The Sizzling Sun

The Sizzling Sun

LAST UPDATED: 2 July, 2010 @ 9:26 am
Solar oven
HOTTING UP: Solar ovens can reach an average of 180 degrees

Solar oven
HOTTING UP: Solar ovens can reach an average of 180 degrees

Want to impress your friends this summer? Well wait for the sun to come out, sit in a deck chair with a beer and a good book and wait for lunch to be ready… and it won’t cost you a penny. That is, in gas or electricity.

It has all been made possible by a line up of new solar ovens to recently come on the market.

There is even a solar barbecue, which requires no matches, no charcoal and almost no smoke.

Solar cookers are the hottest new outdoor item for your garden this year.

From just 99 euros, you can cook, bake or boil your food without using up unnecesary energy.

“Solar cookers are an inexpensive, easy and eco-friendly way to cook,” explains Edwin Spijkers, founder of green company Generador-Electrico, which sells four different types of cooker.

“We have been using them for years and they work incredibly well because they cook slowly, so the flavor of the food is incredibly rich.

Little salt

“On top of that, your dishes will require very little water and very little salt.”

Solar oven:
SIMPLE AS ABC: Edwin Spijkers, founder of green company Generador-Electrico, sets up a solar oven

Fitting perfectly into the slow-paced, sunfilled Spanish culture, sun cookers take slightly longer than conventional ovens but can reach an average of 180 degrees.

And the sky is also the limit for what you can cook, with dishes like carne y tomate, flan, baked bread, paella, and baked chicken particularly easy to do on a solar cooker.

Plus, it is easy to get recipes. A quick Google search of “solar cooker recipes” produces numerous websites dedicated to giving you ideas for your new product, including creative suggestions like solar mint tea, mango banana bread, Spanish quiche, and solar-baked brownies.

You can choose from four varieties of solar cookers at Generador-Electrico’s online store.

The options currently for sale are the 99-euro Parabolic Oven, the 190-euro Sun Oven, the 230-euro solar barbecue, and the 240-euro Sun Cook.

The company donates five euros per oven sold to Aldeas Infantiles, a non-profit making organization that helps orphaned children.

Last month in Rincón de la Victoria, Edwin even took his range of ovens to the beach
to prove they really worked. To raise money for a food bank in Malaga called Banco de alimentos, Edwin and other helpers used solar cookers to prepare paella on the beach. Holidaymakers ate a plate of solar paella and a beer  or just 1,85 euros and sent an SMS that donated money to the food bank.

In addition to being great around the house, solar cookers have also been used in developing countries as an affordable and easy way to cook, and more importantly to purify water.

In dry regions like Africa and Haiti, solar cookers pose no risk of fire, and also help prevent deforestation because they require no firewood.

Perhaps one of the best places for solar cookers with its abundance of sun, however, is right here in Spain.

If you and your family are willing to give the sun a chance this summer, as Edwin says, “you’ll be pleasantly surprised.”


Recipes to try:

Chicken Teriyaki
Cooking Time: 3-4 hours
1 medium half-chicken breast, cut-up
and skin removed
1/4 cup white wine
1 to 2 tablespoons sugar
2/3 cup soy sauce
1 clove chopped garlic
1/2 tablespoon ginger
Place chicken in a pot and add the remaining ingredients. Cover pan and bake 3 to 4 hours, turning chicken once or twice. Cook rice in another pan at the same time as a nice accompaniment.

Spinach Quiche
Cooking Time: 2 ½ hours
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup mushrooms, sliced
1 cup Swiss cheese, shredded
1 10-oz. package frozen spinach,
thawed and drained
3 eggs
1 can evaporated milk
3/4 cup Bisquick
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
Salt and pepper, to taste
Butter a 9-inch round dark roaster pan. Combine onions, mushrooms, cheese and spinach in a round roaster pan. Beat together the remaining ingredients. Pour over the vegetables. Cover and bake for 2½ hours.

Solar Granola
Cooking Time: 2-3 hours
6 cups rolled oats
1 cup almonds or walnuts (finely
chopped or ground in blender)
1 cup soy flour
1 cup powdered non-fat milk
1 cup wheat germ
1 cup salad oil
2/3 cup honey
Mix together the first five ingredients. Add salad oil and honey and stir. Cover. Bake 2 to 3 hours in solar oven. (Coconut, raisins, sesame seeds, cinnamon, etc., may be added.)
Recipe source: