If you are at the beginning of your kitchen design journey or looking to replace your existing hob, the wealth of choice available for this much loved and used kitchen staple can seem daunting. With hob technology evolving so much in recent years, there can be a tendency to buy what you know.
What are the options?
“To start, I would strongly recommend visiting a kitchen showroom with live products to experience how different hobs work, the variety of sizes and styles, to get a feel for which you prefer. The latest hobs are so easy to use and control, but you only really find this out by putting them to the test.
Induction hobs are a great choice for passionate cooks, thanks to the precise temperature controllability, fast heat up times, automatic pan recognition and boosting functions for when an extra increase in temperature is required. They can be particularly good if you like to create delicate dishes. Melting chocolate on an induction hob for example is easier as the temperature can be so specifically controlled and there is no need for a water bath. They also fit well within the modern kitchen designs of today, offering a sleek, minimal look that is very easy to keep clean, thanks to the ceramic glass.
The technology used with induction cooking can help produce desired professional results when cooking in your kitchen at home. TempControl is one of the latest innovations to be added to the induction range. Using power levels and sensors to detect the temperature of the pan, it automatically regulates the power on the hob to ensure that the food being cooked is fried at a constant temperature, preventing the dish from burning if the power is not turned down.
Induction hobs are ideal if you have young children, as it is the pan that heats up and not the hob, meaning no scorching hot surfaces are ever exposed. Look out for models with a ‘flush fit’, meaning that the hob is enclosed by the worksurface for a sleek finish with no exposed edges. Induction also has other family friendly benefits such as safety locks to prevent the hob being turned on accidentally. Induction hobs can be connected wirelessly to a hood for intelligent extraction, creating the ideal cooking environment that is free from grease, smells and vapours.
Gas is a visible heat source, making it easy to control, as well as adjust. Its design is also one that we are probably most familiar with in the kitchen. Cooking with gas provides an intensive heat that can be great for Oriental style cooking; as well as dishes that require high temperatures, such as flash frying. As with induction, design is equally important, with traditional styles that previously rose out of the worksurface being replaced with more modern, flush or near-flush glass designs that sit inline with the worktop for a sleeker look. This is great if you desire this type of hob but also want a minimal design.
Is there an option available if I want the best of both worlds, with more than one type of hob?
Absolutely, it is possible to combine a variety of hob styles in different width selections, which is perfect if you are looking to customise your hob, suiting it to your lifestyle. Barbecue grills, Tepan-Yaki plates, induction and fryers are all available providing great flexibility and suiting a variety cooking styles.
Are there any key considerations from a design or installation point of view that we should be thinking about?
When selecting a hob, extraction is key. Depending on the type of hob you select, this will also effect your cooker hood decision. Again, a kitchen showroom with live products would definitely be worth a visit as you will get to experience how different hobs and extractors work together.”
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