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Author Topic: Green-wash product marketing hyperbole ball-hooks ..not as bad as first thought  (Read 1011 times)
MR GUS
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Officially "Awesome" because Frotter said so!


« on: January 07, 2016, 07:53:24 PM »

I thought energy consumption waste thereof was an important factor of design & efficiency, driven & led by the market, legislation 'n all that!

But then we get to the crux of the matter, you can sell something as green in marketing hyperbole, decrease the production time, shave a cent or two off a dollar in production & component costs & expect to see the consumer back sooner rather than later because of needless energy input & thermostat cycling..

How disappointed am I to find all the electronics of a rice cooker in the bottom (sensible) but sod all insulation between inner wall & outer wall to assist energy saving / cooking time etc.

& certainly not in a product costing 100+ http://www.instantpot.co.uk/instant-pot-shop/

Sadly the efficiency comes from "compared to" cooking on a hob, not what we can do to really make our product stand above & beyond the competition & attempt to justify the premium cost, & make it likely last longer & genuinely reduce your bills by dint of a bit of insulation material in the lid & around the main body.

As I said to em, "even my kitchen cooker has insulation in it" ...how do people get away with this stuff!?

Hardly striving to improve / transcend the market, ..yet if it's the only one who does bother that's a great entry point for an unknown brand!

The only real saving is space, I'm looking at this to make cheap some sous vide possibilities alongside it's main use(s)
« Last Edit: July 23, 2017, 12:07:07 PM by MR GUS » Logged

Austroflamm stove & lot's of Lowe alpine fleeces, A "finger" of Solar Sad
Noli Timere Messorem
Screw FITS ..it is, & always has been about the environment (said the penny-pinching Scotsman)
MR GUS
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Officially "Awesome" because Frotter said so!


« Reply #1 on: July 11, 2017, 09:17:59 AM »

Well today I bought one, it is 79.95 in the amazon prime day sale for the latest 8 litre version. TODAY ONLY (less than 16 hours) reg price is around 125.00 in this size

https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B01KHYRHYK/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I recently did get a message back from Instant pot as to the lack of insulation.. will have to look at it again & put it up here if applicable, as I recall it was concern for overheating circuitry in the current set up / accepted design, well, if it performs well anyway I guess I can live with that as necessity, however it does make me wonder why not have a clip on (screwed) module of circuitry out the back rather than where it is buried under the element?

However for what it does (pretty well by all counts) that is a good saving for something that'll cook a whole chicken in an energy efficient manner compared to the oven, ...we'll see, i'll hook up the energenie monitor when it arrives & see how it does.
« Last Edit: July 11, 2017, 09:34:44 AM by MR GUS » Logged

Austroflamm stove & lot's of Lowe alpine fleeces, A "finger" of Solar Sad
Noli Timere Messorem
Screw FITS ..it is, & always has been about the environment (said the penny-pinching Scotsman)
TheFairway
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« Reply #2 on: July 11, 2017, 01:42:02 PM »

Will that do Sous Vide type cooking but without the need for bags?
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MR GUS
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Officially "Awesome" because Frotter said so!


« Reply #3 on: July 11, 2017, 02:20:14 PM »

Slow cooking aspect yes.
Energy saving aspect yes.

But p.I.d. cooking I don't know.

If you want to do sous vide you may as well buy one of the ANOVA's ...they brought out a smaller one recently.
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Austroflamm stove & lot's of Lowe alpine fleeces, A "finger" of Solar Sad
Noli Timere Messorem
Screw FITS ..it is, & always has been about the environment (said the penny-pinching Scotsman)
TheFairway
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« Reply #4 on: July 11, 2017, 03:15:25 PM »

Bought one anyway as a replacement to the slow cooker I was gifted but never really got on with - probably cos I kept looking inside so bought the optional glass lid this time...

Just noticed that heating element is 1000W. Hope its not on too frequently but its still going to be better than the electric oven. IIRC that slow cooker was under 100W.

But I bought it for the quality of the cooking, reduced energy use is secondary.
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3.995kWp SE PV. 5kW Burley Hollywell woodburner. Vent-Axia Sentinel Kinetic Plus MVHR

All posts are my own personal thoughts and opinions and do not represent those of my employer, clients or partners.

MR GUS
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Officially "Awesome" because Frotter said so!


« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2017, 04:16:57 PM »

Whilst the biggest (& newest unit they do) it is the cheapest also, I like the look of the Tower brand units as an alternative, but fro an instantpot that will cook a large chicken it doesn't come cheaper for that particular brand, they are very big on face cloth, so you'll get some ideas there.

I needed to replace my rice cooker, haven't got a slow cooker ..so this hopefully covers a multitude of low energy meals ...my anova is 1000 Watts & the control with that element is very precise, so I wouldn't worry too much about it.
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Austroflamm stove & lot's of Lowe alpine fleeces, A "finger" of Solar Sad
Noli Timere Messorem
Screw FITS ..it is, & always has been about the environment (said the penny-pinching Scotsman)
TheFairway
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« Reply #6 on: July 23, 2017, 10:31:02 AM »

Having bought Instant Pot in Amazon Prime day, thought that after 2 weeks I would give an update.

Having added a starter pack (super grippy silicon mits are great, other bits will probably be less used) and glass lid (for slow cook only which, along with souv vide piqued my interest in this), it all came to just under 100. Expensife for slow cook, not for souve vide which this is not, but should get similar results.

I've (normally its Mrs F) done a couple of our favourites in this which would have been done in oven otherwise and its certainly not a product where a mere mortal can just follow a few instructions and know yiu are going to get perfect results. There are literally hundreds of online instructions and videos from so called Internet Experts for Instant Pot each providing a hundred and one ways of doing something - and if you are like me and just want to get on and cook something to eat without risk of giving anyone food poisoning, its easy to get overwhealmed with what program to use, how much water to add, how long to cook for, how to depressureise - certainly no cook for 5 minutes on high and check its piping hot, or 20-25 minutes at 200C.

