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July 01, 2010

Six Months

Mmmmmmm... no? Dominic Armato

Six months to the day that we've been without a microwave. And I'm surprised to find that I don't miss it one bit.

I wasn't trying to make a point, to myself or anybody else. The new place just didn't have a microwave, and we never quite got around to buying one.

Suddenly it's six months later and I can count on one hand the times when I've thought it would have been nice to have one. Non-liquid leftovers. That's about it.

I was never anti-microwave and I'm not now. I'll happily use one again in the future, I'm sure. But I'm in absolutely no hurry.


I haven't had one for over four years, and I don't ever even think of getting one... forget they even exist. That said, I also don't have a dishwasher, so occasionally I remember it would be nice to be able to reheat leftovers in the serving dish instead of using (and washing) an extra pot.

Coffee. When I can't warm up my coffee immediately, I get highly unhappy. In Phoenix, you can just put it outside for 90 seconds.

Timely post for me! Our 16 year old microwave finally died a couple of weeks ago and we haven't yet replaced it. I'm with Anon Man, not being able to heat up my coffee has been the saddest part but otherwise, I hardly miss it! And I LOVE all the counter space I suddenly have. (I have noticed though that some leftovers have gone uneaten because it seems like too much trouble to heat them on the stove - and it's too hot some days to turn on the oven).

The one thing I do use a microwave for is for reheating leftovers. The house we bought happened to have a nice built-in-over-the-stove kind, and I tend to make army-sized amounts of casseroles. Having a nice handy "reheat casserole" setting makes for great lunchtimes!

Yeesh. Couldn't live without mine. I depend too heavily on leftovers. I also do a quick steam of frozen edamame beans in the microwave (only 50 seconds!) and quick soft-boiled eggs. Heck, I use it for all sorts of things.

More power to you, though.

I have 2 places, one without a microwave (though I do live next to my B&B landlords with a super-duper microwave in the kitchen - makes every one I've owned seem pathethic ... but he's a chef). I've found that the oven is fine, in some ways superior (crispiness!), merely not as quick.

And since I drink tea, not coffee, hot water on the stove works

Yeah. Also timely post for me. Mine broke about a year ago and I never got around to replacing it. I never miss it. Now I am temporarily moving to another state to go back to school, and my niece is moving in to my place here in Honolulu. I have been debating whether or not I should buy a new microwave to make her life easier as she isn't really fond of cooking. I have finally settled on just letting her get one if she wants it. Anyway, timely post.

Melting chocolate. Lets me mix up a pan of brownies from scratch in the morning and bring them into the office still warm. I can't imagine doing that in a double boiler.

I have two - big one and small countertop one. Used so far today for: softening brown sugar and frozen butter (peach cobbler) re-heating a couple of fish tacos, and melting cubes of frozen stock. We're cooking and baking for 30 people for tomorrow and when all four burners and both ovens are in use, they do come in handy. I use them for par-baking potatoes,warming liquids, steaming artichokes and corn, and even making rice.

I've lived both with and without a microwave for extended periods of time. When I lived without one, I didn't miss it. When I do have one, I generally use it for reheating food, but even then I use it sparsely since I do like cold Chinese leftovers...

This whole talk about microwaves just reminds of the first episode of TCM, where Hubert Keller and company were absolutely mystified at the contraption.

I don't want to be that guy who's always mentioning that he doesn't own a TV, but I haven't had a microwave for many years now, and I don't miss it. Yeah, it is kind of a pain when you're reheating leftovers, and you have the occasional packaged food item that is expressly made for microwaving so is tricky to make conventionally, but now that I've been away from microwaved food for a while, the distinctive smell/taste/texture of it makes me a little nauseated. I ain't going back.

I use the microwave all the time, but there's very few dishes that I heat in the microwave and then eat immediately. Leftovers of something with a high water content is about it. Generally, my use of the microwave is to quickly heat something halfway, and then finish the heating on the stovetop or the toaster oven or wherever. Used that way, the microwave is a time (and BTU) saver. It's also handy with something like leftover pizza, where oven reheating can burn the crust while pure microwave heating leaves you with a soggy mess. Half-and-half gets you the best of both worlds.

I also use it to make food for my son. Rather than buy baby food, we just have frozen cubes of pureed fruits and vegetables in the freezer. Defrost, mix, serve.

Sorry, Dom -- gotta have it for some general and specialized purposes. We microwave the usual stuff (leftover coffee and reheating cooked food). My favorite specialized use is to make enchiladas. I fry the tortillas in oil (on the stove, natch) and cook the rolled enchiladas in the microwave. They come out much better than in the oven, where the tortilla will toughen up too much. When I'm too hurried to grill them, I also like microwaving a hot dog for a snack.

I've never bought any product that could only be cooked in the microwave (except popcorn) so it's not essential for that reason.

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