Functions And Capabilities Of The Airfryer (All you need to know)
Modern kitchen appliances will help every cooking lover to acquire the skills of a chef. The desire to buy all the devices on the market is quite understandable, but maybe it is worth choosing one, but universal device? This is exactly what the airfryer is.
What is an airfryer?
On first acquaintance, a technique with this name resembles a large glass pan covered with a specially designed lid. It turns out that this is technically thought out – the heating element and the fan are located here. This neighborhood allows you to create air swirls and affect the prepared dish. Then everything is simple: depending on the selected mode, the products will languish, fry, bake, boil or stew.
The bowl is made of special glass – shatterproof, transparent, and heat-resistant. With all this design, the flask is easy to get out of the body itself.
There is one more element in the device – a metal ring. It helps to increase the volume of the bowl (if necessary, simply install it on top of it).
How is food preparation carried out?
The principle of operation is based on the convection process: the heating element heats the air flows carried by the fan. Their temperature varies between 140 °F and 500 °F. The speed is constantly changing – this is necessary so that overdrying does not occur. Therefore, the dish will be cooked evenly on all sides.
You can adjust the speed and temperature parameters yourself, but basically, the owners trust the built-in timer, which will turn off at the right time.
The airfryer should be started according to the algorithm.
- The device must be connected to the power supply.
- The foodstuffs necessary for the planned dish are put into the bowl.
- The bowl must be hermetically closed with a lid (for more details on how to do this, see the instructions).
- On the control panel, set the cooking parameters: the required temperature and convection speed, as well as the time, and turn on the device.
- Convection (fan inside) starts after the device reaches the set temperature. It is the currents of hot air that cook the dish inside. At the end of the program, a signal usually sounds.
- It is recommended to disconnect the airfryer from the network after the fan has completely stopped and the device has cooled down a little.
When choosing an airfryer, you should, first of all, be guided by the technical characteristics of the devices, and only then look at their appearance. According to the type of heating element, aero grills with metal and halogen heating elements are distinguished.
The metal heating element has a not very high operating temperature, but great inertia. Such a heater heats up slowly and cools down just as slowly. This must be taken into account during preparation. The main advantages of this type of heating element are their durability.
Attention: There is the wiring inside the shell. Therefore, if it is damaged, it is impossible to touch the switch on a heater, it can shock.
The halogen airfryer has a heating element of the same name. It is a halogen-filled tube. The gas heats up instantly. Such a device is considered environmentally friendly. Such heating element is inexpensive. Among the disadvantages can be noted the short service life of the halogen tube and uneven heating of food.
By the format of the control elements, mechanical and electronic devices are distinguished. The mechanical airfryer has push-button and rotary controls. Such a device costs much less. But its functionality is much poorer: it is difficult to establish the exact temperature, the entire scale is divided into 4-8 divisions, intermediate values are set approximately.
Electronic ovens are rich in options. Thanks to the electronic control, the setting of the operating parameters is as accurate as possible.
The cover of the airfryer can be removable. Accordingly, it can be removed, cleaned, washed, and put in order. This is a plus. But there is also a minus: when you open it during cooking, hot air bursts out from under it, which can burn.
The second option is a cover on the bracket. It can be safely opened at the right time. But changing the bowl to a container of a larger diameter will not work here.
What can you cook with the Airfryer?
Many interesting dishes can be prepared with this device. Nevertheless, the airfryer holds the palm in frying and baking. Usually, his signature dishes are meat dishes – grilled, they are obtained with a ruddy and crispy crust.
First courses, pizza, cereals, pies, hot sandwiches, smoked products – all this can also be done in this device. And besides, many users have adapted to using the airfryer for preserving and smoking food.
The airfryer is ideal for dieters, as all excess fat during cooking flows into a special tray. A ruddy crust does not appear due to oil but under the influence of hot air.
All products retain their vitamins during cooking. Interestingly, even baked vegetables do not lose their natural color.
So, this device can replace several other types of equipment at once:
- double boiler;
- microwave oven;
- electric hanger;
- dryer for vegetables;
- yogurt maker;
- sterilizer for cans (canning).
