Fast-Food Home Cooking Coming to Your Home
With a grim economy forcing people to forgo dinners out on the town and more Americans eating at home (though it's unclear whether they are doing their or own cooking or cheating by ordering-in), research points to a growing demand for electronics that speed up the preparation of in-home cooking.
Sales of small kitchen electrics, a $3.8 billion market, rose almost 9 percent from 2008 to 2009 while sales of housewares, utensils such as pots, pans and knives, dropped 11.5 percent, according to research conducted by the NPD Group.
Jettisoning antiquated popcorn poppers and George Foreman grills, we can look forward to honing our culinary skills with new, innovative kitchen-helpers entering the marketplace.
Many of these state-of-the-art appliances focus on removing the role of the chef and accounting for any human error. These products include a bread maker that can bake a cake with a press of the button, a toaster oven with a "smart cookie" option to perfectly brown (but not burn) store-bought dough, and microwaves that have settings for pizzas, breakfast sausage and omelets.
A new smarter Panasonic model of microwaves only requires a cook to find their food on a list inside the door and turn the dial to corresponding number. And for the mass of frozen pizza connoisseurs in this country, Cuisinart, DeLonghi and manufacturers across the board, are sporting the "pizza bump" trend, an extra pouch on counter top ovens to fit the circumference of a pizza.
The Los Angeles-based company, Microwave Science, unveiled another new technology at the show called True Cook Plus, a software program where users enter their ZIP code and the product adjusts the temperature to the appropriate elevation.
It's a liberal interpretation of home-cooked food, but these innovations are essentially making fast-food at home better by eliminating the risk of any burning mishaps and, more importantly, saving you money by dining in. (Maybe improving the taste of frozen food is the next discovery).