Kitchen Tips Including Induction Hot Plate and Microwave/Convection Oven Tips

5/17/14 Saturday in Jefferson, OH (Kenisee Lake-TT)

Another really cold day. Ah Spring. Member Appreciation meeting at 11 am, with donuts and coffee, so of course we went. Before that John watched his old TV shows while I read and wrote yesterday’s blog. As people gathered before the meeting we got to talking and before you knew it, there never really was a meeting. The new manager introduced himself as we’d walked in and because we were in such deep conversations he just got to talking to a small group away from our group. So we had a great time getting to know Mike and Peggy. After a late lunch (too much fun talking) we went shopping at the bulk food store (a favorite from our last trip) and grocery store. At home we watched “Hondo” on the TV then whipped up supper-grilled pork chops-yum! Then our walk (still cold), with a quick stop at Mike/Peggy’s place.

house

Kitchen Tips: you can get a water saver faucet nozzle to replace one that may just let a solid stream of water flow. Definitely get a set of wire strainers to replace your regular strainers-in kitchen as well as bathroom and shower. Anything to limit what goes down your tiny plumbing. Since you can’t use regular “Liquid Plumber” cleaners (bad for your gray water tank), when the sink gets plugged you can use a small sink auger (pipe snake) to go down and loosen what is clogging things, like John did a few weeks ago. An idea for preventing clogged sinks: fill with very hot water, then let go all at once just before dumping your tanks. Another prevention method: pour Happy Camper (Camping World) dissolved in a bit of water down all drains once a month before retiring at night. Happy Camper “eats” the residue in drains and keeps them clog free. We also have a water filter just for the cold water under the kitchen sink.

We rarely use our propane stove, because we prefer our induction hot plate. It doesn’t use our propane, just the campground’s electricity and it’s SO much easier to clean. I also can put the covers over my propane stove top and have more counter space now. Induction works via a magnet so it responds quickly to power-heats up fast and the cookware needs to contain iron (attract a magnet). You can get them at Kohl’s, Camping World or online. Note: this is another high use appliance-5-13 amps depending on the temperature you’ve set it at. To save on water use I microwave a pitcher of water to wash my dishes, rather than let the water run until it gets warm enough. I also only put the hot water to heat (via electricity not my propane) first thing in the morning and before supper so it has time to warm before I do dishes. Since the water heater takes 12 amps, I consider it one of the “high use” items, so it’s one to be careful when you use it.

Microwave/Convection Oven Tips: Clean the inside with “Awesome” all purpose cleaner from a Dollar Store. This is powerful stuff, so venting the rig would be a good idea. Spray on, let sit 15 minutes, scrub, then clean interior surface with full strength vinegar, then rinse with water. Stainless steel has a “grain”, so follow it when you wipe. I keep the heavy plate clean by placing a Teflon circle on the bottom, covering it. The circle is easily cleaned compared to the plate. For the spots that happen outside the Teflon circle I use a white “Scotch” scrubber (not as strong as the green scrubber) or scrub with a little baking soda. Another use for that Teflon circle is to put it on your lo/hi rack to hold cookies or cupcakes. You’ll need to place a silicon potholder between rack and circle to hold that slick circle in one place. I love the convection oven, but I used to be afraid of the heat so near the cupboards. Nothing’s caught on fire yet, so I’m not so concerned now. Nice to have the oven take the same space as the microwave, just have to remember to use the low rack when in convection or combination (microwave and convection) -hi/mix or lo/mix mode. This is another high use item (Microwave-8 amps, Convection-15 amps) to be careful what else you’re using at the time.

Cleaning stainless steel surfaces: Always clean in the direction of the grain to remove soils in the grooves, distilled white vinegar does a good job. The secret to keeping it look new is weekly cleaning.

Toaster: Careful-this uses 7-13 amps.

Crock Pot: only uses 2 amps!

Clearly, mealtime is when you often need to vigilant with your amp usage. It’s also when other campers are using their electricity, so the voltage issue is worse during these times too. For a rule of thumb I feel safe using 2 high use items (heat pump/air conditioner and hair dryer are among those) at a time when we are on 30 amps. For 50 amps 3 such items are okay. I always check the voltage then too.

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About Patricia Elser

I've always loved the loose, flowing, transparent look of watercolors, of Chinese paintings and their calligraphy, but alas, no watercolor classes were available when I was in school, so that interest remained buried until my children were grown. Even then, I was afraid that I couldn't really paint, so upon my sister's advice, I actually started to take classes. I signed up for every class available, determined to learn no matter how afraid I was. I came upon a teacher, Stan Miller, who inspired me, who opened the door to success in watercolor. I love to look at beautiful images. I want to capture them forever. All my life, photography was how I gathered images of the beauty I saw. Thanks to all that photography, I enjoy composing pictures, especially up close. Watercolors allow me to add more of me in their translation of that beauty. My paintings reflect my love for music and dance, with their rhythm and flow. I am fascinated by the play of light, so it appears in my pictures as drama for they are filled with darks and lights. Maybe it's the challenge, maybe it's the beauty, but now, when a work comes together, it fills my soul.
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