(Main questions numbered below if you don't want to read all this)
Hi everybody, Im just starting out learning to cook seriously and my old electric stove/oven has 3 really small burners and one that's a bit bigger. Most of my regular sized pans don't even really fit on the bigger one, it's also crooked and trying to alter or realign the burner does nothing (it's a whirlpool electric coil by the way).
The burners also overheat and need repairing but who knows when the owner will get around to having it fixed and how well the stove will even work afterwards given it's age.
Obviously these problems are making it difficult to get anywhere, and I can't afford a new stove/oven.
I was trying to problem solve in my head and I started thinking of how the stove burners "seem" like a fairly simple contraption by themselves and wondered if there was a way to just get some burners without having to get a whole new oven setup as well.
The idea was sparked from hot plates which I've never used and am still not sure how they even work or what they really do.
As you can see Im totally in the dark here, my only conception of cooking is electric coils on a stovetop in the kitchen, so this is all foreign to me. I did a little researching and it came to my attention that there is such a thing as "portable stove burners" Can anybody tell me about them?
1. They always seem to be referred to as being used for camping, is it common to use them at home in your kitchen in place of a conventional stove? Could I just plug it into a regular outlet and put it on top of my old stove? Sometimes they are referred to as countertop stoves but I don't know what the proper name is or if that's the same thing. Does anyone here do this?
2. Are they as good as conventional stove tops, do they work just the same? Some sites mention they are mostly for simple heating while camping and what not, others say there are ones more specifically for kitchen cooking. What do I need to be looking for?
3. How should I choose one for me? I've heard about induction ones and gas burners but Im thinking I just want a simpiler electric one that's similar to what Im used to for now. Should I go for whirlpool coil again?
4. Are there any good brands or types anyone can reccomend? Any to avoid? What stores should I look in to buy one, should I avoid cheaper places like Wal-mart?
5. Any other factors I should consider, anything else I should know? How much should I spend on a decent quality one? Do I need a more expensive one or are cheap ones fine?