Unconventional Low Carbon Cooking Methods
Cooking might not make up the biggest part of the pie when it comes to domestic energy consumption, but it's one of the most unavoidable. We all like to eat - and most of what we eat takes energy to prepare in one form or another. And while Planet Green's guide on how to go green in the kitchen might help you with energy saving tips, there are some more extreme methods of green food prep out there.
Flash cooking using a giant fresnel lens, as Denise Rojas of GreenPowerScience does here, may seem a little over the top for most of us, but read on for other ways to cut carbon and keep eating. Click below the fold to learn how to build a pizza box solar oven, use the earth as a crock pot, and even steam salmon on a car engine - all part of our video round up of crazy ways to cook without cooking the climate.
Build Your Own Pizza Box Solar Oven
Maybe giant lenses aren't your thing? Fear not - you can build a lower-tech solar cooker using little more than a pizza box, some foil, glue and tape. It's unlikely that a pizza box cooker is going to meet most of your cooking needs, but once you've experimented with this as 'proof of concept', you can always graduate to one of TreeHugger's top 5 solar oven picks to do some serious cooking with the sun.
This one might be a harder sell to all the hardcore greenies out there - after all, how the heck can cooking with gasoline be green? But we all know that the internal combustion engine creates a lot of waste heat, and if you have to drive, you may as well put that heat to good use. This car-cooked salmon salad recipe appeared on the Food Network a little while ago - and it doesn't look half bad. Interested? Then you should also check out the exhaust burger or the exhaust cooker. And if you don't drive, or you just don't fancy motor oil encrusted fish, you could always join the debate about whether cooking in your dishwasher really saves energy or not. Anyone know the embodied energy of aluminum foil, by the way?
Cooking with Geothermal Heat
Now this next one is only practical if you happen to live near to a steaming crater - but traditional cultures around the world have used the earth's heat to cook meat, fish, and vegetables. This video from the Azores Islands in Portugal shows how food is lowered into hot springs and allowed to slow cook for hours - kind of like turning the earth in a humungous crock pot.