So I have been questioning why I even own a microwave lately. I mainly use it to heat water to add to bread dough and to melt butter on occasion. Oh wait, I also often reheat muffins for the kid. But I don’t like it for reheating most leftovers. I know they are supposed to be super convenient. And I guess if I bought any of those microwave dinners/meals that they sell in the freezer section, it might come in handy. But since I don’t commute to an office anymore, I find I can eat way healthier foods that I actually enjoy, so I haven’t bought one of those in at least six months.
Food just doesn’t taste as good after it is microwaved in most cases. It is definitely worth it just to turn on the stove or oven, and it really doesn’t take that much more time. The microwave is terrible for meats. It dries them out and makes them rubbery or tough. And reheat something fried or baked and you get a soggy mess. Even on days where I refuse to turn my oven on because my apartment heats up in minutes and takes hours to cool off, I use a toaster oven set on the bake or broil function, depending on the food. And let’s just talk sauces. Sauces break in the microwave. It doesn’t matter if you add a little water or reduce the power, you are not going to get the same texture when you nuke a sauce.
Have you ever reheated stir-fried rice in a microwave. Yuck. And it reheats in five minutes or so on the stove top. Plus, you get more “crispies,” as my husband calls them. Yes, it messes up a skillet, and it takes 3 minutes longer than the microwave. But it tastes so much better. It tastes like you just whipped up the dish fresh again!
The microwave is also a nightmare to keep clean. Let’s face it, if I’m too lazy to pull out a pan and turn the stove top on, I’m probably not super careful about making sure I have dishes that provide ventilation without allowing splatter. Meats and beans pop. Sauces sputter. Do yourself a favor and go look at the top of the inside of your microwave. I clean mine every couple of weeks, and I can promise you a picture would gross you out most days. And I don’t even use mine that often these days! Imagine if I used it every day. Don’t even look at the one in your office break room, or you may be resorting to cold sandwiches for a while.