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Solar Cooking, Solar Ovens, Haybox Cooking (retained heat method)

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  • #16
    Re: haybox cooking or retained heat method

    Originally posted by rjprrt View Post
    a solar cooker can be built out of foil, glue and a cardboard box. you need a box about a cubic yard, glue and foil. cut the top and bottom out. then cut the box along a seam. this will give you one long piece of material. glue the foil on one side. get a metal pot and paint it black. use heat resistant paint.
    on a sunny day set the box up so you have an enclousure. point it in the direction of the sun. put the pot inside the enclosure. cook. this will probably not boil water but it will cook. kinda of like a crock pot. rotate the enclosure with the suns movement.
    This type of homemade solar cooker may work really well in New Mexico or Southern California and be a practical and efficient cooking method for many other areas of the country and world. However, when my Girl Scout Troop tried it many years ago in New Jersey it did not work for us. Before depending on this or any other cooking method during an emergency it may be a good idea to try it out first and become familiar with how to use it safely and know what it's limitations are.

    Certain foods have to be cooked to specific temperatures to help ensure food safety. The following link is for safe food cooking temperatures for meat and egg dishes:

    http://www.fsis.usda.gov/is_it_done_...emps/index.asp

    I would not want to leave any dishes especially those containing cream sauce or mayonnaise at warm temperatures for long periods of time because of the dangers of food borne illnesses and disease. Looking done many times is not a safe test of determining if food is safe for consumption. Food should be cooked to a temperature high enough to destroy all harmful bacteria and parasites. Food should not be left at warmer temperatures that might encourage the growth of harmful and potentially deadly bacteria causing food to spoil.

    Additional information on food safety may be found at:
    http://www.fsis.usda.gov/Fact_Sheets/index.asp
    We were put on this earth to help and take care of one another.

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    • #17
      Re: haybox cooking or retained heat method

      This type of homemade solar cooker may work really well in New Mexico or Southern California and be a practical and efficient cooking method for many other areas of the country and world. However, when my Girl Scout Troop tried it many years ago in New Jersey it did not work for us. Before depending on this or any other cooking method during an emergency it may be a good idea to try it out first and become familiar with how to use it safely and know what it's limitations are.
      It really makes a difference to have mirrored surfaces to concentrate the sunlight and reflect it into the box, and to have a heat-tempered glass top on the box. I built one of those from cardboard and foil, and wasn't happy with it. Added "wings" of foil-covered cardboard on four sides, and it was a little better, but it really worked well only when I put a glass top on it. And then it rained unexpectedly one day when I was out of town and I came back to find a collapsed heap of wet cardboard, sigh. Next one will be the fiberglas fancy one, when I save up the money for it.

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      • #18
        Re: haybox cooking or retained heat method

        my partner has been cooking on a home-made solar cooker for a few months now. this includes boiling the water for washing dishes - as an ex-baker he is fanatical about hygiene and cleanliness so the water has be extremely hot before he is satisfied.

        he cooks curries with rice all the time. and has managed to make a shepherd's pie (mince with mashed potato topping) from start to finish in about two hours.

        we made our solar cooker from old printing sheets from a commercial printer. i'll try to convince him to post some photos. he has just built our second one - about the twice the size so that he can cook for the whole family when they come to visit.

        of course being in queensland helps us with the sun

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        • #19
          Re: haybox cooking or retained heat method

          Originally posted by kezza01 View Post
          my partner has been cooking on a home-made solar cooker for a few months now. this includes boiling the water for washing dishes - as an ex-baker he is fanatical about hygiene and cleanliness so the water has be extremely hot before he is satisfied.
          I'd be interested in seeing pictures of his design. All our hot water is heated on the stove, and I've been wanting to find some other way, both to save electricity and to have a source of hot water if the power isn't there some day. I do have a solar water heater of sorts--100 feet of black plastic water pipe coiled up in an old satellite dish--but it's a jerry-rigged solution that takes a lot of space and needs constant tinkering.

          Is it still easy to get metal printing plates in Australia? Most of the printers here have gone to paper plates.

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          • #20
            Re: haybox cooking or retained heat method

            Originally posted by Lizw View Post
            I'd be interested in seeing pictures of his design. All our hot water is heated on the stove, and I've been wanting to find some other way, both to save electricity and to have a source of hot water if the power isn't there some day. I do have a solar water heater of sorts--100 feet of black plastic water pipe coiled up in an old satellite dish--but it's a jerry-rigged solution that takes a lot of space and needs constant tinkering.

            Is it still easy to get metal printing plates in Australia? Most of the printers here have gone to paper plates.
            I'll try this weekend to get hold of the camera and upload the photos

            we also have a solar hot water heater - black plastic drum and black plastic water pipe running through old flourescent light fittings - i'll try to get a photo of it too.

            as for the plates, i'm not sure what the situation is but we managed to get hold of our first ones from a recycling centre and the second lot we managed to get from a colleague of mine who works for a printery - old plates that they were no longer using......

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            • #21
              Re: haybox cooking or retained heat method

              A while back I tried a simple experiment with haybox cooking. I took a Stanley
              Heatkeeper Food Jar, the 17 oz. one and used it as a small haybox cooker.
              I took a potato and put it in a pot of water. I got the water in the pot to boiling. With the potato in the pot, the potato's internal temperature was also brought up. I then took a pair of thongs and put the potato in the Stanley thermos. I covered the potato with the boiling water and placed the lid on tight. I wrapped the thermos in a towel(not sure if this was needed).
              I let it sit for four hours and opened it up. With a little salt and pepper, it was good. The potato was fully cooked. It took maybe five minutes to bring the water and potato up to a boil. Normally it would have taken longer to just cook the potato by just boiling. A fair amount of fuel was saved by this method. I didn't have to watch the potato cook or worry about it boiling over.
              It would be just about impossible to over cook the potato. I think the most important thing that I learned is that it does work. This was just a small experiment.

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              • #22
                Re: haybox cooking or retained heat method

                It is time to bump this thread.

                This type of solar cooking has many different names, haybox cooking, solar cooking, solar ovens, etc. As noted in some of these posts, these cooking appliances can be made at home for almost no costs, although several expensive manufactured versions can be ordered on-line for hundreds of dollars. Some of the manufactured version have an AC cord for plugging into an outlet when AC electricity is available.

                More discussions on Solar Cooking or Solar Ovens can be found at this Wikipedia link:

                http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_cooker

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                • #23
                  Re: Solar Cooking, Solar Ovens, Haybox Cooking (retained heat method)

                  MIT students working on a solar powered outdoor grill

                  Students at MIT are working on a case study for a new type of solar powered outdoor grill. Based on the technology from MIT professor David Wilson, this grill would collect thermal energy from the sun and store it to allow cooking times for up to twenty five hours at temperatures above 450 degrees Fahrenheit. The study is being conducted by Derek Ham, Eric Uva, and Theodora Vardouli, all part of an entrepreneurship course called ?iTeams.? I-Teams, (short for ?Innovation Teams?) is a unique MIT course that assembles cross-disciplinary teams of students from across MIT. The goal of i-Teams is to teach students the process of science and technology commercialization focusing on how to judge a technology?s commercial potential. Each team has access to faculty, practitioners, business mentors, and fellow students throughout their project. . . . .

                  more at: http://barbequelovers.com/grills/a-s...eener-tomorrow


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