Dish It Out
It microwaves, bakes, grills and crisps food with less oil. LIM TSIAO HUI cooks with it to see if this jack of all trades delivers.
The 32-litre machine is a microwave oven that defrosts, bakes, grills and more. It has so many functions that my manual was in tatters after two cooking sessions. It microwaves and grills at the same time; microwaves and bakes at the same time; defrosts, microwaves then grills, in order. It has 25 preset Smart Cook modes – to warm or cook specific foods like milk, chilled soups, frozen marinated chicken, popcorn, broccoli and muffins. Plus, 10 preset Slim Fry modes to cook French fries (frozen and homemade), frozen spring rolls and chicken – all with minimal oil.
COOKING WITH IT
It defrosted and heated food like any microwave oven but here’s how it cooked: FROZEN FRENCH FRIES Turned out crisp but dry. FROZEN MINI PIZZA Had a nice browned top and a crisp crust. CHICKEN THIGHS Moist and tender in under 10 minutes, although the skin wasn’t crispy. HOMEMADE POTATO WEDGES. Unevenly cooked, and not crispy. CHOCOLATE CAKE AND COOKIES As good as if I’d used a regular oven but took twice as long to bake. It’s also limited by size – no baking pans larger than 30cm. I could fit 15 small cookies or 8 large ones on the 30cm plate that comes with the oven. BROCCOLI I cooked it covered, in a bowl of water, and it was nice and crunchy. But it took longer than the preset two minutes to get done.
WHAT I LIKED
• The basic functions – microwave, grill, bake and its preset programmes were the most useful. • You won’t overcook food in the preset modes – cooking stops when the machine “senses” that food is done. Although, there were times when I needed to extend the timing, to get my meats more browned, or fries more crispy.
WHAT COULD BE BETTER
• You can roast meat, make pies and cook eggs in the microwaveconvection combi mode but I couldn’t see how it was different from using the dedicated functions. • It irked me that I needed to key in the weight of ingredients in the preset modes – I could only guess. • The oven shuddered every time I opened the door!
VERDICT “It works best as a microwave oven, but can bake simple goodies slowly. The many functions can be confusing – and time-consuming – to figure out.”
– Tsiao Hui
Samsung Smart Oven (MC32F606), $649, from major electrical stores