04 February 2007

Common imprecision

Mom was telling me about the wind chill today, down to 0 F here. I joked that at least we weren't in Europe because then it'd be negative quite a bit.

I know, kind of lame. I didn't know the Celsius conversion offhand and though I know the formula is 5/9 or 9/5 F plus or minus 32, I wasn't up to sussing it out in my head today, so the joke fell flat. Mom doesn't get when I'm joking a great deal of the time anyway so me having an off day doesn't tip the scales much.

Damn, just hit me what I should've said: at least the wind chill's in Fahrenheit, it'd be a lot colder in Celsius. Yes, it's still a dumb joke. Cut me some slack, my sinuses are still getting to me.

Anyway, it got me thinking about Celsius: water freezes at 0, boils at 100. Simple enough.

And then that made me wonder why stoves (or ranges, not ovens) don't have any temperature markings on them. I felt like if they did, maybe there'd be a few less stupid kitchen accidents. Low, Medium, High is pretty vague, but I reckon it keeps it simple for users and definitely simplifies quality control during manufacture.

I'd be curious to know how Low, Medium, High temperature values compare between different brands as well as between gas, electric, and induction ranges.

One year ago at TTaT: This warm
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3 comments :

  1. This is a very good question. If you are accustomed to cooking on your own stove, it's no problem. But if you cook in different kitchens, who knows what the different settings mean. This is deep ....

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  2. 9/5 C + 32 = F.

    Get one of those infrared/laser thermometers. You beam a beam at the cooking surface and it will tell you how hot it is.

    If you get one, get me one too.

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  3. Rhea: I find it pretty curious.

    Thanks, Dan. Laser thermometers, eh? Cool. Of course, it'd only be useful if I knew what temperature the surface needed to be, and recipes generally stick to the low/med/high descriptors. I'll have to start a cooking revolution. :)

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