Solar Cooking – First Attempt

My first attempt at solar cooking was not a total success, but subsequent efforts totally bombed. We constructed our makeshift solar cooker out of a cardboard box, weed barrier (which I would not recommend), glass from a screen door and a thermometer. At one point, I had the inside temperature up to 170 degrees, but when I had to reposition the items inside, I must have rearranged it enough that it did not seal as well. We had preheated the oven to around 120 degrees. After a couple of hours, I used a potholder to remove the items…a jar with broccoli and a pan of rice.


solar cooker
The rice and broccoli were not as done as I would have liked it, but it was all still edible.

rice and brocolli
The next day I was going to try some lentils and rice, but the wind knocked over my window and it shattered. I had seen a video about cooking in black jars using aluminum pans, but I just could not get the temperature up high enough. Luckily, DH is in favor of solar cooking, so I was able to order the Sport Solar Oven from the Peddler’s Wagon. I am so excited because the solar oven kit comes with two black cooking pots,  a solar reflector, oven thermometer, water pasteurization indicator and recipe book, which I am certain will come in handy.  I had looked at the other solar oven they offered, but was happy to see that the pans were included with this particular solar oven.

6 thoughts on “Solar Cooking – First Attempt

  1. I just spent the weekend trying to assemble a solar oven! Couldn’t find the glass piece I need yet for a top. I bought some black cookware at Goodwill, though. Hope it works! Let’s hear about your Sport when you get the chance!

  2. I am working on a post about my second attempt…which a bit more of a success.
    Good find at the Goodwill! I hope to find a round black cookware soon. WalMart only had the blue oval roaster, so my search continues.
    Thanks for stopping in!
    anajz

  3. OOOOO, MY…this sounds like so much work. Do you cook OUTSIDE or is it an indoor thing? I don’t know a thing about this sort of thing but it sounds interesting….guess, however, that I am too old to change my cooking ways now. Good, good luck to you!
    bj

  4. LOL bj! Never too old. I will be the big 5-0 here shortly. Solar Cooking is done outside, and yes I will admit that it is a chore…but mainly because I am in the learning stages. I believe that when my solar oven arrives, it will be a bit easier. DH is eager for me to bake bread outdoors!
    We do not have the air conditioning turned on yet and I am using this as a way to not heat the house up further. Using the sun isn’t costing me a thing..well except for the money I spent on supplies to make this one and then there’s the chunk of change dropped on the solar oven…but I hope to make that up quickly in reduced electric bills.

  5. You can make a Fun-Panel cooker from a used cardboard box and a few feet of aluminum foil in less than an hour. This DIY cooker is cheap and quite powerful. See the link below for the cooker plan.

    http://www.freewebs.com/sunnycooker/funpanelcookerplan.htm

    It would also help if you could find a clear glass lid to replace the metal lid for the enamel pot that you received with your SOS cooker. You want the sunlight (heat) to get inside the pot instead of just heating the metal lid.

    Cheers,
    Teong

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