How to Cook in a Microwave

Cooking in microwave is fun. Your meal is all ready in few minutes. However, some find the whole machine an extra care idiot box while cooking their favorite dish for an important occasion. Here are some tips and thumb rules to help you convert your favorite recipes into microwave.

Before we begin, let us understand how the microwave works. A microwave oven is a device in which food is cooked by the heat produced out of the absorption of microwave energy from water molecules in the food. Microwave ovens operate by agitating the water molecules in the food, causing them to vibrate, which produces heat.

Microwave cooking rules
Microwave cooking evaporates less moisture from the food. So reduce the liquid specified in your conventional recipe by ¼th cup of water from each glass to adapt to microwave. For instance if you are supposed to use 4 cups of water, you will need only 3 in the microwave.

Arrange food in dish so that the thicker part is on the outside and the thinner part inside for more even cooking.

Microwave cooking increases the flavor of herbs and spices. Therefore, make sure to reduce half the amount of spices specified.

Foods containing liquid, sugar and fat cook faster in the device. So reduce the cooking time by ¼ of conventional cooking and then gradually increase until you obtain the desired result.

It also enhances the salt flavoring in food. So reduce the amount of salt by one-third. You can add salt even after the food is cooked.

Keep your microwave clean from inside as if left unclean it may spoil your food, for reheating set the time for 1 min.

Never microwave the dishes covered in Aluminum foil or any metallic material. It may generate sparks.

The microwaves can only penetrate food 1½ inches so larger dishes need the vibrating molecules to move from the outside edges to the center of the food for it to be cooked.

To distribute heat evenly, use a dish with a cone in the center.

Arrange food in dish so that the thicker part is on the outside and the thinner part inside for more even cooking.

Add low fat cheese and other toppings near the end of cooking to keep the top from becoming tough or soggy.

While cooking in the microwave make sure that the dish is covered properly with a lid or plastic wrap.

Always make provisions for the steam to escape from the covered dish. So you can make holes on the plastic wrap or loosen the lid while cooking.

A thumb rule in microwave cooking that you must follow is the '6 minutes per pound rule'. According to this rule 6 minutes per pound will cook most foods including meat, poultry, fruits and vegetables.

Seafood will take lesser time to cook in the microwave.

Set the cooking time of the microwave according to the type of food you are cooking.

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