Friday, September 13, 2013

Solar Oven test on a spring, winter and spring Bob's your uncle, Auckland day!

That is how we describe a spring day in Auckland. On any day we can have 'changeable weather in this wonderful city. It is predicted that we will get to about 16C today and on my sheltered deck it may get to 19C. It's a good day to test the efficacy of my new Solar Flair solar oven. Let's be fair here; the manufacturers make no claim that I am going to be able to cook anything useful on such a day, but test it I will!
I set it up on the deck, with the thermometer inside and a cup of water on the rack. Within ten minutes of the set up the thermo mentor read 70c and then the sun started dancing in and out of the clouds. Still, I was quite impressed. That temperature would be enough to dry fruit or tomatoes. To stop it rising I assume I would only need to reposition the oven, slightly away from the direct sun. As a precaution I need to lock up my crazy Jack Russell, because she is showing far more interest than I would want!

1) 10 minutes into test----70C   Sun intermittent and some wind. (dog locked up!)
2) 20 minutes into test----75C   Cloudy---damn!
3) 30 minutes into test ---75C  Struggling to get above this but the sun is being a bitch!
OK I will update and add to my blog---off shopping now!
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4)  OK, When I cam back an hour later the clouds had slapped the sun away and the temperature had dipped to 50C. IN my view that is pushing it for cooking anything other than a long slow session with drying fruit.
5) The sun came out but was still patchy, raising the temperature into the 60C plus range.

I will not attempt cooking chicken unless I can consistently have temperatures above 100C. I suspect that may not be possible at this time of the year, but I shall keep testing. Maybe the chicken Moroccan curry will have to go in the slow cooker tomorrow! I will keep experimenting.

So while you are all waiting to see if this is going to work, go download ROSKILL on your Kindle or Tablet. Just go to my website to click on the Kindle version of ROSKILL.
So far on crappy days I have managed to get it to 85C--enough to dry fruit but not enough for meat!

Spring day in Auckland with the beautiful flowering Kowai.