Making A Solar Oven!
So we did! We are going on 39 days of over 100 degree temps here in the DFW metroplex. Yes it's hot....unbelievably hot. So hot that we have been facing the threat of brown outs because there has been such a pull on the power grids here. I do NOT want to face this heat without AC so, I have turned up my thermostat and tried to keep things cool by closing blinds and such.
One of the chief ways that I can keep the house cool is to not heat up the kitchen. I have wanted to create a solar oven for a long time. I decided today was the day. I got on youtube and started looking for ideas. There are a ton! I found one that took old tires, wood and foil to make. I have all those things and it wasn't labor intensive. I don't think it will be featured on any of the cute home decorating blogs that I salivate over on a regular basis, but none the less, it's an oven! It's free except for the shower curtain I bought. I decided to use new on that one!
So here we are. I used two tires. The bottom tire has boards that become your cooking surface. Then I stacked the next tire on top. Pretty simple. We stuffed newspaper inside the hollowed out part of the tire.
The children covered the tire in sheets of tin foil. Unfortunately, I had to use those little sheets that come out like Kleenex. (I saw them an Sams and thought they would be convenient...not so, but we have a blue jillion of them, so it's what we use!)
The boys worked on molding them into shape. All the way around the inside and outside. This forms the reflective layer. By the way, this is when you want the shiny part of the foil facing out.
We had to tape it down to keep it from blowing off. If I had silver tape, that may have been better. I just used the blue painters tape and it seems to hold good enough.
Here is my chicken breasts, thighs, sweet potatoes, white potatoes and baby carrots. I drizzled olive oil and sprinkled it with Canadian seasoning. I put sliced onions on the bottom of the pan to keep the chicken from sticking.
We put the lid on and then began wrapping the whole thing in a clear shower curtain. The youtube video showed using a large sheet of clear Plexiglas and another showed using just plain glass. I was fresh out of Plexiglas and plain glass seemed dangerous....
We had to wrap the whole thing around the tires and pull it tight with tape. Yes it would have been a good idea to cut the shower curtain into a smaller piece. That just too easy! Hey we found the tape, I'm not sure we could find the scissors and I didn't want to rant!
There she is all put together. Aside from the blistering heat while putting it together, it wasn't difficult and we did it with very little fussing! (You know the too many hands in the kitchen thing....)
There she sits. I pray it's cooking! My husband is a little concerned about fire. I told my friend that if she calls in the morning and there is no answer, she might want to send for some help! This is new, but I love learning new and different things, so hopefully we won't be having eggs for dinner!