Photo by Jennifer Martinez.
There are plenty of times in cooking where you need to adjust the heat of your burner, but electric stoves generally take a bit longer to adjust heat levels:
The biggest trouble with electric stoves is they are slow to change temperature. If you’re cooking something that starts out on high heat, but then needs to reduce to a simmer, you very quickly end up with burnt vegetables. After a few rounds of this, I started cooking everything on medium heat, but became annoyed at how long it took to do anything.
That’s when it occurred to me to use two burners. I start cooking on high heat over one burner and simultaneously turn on a second, empty, burner to a lower temperature. When I come to the point when I need to reduce to a simmer, I transfer the pan to the second burner. The pan itself cools quickly to the new temperature, and I’m able to continue with the recipe without hassle.
It may seem wasteful, but generally you’re only searing things on high heat for a minute or so, so it isn’t really as bad as it sounds. Furthermore, if you’re uncomfortable about leaving a hot burner open, The Kitchn commenter Joan recommends just sticking a teakettle on it — you save yourself from forgetting it’s off and you get some tea out of the deal. Hit the link to read more, and if you have your own tips for working with less-than-ideal electric stoves, share them in the comments below.
The 2-Burner Trick: How to Cook on an Electric Stove [The Kitchn]