Heat Lamps Under Upper Cabinet To Make Warming Counter?

johnliu_gwMarch 7, 2010

"He can't be a man / Because he doesn't smoke / The same cigarettes as me"

- ''Satisfaction'', Rolling Stones.

As Mick and the boys sneered, material things don't make us better people.

But hey, that needn't stop us from trying!

My latest material object of desire is the magical warming drawer / plate warmer.

I say ''magical'', because these things are said - even by GW'ers in the recent thread on warming drawers - to do no less than Stop Time Itself.

That last #$!/@?!% guest didn't arrive a half hour late. The #$!/@?!% risotto didn't take 20 minutes longer than the fish. Â All those #$!/@?!% things that blew up your carefully planned schedule, didn't.

(That's interesting - if you stop time, you also stop swearing. Â Good to know.)

Naturally, I want one.

And naturally, I have no room for one.

I will have no room in the cabinets for a warming drawer, no room above the range for heat lamps/warming shelf. Â The toybox will be full. Â No room for new toys.

But I will have about three feet of counter, near the range, which are tasked to be solely staging, landing and holding space for the cook. Â The counter can be steel that withstands heat, or stone that retains heat. Â The backsplash can be tile that doesn't mind getting warm. Â And there will be a generous 21'' between counter and upper cabinet.

So, suppose I suspended some heat lamps from the underside of the upper cabinet? Â With some way to hook them up, out of the way, when needed. Â Would that counter then serve as a warming shelf? Â Maybe with some metal dish covers to help the plated food retain moisture?

I wonder if this would this be worthwhile? Â Or, just a way to dry out food, warp counters and scorch cabinets?

Never having had any sort of food warming device, I don't know what temperature they should maintain, and how feasible that is with a couple of heat lamps.

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You might end up heating up the cabinets above the lights. I have halogen pucks under my cabinets and the bottom shelf of the cabinet gets a bit warm.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2010 at 12:21AM
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I would worry about what the heat lamps were doing to the cabinets above...unless there were a few inches of air space b/w the lights & cabinets. Heat would still rise to them, but maybe with that air clearance it wouldn't be too much????

Instead of just putting items to be warmed on the counter, what about a shelf like the ones that come w/the hoods (like Vent-A-Hood)? Maybe you could install one of those rails on your backsplash that you could hang a shelf from...maybe only an inch or two above the counter....

Another couple of options... How about a warming "cabinet"? (It could be put away when not needed.) For example,

Photo from Target.com
BroilKing Warming Cabinet with Family-Size Warming Tray Or a warming lamp set? I handle the Snack Bar at my DS's high school and we have a setup for keeping the hot dogs & BBQ sandwiches warm...it's a stand w/two heat lamps + a commercial serving dish (in SS) that sits on the rack. It keeps the hot dogs & BBQ warm. (We also put the cinnamon buns there sometimes to warm them up...the kids like them warm!)

It looks something like this:

Photo from HeatLampWorld.Com

Here is a link that might be useful: Display Warmers at Heat Lamp World

    Bookmark   March 8, 2010 at 12:53AM
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That heat lamp for the kids looks great to me.
I have a 4 slice toaster which takes bagels and subs, and it gets the shelf above it really hot. I also noted that the electric coffee pot would steam up the underside of that cabinet, which is why I moved it elsewhere too.

Putting a shelf along the backsplash under the hood seems the best solution to be seamless. The hood is designed to avoid damaging surfaces with misguided heat. Kind of reminds me of my grandma's old wood stove with a warming shelf above the cast iron eyes.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2010 at 2:32AM
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How about a range hood that has warming light? My Broan Elite has two warming lights at the back side of the hood, along with two halogens at the front edge. I stuck a $15 stainless shelf from IKEA along my cook top's back splash area and have a great place to keep things warm.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2010 at 6:31AM
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If you've ever visited a all you can stand buffet, you'll understand the problem with heat lamps and heat trays. Sure, they'll keep things warm.....as they slowly dry out and turn to shoe leather. Those types of warming devices are great for plates or for the "10 minute wait until the roast is done standing and ready to carve" type of holdover. For any real food type of extended warming, you need a warming drawer that controls the humdity as well. If you're OK with just warming plates and the occasional dish that you just don't want to cool off until the main is fully ready, then a warming lamp scenario would work great.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2010 at 7:35AM
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I'm sure I'd prefer the full warming drawer, but its not to be.

I may not have room for the ''warming counter under range hood heat lamps'' solution, for various reasons, which is why I was thinking about adding that functionality to the ''cook's counter''.

I ran into another interesting device last night. It is a thick, dished metal plate that is heated (but not past 300F, it warns) then the dinner plate sits in the hot metal dish. Sometimes used, along with metal dish covers, for hotel room service. No doubt SWMBO and dear offspring would like more room service. I've already wished this house had a dumbwaiter.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2010 at 9:49AM
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