Cooking with a Solar Oven

I am a big fan of solar ovens for a number of reasons, including the following.

  • The fuel is free and readily available.
  • They are inexpensive and easy to make.

    Parabolic solar cooker

  • They are easy to use.
  • As long as the sun is shining they will work.
  • They create no smoke or odors other than the food cooking.
  • In the summer the heat stays outside.
  • Once you learn the principal you can make one almost anywhere.  I am aware of a situation in which one was made from an old tire and a window pane.

The downsides that I have found are

  • Food takes about twice as long as normal to cook.
  • They bulky, not good for backpacking.
  • They have to be used outside, can create security issues.

    Box style

  • Won’t work on cloudy or rainy days.

With summer just starting I would encourage each of you to build and learn how to use a solar oven.  Find out which recipes work best.  There are many different designs for solar ovens including the box, parabolic and funnel. Take a look at the website http://solarcookers.org/index.html ran by Solar Cookers International, they provide some great resources.

I am currently starting to experiment with solar funnel cookers.  The results will be post in the near future.

Howard

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