? thoughts on cooktop for elderly chinese cook?

82mkcJune 13, 2013

Really stumped by this one and would appreciate any advice from fellow gardenweb members.

Will be redesigning a kitchen for my elderly mom and myself and am looking for cooktop suggestion.

-She loves the high heat of gas for wok cooking and is used to picking up the wok to mix things. (hence induction may be a problem for this)
-But, she is starting to forget things on simmer and starting to burn things. I love that many induction cooktops will automatically cut out if they sense high heat and diminish risk of burning things. But, she would have trouble with the digital induction programming seen on many of the cooktops.

My ideal cooktop would be one that has both gas and induction (dual fuel) with knobs for the interface. Bertazonni makes one , but I haven't found any reviews.(http://ca.bertazzoni.com/professional-series/hobs/36-3-burner-segmented-cooktop-2-induction)

1. Does anyone have experience with the Bertazonni dual fuel cooktop (gas/induction)? Is it a good or bad product?

2. If not, do you have any other suggestions for a dual fuel or induction with knobs that would be elder fiendlly?

thanks in advance for any help,

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have you look at cooktop from gaggenau or miele? you can do induction (1 or 2 zone) and a gas (or induction) wok..

    Bookmark   June 13, 2013 at 5:04PM
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hi, thank you so much.

-I didn't know Gaggenau had a multizone one and will look into it. I did look at their pure induction cooktop and worried that the interface would be complex for her to use.

-the miele...The cost (for a minimum of 4 burners - 3 segments) and size ( spanning 41 ") is a little prohibitive. But, that is my last resort if needed.

Thanks so much for your ideas..

    Bookmark   June 13, 2013 at 5:14PM
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if you want both induction and gas, you better of doing the "mix and match" route. Gaggenau has the Vario 400 series and Miele has the Combiset. Miele maybe a little cheaper, but their induction is only a single zone, gaggenau has one that has a 2 zone one. I'm chinese too, and i think a Gas wok and a 2 zone induction is a great combination, with a third zone (or 4th), you can add a grill, or a steamer (perfect for chinese cooking). Not only you can steam things, I think you can use it as a noodle/ramen/pasta cooker where you just add water in it and drain the water right from it. Pretty cool.

    Bookmark   June 13, 2013 at 7:39PM
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I don't think that most older folks who are used to gas would use induction when presented with it. So, i don't think that a combo setup will be any safer at all. The only way I can see that happening, is to have a secret shut off valve for the gas that only you know about.

It's a hard thing to do, but you're going to have to have "the conversation" with your mom. The safest cooktop for her, is for her to give up cooking when there isn't anyone else around to monitor the process. If she's forgetful though, she may not remember that she's not supposed to cook by herself, and you still may have to have the secret switch for both the electric and the gas.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 1:53AM
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My 89year old mother in law took to induction fast and she is the one who recommended that we do induction in the new kitchen instead of the big gas I was planning. She feels safer cooking on this than the gas. She has adapted to using flat bottomed saucepans instead of cast iron woks. She loves it that the pan edges don't get too hot with induction as she used to get burns on her arms often. She was planning to give up cooking but now enjoys cooking on induction. I do have the gagg induction. I also have a single gagg wok unit which I got for some uses which requires flames like puffing Chapatis and flame toasting eggplants etc.

This post was edited by GWlolo on Fri, Jun 14, 13 at 12:12

    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 12:11PM
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Agree with live_wire. Safety is paramount. Look at what will be helpful down the road.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 12:50PM
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thank you so much for everyone's reply!

I appreciate noopd and GWlolo pointing to the Gaggenau units. I looked at them online last night and they look good (now what is the cost?)

But I also appreciate the wise words of warning... and trust me, "the conversation" has already begun.

There is a balance between warning signs where a few tools may prolong the elderly's ability to do things that they enjoy safely for a few more years and dangerous situations (which we haven't reached yet. I am just being an overly cautious daughter ). She is still safe but tools like extra loud timers, etc... make a difference to her at this point.

I am approaching this as a 2 year, 5 year and 10 year plan and want to prepare for all stages.
-INduction would give me the ability to put timers on or one of the motion detectors that senses when someone leaves the area.
-But, the gas shut off is actually a great idea and I will meet with the contractor to talk about that as well. I don't envision using it immediately, but there may be a time in the future and putting it in now might be the right time.

thank you everyone!

    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 1:42PM
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No matter what I read and heard, nothing prepared me for how instantaneous the induction feature has been. The best choice is to use an electric cooktop and ur mom will be more than happy.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 2:33PM
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If you go with induction, look into an Oster steamer. It is less than $30 and stacks like a Chinese steamer. Rice for one could be steamed in there. And it turns itself off. Fine for dumplings, would hold a whole small fish.

Induction plus that might be safest. Conversations are fine but when someone cannot remember it's not always a matter of reasoning with them.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2013 at 7:34AM
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