One thing’s certain. A microwave is one such kitchen appliance we cannot function without today. So yes, using it the right way is the need of the hour. I am here to speak about the common microwave mistakes you don’t know yet are making.
Getting yourself the best microwave does not resolve the problem. There are DOs and DONTs to be followed. Have you ever had charred popcorn? Hot chocolate eruptions? Or fireworks? These are all results of the microwave mistakes you are committing. The scary part here is that some minor blunders can lead to dangerous effects, unknowingly, of course! Therefore, it is dominant that you follow my microwave checklist to ensure no damages or unpleasant circumstances whatsoever.
10 Common Microwave Mistakes You’re Making
1. You are not covering your food
Microwaving your food uncovered has more than one pitfall. The heat circulation in the appliance makes it a must to keep the food covered for various reasons. Firstly, it will help in heating food evenly. Covering the food will also ensure the food does not get overcooked. Secondly, uncovered food in the appliance also leads to food splatters. This means the microwave will get dirty with food specks and, as a result, lead to bacteria growth.
Regardless of the food quantity and ingredient, always keep the food covered. But remember to use only a microwave-safe lid. You must also avoid using airtight lids because they can get difficult to open when the food is hot.
2. Leaving the food unattended
Here’s one of the common microwave mistakes, and hey, it doesn’t sound like a crime, right? Rather, it sounds like a good time to indulge in something else while your food is getting cooked or heated. But walking away and leaving food unwatched can get a bit risky. According to the National Institutes of Health, leaving popcorn unattended can cause it to get overheated and eventually cause fire as well.
Well, I am not asking you to constantly peep inside but don’t stray too far away. Keep an eye and stay close by.
3. Microwaving hard-boiled eggs
Oh, this is a disaster! I know a microwave is the most convenient way to reheat food but putting in the boiled eggs is the most foolish thing to do. The reason being, the moisture inside the egg will begin to heat and lead to steam build-up. As a result, it will create pressure which will then cause the egg to explode. So, you will have egg splashes everywhere in the appliance, a stinky smell and a ruined and rubbery egg. Nothing about this whole picture is pleasing, right? And let me warn you, it could take days to get rid of this egg stench.
4. Not twirling and twisting the food ingredients.
Even the best microwave oven can fail to evenly reheat your food straight out of the refrigerator. The heating mechanism of the appliance is such that it reaches the centre of the food last. The surface of your food will get heated up quickly, but the interior will remain cold, even if you keep it for a longer time. But this is not a big problem. It’s as simple as just playing around with your food. Make use of a spoon or a fork and just twist and twirl the food.
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5. Boiling/Overheating water
While there’s no harm in boiling water, please make sure to do it in a kettle and not in a microwave oven. Fiercely heated water shows no signs of danger but results in menacing consequences. The stored heat explodes once the cup is touched or moved. The smooth surface generally gives no signs of eruption. Therefore, you need to be careful and keep track of it.
6. Using ceramic bowls
Using ceramic dishes generally seem to be a good option since they are microwave safe. But here comes the bad news. There is a substantial risk involved in using them. Ceramics preserve the porous nature of clay. This means they can soak moisture swiftly, and this can be a huge problem. Once the microwave oven is turned on, this moisture will heat up, and the ceramic will blow up.
7. You are unfreezing meat in the microwave
All you non-veggies in the house, here’s one of the most common microwave mistakes you are making. Okay, not like defrosting meat involves any life-threatening hazards, but the problem with doing it is that it won’t cook the meat evenly. The edges will get heated up, and the centre will remain ice cold. Also, thawing meat in the microwave oven can give birth to bacterial growth. So, the best way to defrost meat is to remove it from the freezer and keep it out for a couple of hours.
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8. Putting in plastic containers
We are all aware of what a bad idea it is to put plastic containers in a microwave oven. Yet, people get reckless about it and use plastic containers at times. Of course, the appliance emits out high heat to cook or heat the food. This can out-turn the plastic to melt and thereby discharge harmful chemicals. Consuming the food from those plastic containers is risking your health big time.
So yes, you must use nothing but only glass or microwave-safe containers. Also, you must keep away silver foil and metal to ensure there are no unpleasant circumstances.
Oh, and this also means you cannot reheat food in takeaway containers. It’s always plastic.
9. Not cleaning the microwave oven regularly
Yes, we could get slothful and not clean the appliance. But hey, it is really important to do so. No matter how much you try to avoid, the microwave oven is prone to have tiny food crumbs and bits. If you don’t eradicate these particles, it will cause germs and bacteria in the appliance. Wouldn’t that go into the food you put in next? Gosh, what a creepy feeling!
Wiping the appliance inside thoroughly after every use is a great idea. But deep cleaning it once a week is a must. Get on my blog right now – 10 Smart Ways to Clean a Microwave Oven, to know more on how to go about in the most time-consuming way.
10. Heating breast milk in the microwave
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) states that warming up breast milk in the microwave oven is a strict no. The consequences are the same as defrosting meat. Expect uneven heating with hot spots in the milk. This could result in your baby being uncomfortable while having it or even burning their mouth.
One easy way to heat breast milk is to place it in a vessel of hot water. Heat water on the gas stove, and then let the bottle sit in for a while until it gets hot. To ensure its uniform temperature, stir the milk bottle at intervals.
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That was a swift list of 10 common microwave mistakes I bet most of you are making. While you are at it, they may not seem like big blunders but trust me, it is.
Not following the safety protocols of the appliance can have deadly consequences. So don’t just get yourself the best microwave, be vigilant about the DONTs and follow them to the fullest.
Put an end to these microwave mistakes today!
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