The microwave is a brilliant invention that saves us a lot of time. Food heats up faster in it than on the stove or in the oven, and you don’t have to keep an eye over the process. Simply choose the mode and set the timer, and you can look forward to your next meal. However, not all dishes can be microwaved. Some of them may degrade throughout the cooking process, while others may produce dangerous substances to our health.
Nutralina has put together a list of foods for which the microwave is a true enemy. As an added bonus, we’ll provide a list of small kitchen tricks that this popular home gadget is ideal for.
Some vegetables, fruits, and mushrooms
Broccoli loses much of its nutritional value when heated in the microwave. It is preferable to steam it. This will maintain the flavor of the food as well as the majority of the vitamins and minerals.
Greens (such as beet leaves) contain unique characteristics that can catch fire when heated in the microwave. As a result, instead of a lovely lunch, you will have burnt food on your table, and your household appliances will be ruined.
In spinach and beets, electromagnetic radiation causes the development of toxic nitrosamines. These compounds have the potential to cause cancer.
In a picturesque but dangerous experiment, fresh grapes and gooseberries are microwaved into plasma pieces.
When chili peppers are cooked in the microwave, the capsaicin, which gives them their intense hotness, begins to evaporate. The room will fill with puffs of acrid smoke as soon as the microwave door is opened.
Meat, fish, and poultry
Preservatives are included in processed meats, and when exposed to electromagnetic radiation, they change into harmful chemical components such as oxidized cholesterol.
In the microwave, the crunchy crust of fried chicken becomes a wet, disagreeable coating, while the meat itself becomes unevenly cooked.
Anyone who has tried heating a fish dish in the microwave knows how unpleasant this is. For one thing, the entire living area begins to smell “not-so-fantastic.” Second, the fish degrades into something undesirable. For example, if you microwave salmon, it will lose all moisture and become dry and hard.
Liquids, oils, and thick soups
Watery soup can be microwaved without problems. Thick pureed soup, on the other hand, is a different matter. In a while, the dish will start to explode with soup drips that will spray within the gadget hopelessly. This is due to the uneven heating of the liquid in the tray. Stir the soup once per minute to avoid this effect. You may also place a wooden spoon or stick in the soup bowl.
In the microwave, infant formula, baby food, and breast milk do not heat evenly. As a result, hot patches might form in the liquid, potentially burning the baby’s tongue, mouth, or throat.
The microwave completely ruins the coffee’s taste. This drink contains no harmful substances, however it is only suitable for individuals who appreciate bitter and sour flavors. If you really want to finish a cup of your favorite cold drink, just add ice to it.
A cup of plain water might also surprise you. The temperature of the liquid rises in a microwave, but the bubbles that accompany the boiling process do not always form on the surface. If you place a tea bag or a spoon in such water, the liquid will quickly boil and the cup may shatter.
Oils such as olive, grape, canola, and sesame are fats rather than liquids. As a result, the oil in the microwave simply will not reach the proper temperature.
Pizza, Chinese food, and rice
It’s difficult to imagine a more unpleasant dish than microwaved pizza. The crisp edges become wet and sticky, and the cheese has the strength of concrete and the feel of rubber. This meal contains nothing dangerous, yet it will not make you happy. It is preferable to reheat the meal on a hot pan or in a hot oven.
Do not microwave food in the same containers that it was brought in. Cardboard boxes sometimes contain harmful materials such as glue, ink, wax, plastic, or metal, and they have the ability to cause a real fire in your house.
Microwaving rice always ends in an unexpected result. If the rice has been held at room temperature for a long period of time or has spent more than a day in the cold, it is best to throw it away.
Rice grains contain the bacteria Bacillus cereus, which may survive in food after it has been heated. The microwave oven does not reach a high enough temperature to destroy these bacteria, which might result in severe poisoning. The same holds true for many starchy meals.
Even when it’s cold, Chinese food keeps its taste and charm. These dishes can be reheated if preferred, but not in the microwave. The issue is with the components themselves. The microwave turns this tasty food into something sticky, wet, and disgusting.
Bonus: magical microwave
While you’ve properly read the whole list of foods that should not be microwaved, you don’t have to get rid of this home gadget. A microwave is a handy appliance that may be used for a variety of reasons.
Frying seeds and nuts: Place these ingredients in a microwave-safe ceramic container, add a drop of oil, and microwave for 30 seconds. Cooking time for seeds and nuts is 3 minutes.
Peeling garlic quickly: To avoid pain while removing the skins from garlic cloves, simply place the garlic in the microwave for 15-20 seconds.
Cutting onions: To minimize needless tears when cutting onions, microwave them for 45 seconds. This will kill the enzymes that produce the corrosive gas that irritates the eyes.
Peeling veggies: Zucchini and root vegetables might be difficult to peel at times. To speed up the peeling process, place the veggies in the microwave for 2-3 minutes on the lowest power level. After that, removing the skin will be much easy.
Making a cappuccino without an expensive coffee machine: Pour the milk into a glass or ceramic jar with a closeable lid (it should be half-full) and vigorously shake it. It takes 30 to 60 seconds for the milk to froth. Then, for another 30 seconds, place the jar in the microwave and watch the foam rise. Simply mix it into the coffee and your cappuccino is ready.
Tip: Experts recommend reheating a meal just once:
The longer food is held, the more likely it may acquire harmful bacteria and microorganisms. Food will not hurt your health if it is properly prepared. However, you need get a kitchen thermometer to monitor the temperatures of foods after they have been heated.
Also, carefully stir the food to ensure that there are no patches with cold components that might serve as a breeding ground for bacteria. The more frequently you reheat food, the less appetizing it becomes – veggies become mush, and meat becomes rubbery.
Based on your own experience, would you add anything to our first or second list? Share with us in the comments below.