Both my attempts were chicken dishes, not quite as tender as I was hoping, but Im still here which is what counts. Mrs F, initially asking what I wanted one for (a wise girl having learned from previous experiences of my enthusiasm to buy a new vacuum cleaner and lawn mower then to become the main user) has just admitted that it cooked last nights dish significantly quicker even with us having to add on extra time for first batch not looking quite done enough.

There is alot of hype about instant pot cooking times but its not the whole story. A 10 minute cooking time typically means a couple of minutes saute, plus about 5 minutes heating time, now the 10 minutes cooking time, then anywhere up to 15 minutes depressurising depending on which of the 101 internet experts you are following.

What is clear is the energy saving though. Below are two different dishes that would otherwise have been cooked similarly on/in our electric oven - the biggest consumer of energy in our household.

First one is cooked on oven, second one is cooked in Instant Pot. As i said, even though different dishes, both would have been cooked for similar times and settings on traditional cooker. With second one, there are two main peaks and a smaller one. First peak is an initial cooking period, second is a shorter top up period as we didnt think chicken was quite there yet. Third small peak is accompaniment being done couple minutes in microwave. There are average power over 5 minute interval.

Hope they are useful to someone.

Oven cooked




Now instant pot. The second peak was result of giving some more time. Had we got it right first time, it would have just been a slightly longer first peak.


« Last Edit: July 23, 2017, 10:33:16 AM by TheFairway » Logged

3.995kWp SE PV. 5kW Burley Hollywell woodburner. Vent-Axia Sentinel Kinetic Plus MVHR

All posts are my own personal thoughts and opinions and do not represent those of my employer, clients or partners.

TheFairway
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« Reply #7 on: July 23, 2017, 10:41:39 AM »

Regarding appearent lack of insulation, i dont think its a big issue as externally, other than steam escape, the outside remains cool.
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3.995kWp SE PV. 5kW Burley Hollywell woodburner. Vent-Axia Sentinel Kinetic Plus MVHR

All posts are my own personal thoughts and opinions and do not represent those of my employer, clients or partners.

MR GUS
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Officially "Awesome" because Frotter said so!


« Reply #8 on: July 23, 2017, 12:05:46 PM »

Yes, I didn't think the outer section would actually be a very weighty lump of cast iron, ...seems to work doesn't it!?

I'm registering 0.5w in "off (ie led display on but unit still plugged in, ..their stand-by I guess).

Our first cook was an ad-hoc risotto which with cream was perfection, I need to set up an energenie to measure a the peaks & troughs, however it was fast, nohing on the bottom of the bowl (de-glazing a must).

I cooked off some wings & thighs for our dogs which were done, though as I didn't saute them first (I.Pot setting) they looked greyish, meat was done, ..sat overnight & warmed for next morning (before bed principle, check new item, unplug).

Stuck pot on warm next morning briefly, meat slid off bones & allowed more of the gelatinous joint material to be prised off in half the time ...result).

Yesterday (because I don't want to ram I.pot down my family's throats) wife tried making a dog food recipe, following the recipe not the 75+ comments  ...it burnt & stuck to the bottom, ...early days & adjustment required, despite putting more water in than advertised.

I haven't bothered with a lid, already had mitts, but bought instead the twin pack of silicone seals red & blue, to use when spicier meals are on the horizon.

It is very intuitive & adjustable, though don't you think? easy to re-set & re-program for extra time.

So far it is being used tentatively, ...I'd have got stares for suggesting burgers cooked in it  ...but not a murmer if I said "shall I anova sous vide the burgers" ..ie baby steps.

Lentil soup likely tonight, i'm going to mess around with it so when I measure basic energy usage it's with confidence having familiarised myself with the machine, but first impressions are good, overall i'm pleased with it, considering we cook meals for dogs / re-warm every day, will be interesting to compare the two processes, as microwave even from frozen is pretty fast at heart, kidney etc (should we forget to de-frost overnight).
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Austroflamm stove & lot's of Lowe alpine fleeces, A "finger" of Solar Sad
Noli Timere Messorem
Screw FITS ..it is, & always has been about the environment (said the penny-pinching Scotsman)
TheFairway
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« Reply #9 on: July 23, 2017, 07:00:24 PM »

Regarding appearent lack of insulation, i dont think its a big issue as externally, other than steam escape, the outside remains cool.
I tell a lie, after 4 mins saute and 25 mins steaming I just found the lid is pretty hot and whlst bottom of pot remains quite cool, the top of the pot is quite hot.

As for easy to use, its not clear to me why different people cook chicken on poultry, meat/stew or steam setting and what the different settings are, especially since it remembers time adjustments so its not like each different setting differs by time. Any clues?

Update - just had first "roast" chicken - Mrs F just stated that she has done her last oven roast chicken - whilst a bit anemic looking (we got a phone call interruption whilst preparing so could have sauted it more consistently), its got a big thumbs up from the family - best tasting chuk that i have had in a long time and it just dropped off the bone. Not a huge time saving, about hour vs 1hr 20 plus a bit more prep and washing up, but just what I was hoping for taste wise. Just need to work out how to do roast potatoes and veg to go with it - we cheated this time and had chips in oven. Great with the juice poured over.
« Last Edit: July 23, 2017, 07:40:50 PM by TheFairway » Logged

3.995kWp SE PV. 5kW Burley Hollywell woodburner. Vent-Axia Sentinel Kinetic Plus MVHR

All posts are my own personal thoughts and opinions and do not represent those of my employer, clients or partners.

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