A kitchen may be many things to its owner: a hub for gatherings, a command center, a venue for showcasing great works of culinary delight. Regardless of its additional roles in the home, the kitchen is first and foremost a room where separate ingredients are combined to produce full-fledged meals.
Unless you have an open fire pit in your home, every kind of cooking or heating activity is going to require an appliance of some kind. In most homes, a cooktop and an oven, either separate or combined in a range, are musts. Microwaves have become standard, too. Yet the range of cooking and heating appliances available to the modern cook extends much further.
Old technologies have made a comeback and new ones are offering homeowners more conveniences. Americans have welcomed warming drawers into the fold, but we're taking a little longer to warm up to induction cooking. Dual-fuel ranges combine the best of both electric and gas fuels, while speed-cook ovens combine the shortened time frame of a microwave with the cooking ability of a wall oven.
Power is as important in your kitchen as in your car, with Btus rivaling horsepower for household bragging rights. All that heat and energy requires ventilation to remove the grease and odor, and today's range hoods are works of art as well as healthful necessities.
Hand-in-hand with the coffee craze came a new generation of coffee and espresso makers designed to provide restaurant- or café-quality coffees, lattes, Americanos, macchiatos, cappuccinos and espressos. Like other high-end appliances, many of these can be built right into your cabinets.
Grills and griddles, convection and steam, slide-in and built-in the list of features to choose from seems endless. Whether or not you know a burner from a broiler from a blower, we'll show you everything you need to know.