Microwave Ovens

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Image Credit: djeyewater on stock.xchng (http://www.sxc.hu/browse.phtml?f=view&id=1050057)

Jargon Busters: Microwave ovens

Convection: Convection is the circulation of heat through a gas or liquid. In the case of a microwave oven the gas is oxygen and the circulation is usually aided by a fan.

Defrost: Defrosting is a way of unfreezing frozen goods in preparation for cooking. A good defrost setting will defrost an item all the way to the centre and won't begin cooking it.

Element: An element is a conductive part of an appliance that electricity can be passed through. As electricity is passed into the element it heats up. Elements are found in many home appliances including kettles and ovens.

Halogen light: Also known as tungsten-halogen or quartz-halogen lights. Halogen lights are a type of lamp that operate at higher temperatures than regular lamps, making them useful heating elements and appropriate for microwave cooking.

Preset: A predefined setting for cooking a given food item. The settings will include the power level, the time and other indicators such as stop times where the food must be turned over or stirred.

Radio wave: Radio waves are a type of electromagnetic wave form that is used by many devices. Such devices include cordless phones, wireless Internet routers and of course music radios, among many others.

Range: A range is essentially a stove. Over the range microwaves are mounted over the top of stoves and include extraction fans for the stove below.

Sensor: Sensors read temperatures from within the food you're cooking. Using a sensor allows the appliance to gauge temperatures inside the food item, ensuring an even cook or reheat.

Touchpad: A type of sensor button that is usually flush, rather than convex. Touchpads generally work by detecting the mild electric current from your fingertip.

Wattage: Watts are a unit for measuring electricity. The larger a microwave the more watts it will need to heat food. The higher the wattage (proportionate to the size) the faster a microwave can cook food. A microwave oven's wattage ranges from as low as 350 watts and as high as 1350 watts

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