Induction cooking is the current buzzword in appliances, says Kevin Gralton, owner of KAM Appliances & Home Electronics with locations in Hyannis, Hanover and Nantucket, Mass.
Safer: Unlike gas or electric cooking, induction cooking does not involve generating heat that is transferred to the cookware. Instead, an electric heating element forms an electro-magnetic field that transfers energy directly into the cookware’s metal, creating its own heat. It is considered safe because the cooking surface remains cool.
Faster & Greener: “Induction cooking is faster than gas to cook with and you maintain total control over the level of heat,” Gralton said. “Thirty years ago, people were frightened of induction cooking and the prospect of having to buy all new cookware. Today, the vast majority of cookware has some ferrous metal in it, which is all you need. As long as the cookware will hold a magnet, it contains ferrous metal.”
Some people also consider it a “greener” option. It is more energy efficient than gas or electric because food cooks more quickly and less heat is lost in the process.
Less Pricey: Induction cook tops and ranges currently sell for $800 to $1,500. The price has come down and availability has increased as volume has picked up. The same cook tops and ranges sold for approximately $4,000 five years ago.
With the recent cost reduction “induction cooking is one of the bright spots in the industry,” Gralton said. “It’s something that’s been out there and is just now gaining steam. Chefs are starting to experiment with it and it’s also well-suited to the boating and (recreational vehicle) market.”
Gralton attributes the popularity of induction cooking to the evolution of cookware and people being more comfortable with technology.
The Next Big Thing: Gralton predicts the next big thing in kitchen creations will be greater attention to ergonomics.”Designers are looking at ways to make appliances more ergonomically friendly,” he said. “For example, we’re seeing a single refrigerator door combined with several drawers instead of a second door. And manufacturers across the board are producing them.”