Monday, October 18

Hob or induction: what type of kitchen is right for me?


A week ago a reader wrote us the following email: “Good afternoon; I have been a member of eldiario.es for a long time and I would like to suggest a topic for an article in your section: a comparative analysis between kitchen options: glass ceramic vs induction in particular.

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I would be interested in information regarding the advantages and disadvantages of glass-ceramics and induction from the point of view of energy consumption, quality of food processing, possible polluting effects, etc. “.

So let’s take a look at the profile of each of these electric cooking systems, which are increasingly replacing traditional gas hobs, except in professional kitchens. We will analyze them both from a functional point of view and their advantages and disadvantages, which of course depend a lot on the requirements and needs of each person.

What is the difference between a glass ceramic and an induction hob?

The glass ceramic It is an electric cooker system based on a smooth vitrified ceramic plate, which has both a great resistance to heat and a rapid ability to transmit it. Consequently, it is a glass surface with two to four circular heating elements underneath, as a stove.

These resistances are heated with electrical power and transmit the heat to the surface, where the saucepan, pot or pan that we want to heat will go. The glass ceramic hobs are turned on with a finger button and allow to regulate the power that we want to apply to the hob.

Instead, induction cookers They work with a powerful magnet that is electrically stimulated, creating a magnetic field that generates heat on the metal surface immediately above it. Like the glass-ceramic, they have a smooth ceramic glass surface and can also regulate the heat they give out using a button.

What is better induction hob or glass ceramic?

Advantages of the glass ceramic

  • All kinds of containers can be used: It is a system that accepts, like gas, all types of surfaces to be heated and does not require special pots or pans, sometimes somewhat more expensive. It also accepts clay pots and containers, ideal for certain stews and stews where the rate of heat transmission is very important.
  • Produces a progressive heating: The heating elements do not immediately heat the containers or the food, which can be an advantage in the case of certain products that should not be heated too quickly, so they can burn or lose part of their properties if we are not careful. An example is the coffee in an Italian coffee pot, which requires a progressive boiling that allows prolonged contact between the coffee grind and the water so that it is well infused.
  • Its surface is easy to clean: As it is a smooth surface, it does not require major complications when cleaning impurities and debris that may have jumped out of the containers. At most it requires a specific product to remove the incrustations, but it is not necessary to apply it every time it is cooked, unless it has been splashed a lot. The remains of frying oil, for example, are easily removed with kitchen paper.
  • Its effectiveness is not affected by impurities on the surface: If there are small layers of impurities left, the glass-ceramic can tolerate them quite well, since the heat continues to flow and even tends to carbonize them, thus facilitating their elimination.

Disadvantages of the glass ceramic

  • It has a significant electrical cost: Being an electrical resistance, your expense will be noted on the monthly bill if we cook frequently.
  • Takes time to heat up: This fact, which can help us in certain dishes, can be annoying if we are in a certain hurry or if, for example, we want to bring a significant amount of water to a boil. The ceramic hob takes its time and sometimes the wait can become inconvenient when we are cooking complicated dishes.
  • Cooling of the surface is not immediate: We must control what we cook and not think that when the stove is turned off the container will not continue to cook, since the glass ceramic takes a long time to cool down. On the other hand, this can be an advantage, since we can turn off the stove before the end and let the remaining heat of the resistance finish cooking the food.
  • It is dangerous in the presence of children: For the aforementioned reason, it is dangerous for a child to inadvertently put his hand on the stove, believing that it is cold simply because it is off.

Advantages of induction

  • Heats twice as fast as the glass ceramic: The electromagnetic field acts rapidly on the metal surface of the container and transmits heat at high speed. It is perfect for bringing liquids to a boil and cooking vegetables, rice, pasta or simply heating a soup. In this sense, it is as effective as the microwave.
  • Spend half that of your rival: As it only acts on the metal surface of the container, it does not have additional heat losses. Furthermore, stimulating the magnet requires less energy than heating a resistor. According to the Nergiza website, specialized in measuring the consumption of household appliances, induction spends 48% less than glass-ceramic.
  • Allows you to control the cooking temperature with great precision: The magnet does not have caloric inertia, so it acts like gas with the exception that we can digitally control the power we apply, something that we do with a good eye for gas. Remember that the glass ceramic does have inertia and therefore, when it is turned off, it is still hot. The culinary critic Mikel López Iturriaga he prefers it.
  • It is less dangerous for children: As it lacks inertia, once the induction cooker is switched off it cools down quickly, which makes it less dangerous for children.
  • It is easy to clean: It is just as easy to clean as the glass-ceramic, an advantage over gas hobs.

Disadvantages of induction

  • You have to buy specific containers: The bottom of the pots and pans must be made of a metal that interacts with the magnet, although this is becoming less and less an inconvenience because the offer is very wide and there are hardly any price differences compared to classic containers.
  • They do not serve clay pots and other artisan kitchen containers: This can be a problem if we are very fond of cooking traditional stews. Some professional chefs claim that although stews can also be cooked with induction, the result is not the same as with clay.
  • They are much more expensive: The price can be doubled compared to a glass ceramic hob, so it is convenient to calculate whether we will use it so much that in the long run it will compensate us for the savings in consumption.
  • You have to adapt the way of cooking to your heat flow: When we cook certain foods that require progressive heating, or avoid boiling, we must be vigilant and learn to handle the power levels, because with induction heat times are greatly shortened. In the case of coffee, it is convenient to set the stove to medium power if we want to get the most out of the infusion.

Three interesting models of glass ceramic hobs

Corberó CCVM300

It is a 60 cm square ceramic hob. on the side, with three cooking zones and a power of 5700 W. It also features the Control Touch ignition and graduation system, with power levels and a 99-minute timer.

The large area is 29 cm., For large pots and pans. The edges are beveled. Its price is 147 euros.

Hisense E6322C

Vitroceramic hob with three zones, one with a 30 cm Giant Spotlight and triple crown. The top is 60 cm and has a child safety lock. The surface is scratch and shock resistant. The touch control will allow us to cook in a practical and simple way and with all the functions within reach. Its price is 199 euros, although it is on offer for 155 euros.

Balay 3EB714ER

Plate with the semi-giant 24 cm area and easy-to-use touch control and useful functions: memory, automatic start, alarm, etc. It also adds a programming function to calculate the shutdown according to the different foods.

On the other hand, the graduation offers 17 cooking levels in each zone. It also provides the safety function for children with the option of permanent or temporary blocking. The dimensions of the product are: 45 mm high; 59.2 cm wide and 52 cm deep. Its price is 199 euros, although it is on offer for 170 euros.

Two models of induction hobs

CLOSE CBBIH3

This built-in induction hob has three variable power cooking zones, which can be controlled independently. It has nine power levels, suitable for various cooking needs. Its price is 190 euros.

Add a timer and security system with a child safety lock, a high temperature indicator, an automatic safety shutdown when there is nothing on the surface, and also a timer to turn off automatically. It is suitable for special 12-36cm pots and bowls for induction cookers. If no utensils are detected, the induction cooker will turn off automatically.

IsEasy Induction

Plate with three zones and nine power levels. It features an overheating reminder, safety function, alarm, and nine power levels for each of its three burners. Its price is 182 euros.

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