Gas vs Electric Stoves

gas-rangeFor most of my long years cooking for family and friends, I have used electric cooktops and electric ovens. I could not wait for the day when I would have a gas range. My dream finally was realized when we moved to our Florida home. My eyes could not believe the size and beauty of this popular brand gas stove in my kitchen. It was brand new and I would be the first to try it out. It’s been five years now that I have been cooking with gas and I have to admit I would go back to electric in a heart-beat. That statement probably has ruffled a lot of feathers of diehard gas oven cooks and chefs!

I first cooked on a gas range when I was very, very young. My Mother, who I’ve previously mentioned, was a fantastic cook, used a gas range and thus taught me how to cook on that same range. In fact, I started in the days when you needed to use a match to light the burners and the oven.

All of the meals cooked were delicious and I attribute that to:

  1. Mom’s recipes
  2. We were cooking with gas

However, over the years, gas range technology has changed. There seems to be a difference in the quality and taste of the foods cooked with my gas range versus those Mom cooked on her simple gas stove. Could it be that gas stoves of the 20’s to 50’s were very different? Did design play a bigger part in the sales of the recent gas ranges?

So what do I see that’s different you might ask?

Today’s ranges are larger, no need to use a match, just turn a knob to ignite the gas. That’s good. Also, the grates on the cooktop are larger and heavier than those of Mom’s stove. Not so good. I find that I am cleaning the top of the stovetop more than I have when cooking with electric. Everything from oil to water splashes on the top even when using a splash guard.  The enamel is nice and shiny but a bummer to clean. I spend more time cleaning the top than I do cooking. Electric ranges cool down faster than a gas range, thus one cannot clean spills or splatters immediately on a gas range. It also takes muscle to handle the heavy grates for removal.

Many cooks have complained that they can’t regulate the temperature quickly enough when cooking on electric. I find gas less sensitive to relative heat settings, while electric provides tighter control over the range of temperature options.

Mom was the cook, but I can hear Dad saying, “What’s the fuss, a stove, is a stove, is a stove”. Well, I’ll take electric anytime!