A stove is the centerpiece of every kitchen. In addition to the refrigerator, a stove is typically the largest appliance in the kitchen and can also be the most expensive appliance in this area of the house. A stove will be where most of your meals are cooked and is the very reason for the inclusion of a kitchen in the house. Thoughtful planning and consideration should be made for the kitchen layout to include the size and location of a stove. Given the necessary utility connections that must be made in order to install a stove, many of the other features of a kitchen’s design will be contingent upon the placement of a stove.
A stove for all seasons
There are several important elements that must be considered before, during and after the installation of a stove. If designing a house from the ground up, architects must know early in the house design process if your home will have a gas stove, a stove with an electric range or if you plan to have the contemporary design of a dual oven and separate stove-top configuration (found in many professional kitchens). When replacing or buying a newer stove in an existing home there are also many options to consider as well.
When buying a stove it is important to understand some of the different terms that may be used in reference to this kitchen appliance. Some may refer to the appliance as an oven or a range in addition to using the term stove. The most consistent definitions that can be found define the appliance in the following way. A stove refers to the top portion of the appliance where the burners are located. The oven is the bottom portion of the appliance encompassing the boxed enclosure where food is cooked. Finally, the range is most commonly defined as the full appliance with both the oven and the stove-top. Nowadays, these terms are all used interchangeably and most appliances are sold as the full unit including both the stove-top and the oven. As a buyer you should clarify these points if you are buying without viewing the appliance. Some of the more professional grade appliances may sell the units separately because they are often installed in different areas of the kitchen. For purposes of clarity, this article will use the term “stove” to refer to the complete appliance including both a stove-top with burners and an oven unless otherwise noted in the context.
Plan on how much money you want to spend on the entire kitchen and then for the stove. There are many different types of stoves that may change the cost of your kitchen and cause additional expense. A budget may help you decide on which stove to select. Planning the budget from the start will help you move your concept ideas to a finished product more quickly and efficiently.
Stoves come in a variety of styles, colours and sizes. The popularity of home cooking has created a variety of stove styles in order to accommodate any chef. Whether you are a home cook that manages the daily meals of a small family or a professional chef that broadcasts culinary classes from a home kitchen, there is a stove that will fit your needs.
Two of the most popular styles of stove-tops include the gas burner and the electric smooth top burner. There are many benefits to cooking on a gas burner. A gas burner will heat the cooking vessel evenly and allow your food to cook evenly. However, if natural gas is expensive in your area this may cause your monthly utility bill to be higher if you use the gas burners to cook a lot. An electric smooth top burner is sleek and usually cleans up much more easily than its gas counterpart. The electric smooth top burner has its drawbacks. The top can be scratched or even crack if iron skillets or any stone type of cooking container is used. Food that boils over and burns on a smooth top burner can sometime be difficult to clean and mess up the the cooking surface. There are numerous cleaners on the market that are specific to smooth top burners that make cleaning easier and preserve the surface of the stove. There are a few other stove-top styles to include an electric coil burners and induction burners. The choice of a stove-top relies solely on the cook. Their style and frequency of cooking coupled with their preference of heating choices will determine the type of stovetop to get.
The next options to consider for your stove are the types of ovens to choose from. The most common type are either electric or gas. This comes down to a matter of cooking preference. The cost of monthly utility bills for gas can vary depending on the cost of natural gas in your area but these costs benefits or impacts are negligible in most areas. Another type of oven that is gaining popularity is the convection oven. This oven uses fans to circulate the heated air within the oven allowing food to cook more evenly across its surface.
Once you have selected the type of stove-top and oven you would like to have the final choice will be the colour of your appliance. Typically homeowners will coordinate all appliances to one style. The most popular colours in contemporary kitchens are white, black or silver.