Cooking on gas or electric - which is best for you?
Your choice of cooker is nearly as personal as your choice of underwear. It is likely to be influenced by your previous experience, by the type of food you cook, by your budget or even what your mother or grandmother swore by. When choosing a new cooker many of us simply stick to what we are used to, but take some time to do your research as cooking technology advances all the time and something you didn`t expect could turn out to be the most suitable cooker for you. Depending on your kitchen design, many people prefer to combine an electric oven with a gas hob, which also allows you the advantage of being able to site your oven at waist height. If your budget can stretch to it, you could try one of the new modular hobs, making it possible to combine gas and electric burners in one unit for the best of both worlds.
Electric ovens are extremely desirable for their multifunction properties, allowing you to select heat from the top of the oven or from the bottom, or both, to choose fan-assistance or static use and to allow simultaneous use of the grill. Electric ovens are also appreciated for their even circulation of heat, avoiding burns in hotspots.
Electric hobs are substantially easier to clean than gas, with a flat glass surface which looks sleek with modern kitchen designs. Even better are ultra-modern induction hobs, which never really heat up the cooker unit itself so food cannot burn onto the surface. Furthermore, this lack of surface heat makes induction hobs very safe for children. Traditionally the disadvantage of electric has been a slow response to controls, but modern units are getting quicker all the time, whilst induction hobs boast comparable response times to gas.
One of the main benefits of a gas cooker is economical. Whilst an electric cooker consumes fewer units of energy, gas tends to cost less than electricity thereby generating an overall saving. Gas cookers are popular with professional cooks for their instant and accurate response to controls. When you turn the knob up, the burner is immediately hotter and the same when it comes to reducing the heat, making it far easier to avoid burning accidents. In appearance terms, gas hobs are nowhere near as sleek as their electric counterparts, which can make them more difficult to clean but their looks suit a rustic or traditional style kitchen, or if you have a very long run of work surface which needs a focus to break up the line.
On the down side, gas cookers must be professionally installed to meet safety requirements and to avoid jeopardizing the integrity of your home insurance policy. Furthermore, although gas hobs are desirable for their functionality, gas cookers have a reputation for uneven heat circulation, traditionally due to the lack of a fan. However, good quality modern gas ovensare much improved upon the kind used by previous generations, with well regulated thermostats and convenient fan-assistance.