Monday, April 4, 2016

Sunday Funday Monday ~ Solavore Solar Oven Play

After the debut run across the bay, dinghy and outboard doing just what they were supposed to do (yay!), I tied up and went to the library for a demonstration or 5 of the Solavore solar oven. I was trying to find a blog post I did on this years ago but it eludes me. My interest was perked by the fact that for each oven bought, one was given out in a third world country, where cooking resources in some instances are all but depleted. I've been looking at them for a long, long time and now had the opportunity to get up close and personal with one? Or six. I was in!

First sighting was out on the pavers in front of the library. John was working on one of his dishes.

John has been using his oven for over 15 years.

On his boat.

Cooking everything from bread to fish
I wasn't sure what he was cooking but it was going to be good. I've heard both local and visiting boaters talk about John's shared food for years, all raves and all from his solar oven. That's about as good an endorsement as it gets.

Anne and Doug chatting about various features

Ray! Stop drooling over the banana bread!

This was soooo good!
An interesting thing about cooking in one of these is that the amount of liquid is either less than usually used or not used altogether. Hard boiled eggs with no water...there's a concept to wrap your brain around. 

Doug had made ginger rice. White rice and sliced up ginger, using about 3/4 of the water usually used. He makes enough for a week and then adds various ingredients for a wide variety of meals. What cultural food group doesn't use rice for something? He keeps the rice in his fridge, cooks up whatever he's making and then adds the rice to heat it up before finishing. That works. And it was delicious. 

As rice goes, it was perfect. And you really can't overcook it.
It just sort of stays on done (I'm sure you could wreck it if you left it out for days but
that would be silly)

The outside of the cooker stays cool to the touch while the inside is hot!
Use a mitt, Doug!
John had made bread and a tapanade. Then he put cheese on top of that and put it on to melt (that's what he was making when I walked up - it was ready really quickly due to yesterday's beautiful sunny day and use of the reflectors).

John's bread has all sorts of nuts and grains. It is dense and delicious.

Anne (who owns the company these days, by the way) made skinless, boneless chicken thighs. They went perfectly with Doug's rice. 

Anne told us she put NO liquid in. Just the chicken thighs and a jerk rub.
The liquid in the pot is from the meat itself. 
Emma's demo
Emma made a spinach dish that has been her holiday offering over the years, now translated to the solar oven. I'm not sure exactly what to call it except really good. She was explaining the differences in using ingredients for a vegan diet versus a vegetarian or carnivorous diet. So many ways to cook! Obviously, anyone who knows me knows I'm a carnivore but I can seriously appreciate any dish well prepared and yummy. This was definitely one of those. 

Regina brought the sweet to the savory with her chocolate cake.
She reminded us about using less liquid and how for this cake she used both pots rather than one, which would have given it more height. Height or no, it was good cake!

Did I mention we had mimosas too?

With a light turn out (lots happening on a Sunday, especially when the vet is on island) there was more than enough of everything for everyone to get filled up. We did. 

I think the concept of solar cooking might seem like buying a bread machine...would I ever use it? But seeing these demos and realizing it can be incorporated into life very easily, opened up the reality of the idea more for me. Not using up precious resources (or ones dangerous to the earth and inhabitants to acquire) is a big scoring point, along with something not thought about much by first world countries but well known to island people (and in many countries of the world): the amount of lung disease that can and does occur cooking over charcoal and wood for years on end. Not a good thing. 

Notice how crazy healthy these people look? Is it the oven? Hmmm. 

What you see is what you get.
The reflectors are optional.
You can find out a lot more about the oven on the Solavore web site, just click here!

Have a mind over matter Monday. Do something minimally. 

No comments:

Post a Comment