The Latest Kitchen Innovations
This year’s CES Trade Show showcased innovative, forward thinking kitchen products almost certain to grab our attention. While kitchen manufacturers are gearing up for the wireless integrated “Smart Kitchen” of tomorrow, many futuristic innovations have already arrived and are available to us today. Here’s a peek into what’s really hot.
Though already widely used in commercial kitchens, now we too, can have wall and stand alone steam ovens. These combine the benefits of steam cooking with the convertibility and flexibility of convection, traditional, and or microwave methods. Steam cooking is as fast or faster than microwave technology and convection cooking, and it’s the healthiest form of cooking. No oils are used, there’s no radiation, and fresh produce and meats retain their nutrients and moisture.
Are you using electricity to cook? Induction Cooking technology is relatively new and gaining popularity. It is faster, more energy efficient, more precise, and easier to clean up than cooking with gas. It’s a safe upgrade over standard electric cooktop elements. With Induction technology, energy is supplied directly to the cooking vessel so instead of the surface or burner getting hot, only the pot or pan gets hot (see picture below in which the ice remains beside the pot.) Because some consumers were unhappy with the lack of visual indicators on earlier Induction models (like an on/off indicator and temperature levels), Samsung has now added a fake LED flame to give us the visual clues we’ve become so accustomed to relying on.
Wirelessly charge your smart phone or tablet from a countertop?
Yes! Now, LG Hausys is offering wireless charging technology that’s embedded in countertops. No more charging wires and you get a beautiful and durable countertop with twice the versatility and convenience.
New designs in kitchen cabinetry include styles streamlined for open and airy user friendliness. Some offer a furniture look. Appliances can be housed seamlessly into cabinets for a fully integrated look. Styles include transitional (like a Shaker style), Contemporary European cabinetry, Industrialized and modernized Mid-Century styling. These are expected to be the most popular choices for this year’s remodeled kitchens. Tuscan styles and Provincial with distressed enhancements are passe, and Traditional designs are expected to continue to wane.
Cabinet colors are trending toward painted — white, gray, blue or green — and stained dark or espresso. Mixing light and dark cabinetry inside the kitchen is also fashionable…with different colors used for the wall-hugging cabinets versus the center island or different colors for top and lower cabinets.
Inconspicuous cabinetry that maximizes storage into previously odd corners or wasted spaces continues to be demanded by homeowners. In addition to a greater variety of pull-out retractable drawers and shelves, an awesome newer innovation is pull-down shelving for upper cabinets. This is truly a great plan-ahead feature, that provides improved access, ease of use, and storage solutions for years to come.