As part of the English program at IESEG, students of the Sixth Term work with a module called “Cooking with a Microwaves Oven”. They learned about the benefits of using microwaves, special cooking utensils, cooking techniques and recipes selected and presented on step-by-step photographs and simple concise directions by an expert French chef.

 During cooking practice done at home in a few projects, they learned about cooking times for different ingredients and full dishes. Most of the dishes prepared were quick and easy. The correct type of utensils was mentioned and the flavor of dishes and even desserts were guaranteed to bring gourmet pleasure. Now we know that when we cook with this type of oven, microwaves vibrate constantly every second. The frequency of microwaves is almost at 2,500 megahertz. When a microwave oven is turned on, the food molecules are agitated, moving quickly against each other, creating friction and heat cooks food. Among suitable cooking dishes are those made of glass, china, pottery and plastic. They are good because they do not act as barriers for microwaves; however, metal utensils or utensils with metallic decorations should never be used since they reflect the microwaves and are flammable.

 The use of appropriate utensils is like the use of any workman’s tools which determine success or failure. Food preparation will be very easy with well-constructed pots or pans, great knives and cooking tools. For the use of microwave ovens, we now know that in the market are meat thermometers, round or rectangular cake dishes, round casseroles, plastic spatulas, microwave broiler, etc.

Students began cooking fruits (apple, pineapple, pears, mango), vegetables (carrots, potatoes, peas, string beans, spinach), pasta and rice. Other basic cooking was potato-chips, brownies, popcorn, bacon, and a baked potato. The first complete dish they made was French Onion Soup which was nicely presented at the end of the class. Others were Cream of Chicken Soup and Spinach Flan with Nutmeg.

Between cooking and recipes, history of microwaves oven was learned. The appearing of this appliance was a matter of serendipity – a discovery by accident – while a special USA government project was being developed. Incredibly was the elaboration of a delicious pizza in which students selected the toppings of their choice, but the baking technique was the same for all of them.

                Desserts could not be out of this module. Some of them were Pear Cake, Nut and Raisin Pudding and Mango Sponge Roll. All of them made in the microwaves oven. During the class, students learned about do’s and don’ts when using this type of oven (examples: keep the top of the microwave clear of any objects or never use aluminum foil ; even the best ways to reheat food (example: when using plastic film, it should not be very tight.)

That is a part of what students did during this module. It was a success!

Module based on Bibliography: The Art of Microwave Cooking by Frédéric Lebain / Jean-Paul Paireault. Videos from Internet.

Los hornos de microondas no solo son para calentar alimentos.

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