Now we’re cookin’ with…ceramic

Microwave cookology keeps getting better and better. Back in the day, one would just throw whatever in the box and nuke it ‘till done. Problem with that was that many meals turned out soggy and unevenly cooked. Some meals turned out better than others, but ultimately nothing ever browned, which gives food good ol’ deliciousness.

Eventually microwaveable pizzas showed up on the scene and brought the necessity to be able to crisp and brown foods. Nobody wants a soggy pizza. Methods and materials have progressed from odd silver-lined boxes to browning plates and even browning bags.

The microwave works by shaking up water molecules, which in turn shake up other molecules. Setting them in motion creates heat, which cooks the food. Nice, fast and efficient. But too often lacking in deliciousness.

Researchers at Penn State have been working with two minerals, petalite and magnetite. The subsequent ceramic material has been found to speed up the cooking process by heating up the actual plate along with the food. Besides simply cutting down on cooking time, food should be more evenly cooked and even browned.

Ceramic cookware is actually not only at the research stage. Silar has a commercially available ‘Microwave Grill and Flatstone’, however their products are designed for industry. Maybe now that there’s a new competitor in town, we’ll start seeing these things pop up in every microwave in town.