Saturday, June 1, 2013

Solar Cooking

My wife gave me a solar oven for Christmas a few years ago.  While there are plenty of build-your-own solar oven instructions on the web, let's just say that was one of the many projects I just hadn't got around to yet...Anyway, I like the organization she purchased the oven from.  And it works great, too.  

When sunny, the solar oven usually sustains temperatures of 250-300 deg. F., even in winter

We use it fairly often, mostly on weekends.  Today was a typical Saturday that was full of activities.  We went to the farmers market, then my wife took my younger son to the library's summer reading program kick-off, and I took my older son to the park.  Earlier in the morning, I put a pot of beans in the solar oven and let them cook while we were out.  Until I discovered the wonders of dried beans I usually would just dice some potatoes and slice some carrots for solar cooking.  

My sons are impressed with the steam, especially in the winter

When we all got home for lunch, there was a nice pot of cooked beans to supplement our lunch.  The rest of the beans will last most of the week and be part of several meals.  The solar oven, like a crock pot, is nice for cooking while you are away from home during the day.  Unlike a crock pot, the solar oven needs nice sunny weather.  However, kids won't notice a crock pot, but with a solar oven they get to experience the sun's energy (especially on a cold day) which prompts a lot of good questions.  

1 comment:

  1. I went to a solar oven workshop last summer. It was pretty amazing. We made mini solar oven out of pizza boxes as a demo while the leader baked cookies in a larger homemade oven. The mini ovens worked great for heating up pre-cooked foods and we've used them many times. I led some college students in making them for earth day this year. We've never gotten around to the full size project yet though. So many awesome projects and ideas! I bet your boys find it all fascinating! (As do I!)