Finally, the flask itself can be used as a saucepan if you are planning to prepare the first course.
Functions of the airfryer
Depending on the model, the device may have numerous functions.
- The program for maintaining the temperature will allow you not to worry about the cooling of the prepared food.
- Each unit has a temperature control function. By the way, the sensor regulating this process will not allow the technology to overheat.
- Like any other kitchen appliance, this one can also operate at both minimum and maximum speeds. This rule also applies to setting the speed of airflows.
- With the delayed start function, you can prepare the dish when it is convenient for the user. In mechanical models, a delay is given for an hour, but electric ones will allow you to move the process for a day (put food in the morning and try dinner in the evening).
- Some models are self-cleaning. This greatly simplifies the maintenance of the equipment.
- The special function of smoking will allow you to cook the appropriate products in this mode – fish, meat, cheese, and so on. To do this, you should additionally stock up on sawdust from fruit trees or blackcurrant branches. The meat is additionally marinated before smoking (at least 12 hours). The sawdust is poured into a deep dish, a tray is placed on top for draining the fat, and a grate on which the meat is placed. They cook it in this mode for an hour, then turn it over and repeat for another hour.
- With the function of a double boiler, everything is a little controversial – it is not advised to use it often, since the device has a high concentration of steam, and it can simply fail.
- There are models with a stirring function – for this, the unit is equipped with a special stirrer.
Advantages and disadvantages of the airfryer
Having weighed the pros and cons of such a device as an airfryer, it will be possible to understand how much it is suitable for your kitchen. So, among the bonuses:
- cooking food faster than an electric stove;
- the dish turns out to be more useful since you do not need to use fat to prepare it;
- nothing burns in the device;
- you can cook several dishes at the same time;
- the process takes place practically without human participation;
- the ability to sterilize jars and preserve food supplies.
The main disadvantage of the device is its cumbersomeness – in a small kitchen, you will need to think about its placement in advance. You should not take the small option, because it should include kitchen utensils in which food is usually prepared (for example, a saucepan, frying pan, and pots). Another drawback – in terms of cooking speed, the unit loses to a gas stove, but this is compensated by the quality of the final dishes.
The power consumption of the appliance is approximately 1 kWh, like a kettle or iron. This should also be remembered for those who choose between cooking on the gas stove or the airfryer.
What to look for when buying an airfryer: expert opinion
Before going to the store, you should study the range of airfryers, considering some of their characteristics.
- The volume of the flask. The best option is 8-9 liters. This size is enough for any dish, including baked goods. You don’t even need extra utensils.
- Type of heating element. As mentioned above, two options are possible: a flask with galgen and a metal heating element of a traditional format. Halogen heating elements are fast and efficient, they are not affected by aggressive media. But it will have to be changed every 2-3 years. The metal heating element is inert, consumes more energy, but lasts for years.
- Cover fixing. The lids on the bracket hold in place better when preparing food. However, the removable cover is easier to clean.
- Type of management. Convection grills come with mechanical (relatively speaking, push-button) and electronic control. The mechanics allow you to adjust the minimum parameters: temperature and cooking time. Electronic grills have more options. Here, in addition to temperature and time, you can set the fan speed, choose from preset cooking programs, set delayed start, timer, etc.
- The power of the device. It determines the heating rate, maximum temperature, and energy consumption. Compact, simple in functional terms, the airfryer is designed for 1 kW. More serious devices with extended functionality and a large flask volume have an average power of 1.6-1.8 kW.
- Complete set. Together with the device itself, the set may include useful or just pleasant additions: baking sheets, grill grates, spatulas, scrapers for cleaning. But here you need to understand that these are not gifts, the cost of these items is included in the price of the device.
Functions And Capabilities Of The Airfryer (All you need to know)
The airfryer is an interesting alternative to traditional cooking techniques. Many, having tried it once, no longer return to the stove, oven, or multicooker. Now there is a fairly large selection of such devices on the market.