a match.

I got induction because there is no natural gas in my area and I didn't want a propane tank in my yard. I am very happy with my induction cook top and would now always choose one over gas.  I also have a portable hob and while it is useful, you are right, it is nowhere near as powerful and, at least with the inexpensive model I bought, it has a pretty noticeable hot spot and far fewer adjustment levels. Also, induction cannot be used to char tortillas or peppers. 



#37 MikeMac

MikeMac
  • society donor
  • 96 posts
  • Location:Calgary

Posted 18 August 2014 - 09:37 PM

You can char on induction you are correct it's not as easy as using an open flame use a cast iron pot on full. Usually the max temp allowed by a induction burner is around 500 F so you are right its wimpy. I have a Cooktek unit.
Mike Macdonald Calgary

#38 Raamo

Raamo
  • participating member
  • 84 posts
  • Location:Minnesota

Posted Yesterday, 12:55 PM

I've had my induction cook top for 6 months now.  I don't think I could use anything else now.

 

It boils water stupid fast.  Yet I can control the level of heat with repeatable precision I could never find with a dial.  Is 7 too much, 6.5 then etc.  And when the element is turned off the temperature drops fast.  Even when the pan is removed the glass surface is only around 200F and this is after frying at 380F.

 

It's made controlling simmering pots of water easy, heats up oil in a fry pan quickly and backs off as quickly.  This is a Thermadore unit and it blows the pants off a 120V wall plugged in unit.  Which it better at 25x the cost :)



#39 OliverB

OliverB
  • participating member
  • 1,311 posts
  • Location:the foot of Mount Diablo, CA

Posted Yesterday, 08:08 PM

I have to decide about this eventually myself too, I don't have gas in the kitchen but under the house. Been cooking with a crappy Jennair with those open coils for some 18 years now. I like the idea of gas, but the idea of cleaning all those grates and areas underneath is not very appealing to me. At all. And yes, I'm sure I'd set things on fire for a while, as I'm not use to having a flame.
Heat is an other issue, my kitchen gets pretty warm in summer already.

I'll be reading up on induction for sure.

Do they still make the 'flexible' ones where the surface detects your pot and the pot size? A while ago there was one that did that for quite a number of different size pots.


"And don't forget music - music in the kitchen is an essential ingredient!"
- Thomas Keller

Diablo Kitchen, my food blog

#40 lesliec

lesliec
  • host
  • 1,150 posts
  • Location:Wellington, New Zealand

Posted Yesterday, 08:25 PM

Do they still make the 'flexible' ones where the surface detects your pot and the pot size? A while ago there was one that did that for quite a number of different size pots.

 

A solid vote from me for induction.

 

Oliver, I can't be at all authoritative on what's available in your market, but Electrolux used to make a top with large 'zones' rather than specific areas your pots were supposed to be placed on.  But I don't think that's particularly important.  Induction units only heat what's directly in contact with them, so you can happily put a small pot on a large 'element' - you're not going to be wasting any power or heat.


Leslie Craven, aka "lesliec"
Host, eG Forumslcraven@egstaff.org

After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relatives ~ Oscar Wilde

My eG Foodblog

eGullet Ethics Code signatory


#41 Anna N

Anna N
  • eGullet Society staff emeritus
  • 6,286 posts
  • Location:Oakville, Ontario, Canada

Posted Today, 02:37 AM

A solid vote from me for induction.
 
Oliver, I can't be at all authoritative on what's available in your market, but Electrolux used to make a top with large 'zones' rather than specific areas your pots were supposed to be placed on.  But I don't think that's particularly important.  Induction units only heat what's directly in contact with them, so you can happily put a small pot on a large 'element' - you're not going to be wasting any power or heat.



That is an interesting statement, Leslie. I have an induction range and in the past used portable induction units. Pan size is an issue with both. To work on the larger designated areas a pan must reach a certain size or simply will not work. I am now accustomed to this quiirk and rarely make the mistake of putting a too small pan on a large area. But a surface that sensed pan size would overcome this altogether. I take it you do not have this issue.
Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

"It either works fine or not, but what the heck. This is bread, not birth control." Susan of Wild Yeast blog
Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog
My 2004 eG Blog