Mannheim. The new generation of kitchens offers a range of inno-vations in terms of furniture and arrangement designed to promote the health of users. Height-adjustable worktops and sinks make ergonomic methods of working easier, as do optimised access to storage spaces and the dishwasher. Ergonomically coordinated spacial utilisation zones make handling foods easier for the chef and excellent working lights brighten even the darkest of corners. But the most important function of a kitchen is, and will always be, the preparation of meals. For this reason, the makers of kitchen electronics have developed a wide range of innovations that make healthy eating a priority.
After purchasing, most foods will initially be stored in the fridge. The modern fridge is, of course, an energy-saving device and offers a variety of different temperature zones designed to accommodate various food-stuffs. Fresh fruit and vegetables require a different storage temperature to fresh meat or cheese. “The emphasis is less on the duration of storage and more on maintaining the quality and the healthy components of the food”, says Frank Hüther, business manager of the Arbeitsgemeinschaft Die Moderne Küche e.V. (AMK), Mannheim, germany. The trend is clearly steam cookers for the actual preparation of meals. These devices are sometimes also integrated in ovens and cook food with the help of hot steam only. Meals are cooked faster and vitamins are maintained. Crunchy vegetables are popular thanks to the freshness factor and the, generally, more intensive colour is ideal. After all, food should look good too! “Crunchy vegetables are also well tolerated by the majority of peo-ple. Something that has only recently been discovered and which has finally freed us from soft, overcooked, colourless and boring vegetables“, adds Hüther enthusiastically.
When steam cooking, you can almost see the meal coming together. The senses are awakened and the cooking process becomes inspirational.
The current trend includes induction hobs which are installed flush with surfaces. These hobs respond faster than an ordinary hob, heating not just the bottom of the pan, but the side walls as well. The food is cooked faster, energy is saved and vitamin content is upheld. Full surface induc-tion hobs are in trend and will, in future, become a standard feature in the modern kitchen. Combined with a modern, extremely high suction yet quiet extraction hood, the result is far fewer annoying odours than in the past.
Even the new generation of tap fittings offers a range of features to pro-mote health. For example, the hand-held showering head units with infi-nitely adjustable water jets which provide optimum aids for short, yet in-tensive washing or salads and vegetables. This means that leeks and company are no longer “washed out”, just briefly and thoroughly cleaned. In addition, fittings today may also offer filtered and, thus, cleaned water or boiling water at the touch of a button. This makes the troublesome waiting for tea water a thing of the past and the likelihood of more fre-quent use contributes towards the well-being of the user.
The preparation of meals has experienced a number of different phases over time. Bread, rice, pasta and potatoes have different cultural posi-tions depending where you are in world. The associated preparation methods are as different as the spices that lend them their special char-acter. Cumin here, lemongrass there, salt almost everywhere. Meals and their preparation methods have increasingly been examined and ana-lysed using bio-chemical procedures. The new knowledge about nutrition is now independent of eating habits and culture. Instead, it shows us what healthy eating is and how vitamins and minerals in food can be main-tained despite the cooking process. Not too long ago, white cabbage was cooked almost until it fell apart and the entire house would take on the smell. This is now unthinkable since the rich vitamin content is desired. (AMK)
AMK is the specialist and service organisation of the entire kitchen indus-try. It is involved in the technology and standards sector, marketing and public services, internationalisation and trade fairs. AMK has over 120 member companies, all renowned manufacturers of kitchen furniture, elec-tronic and electrical devices, sinks, accessories as well as suppliers, trad-ing cooperations and service providers. It is also the umbrella organisation for the “Day in the kitchen” which takes place annually offering live event in numerous kitchen exhibition centres in the German-speaking world. Next scheduled event: 28.09.2013. Additional information can be found on the Internet at www.amk.de and www.tag-der-kueche.de. (AMK)
Mannheim, 26th February 2013
The modern fridge has different temperature zones. This enables opti-mum storage of various types of food. (Photograph: AMK)
See how a meal is created: The modern steam cooker inspires and maintains vitamins and minerals. (Photograph: AMK)
Sufficient humidity prevents foods from drying out in a modern oven and makes baking bread child's play.
The induction hob is becoming standard in the kitchen. Food can be cooked faster and vitamins remain. (Photograph: AMK)