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No Box Required (for Haybox cooking)

by Sandra McHarg
(Victoria, Australia)

I've been using hotbox/haybox cooking on and off for years, but without any permanent box set up. At present I'm cooking for a family of 6 with one electric hotplate and a small portable toaster oven, unless the weather's cool enough for me to fire up our woodstove. (Our kitchen is awaiting a major rebuild.) So for a meal like stir fry and rice or potatoes and casserole, my current technique is to bring one pot (eg. the rice) to the boil then take it off the hotplate, wrap in a tea towel, a couple of bath towels and maybe an old blanket and leave it to happily continue cooking while I use the hotplate to prepare the rest of the meal. Works beautifully.
I've also used hot boxing to keep a meal cooking if we've had to go out for a while close to dinnertime, or to take a hot meal out to a shared dinner or outing. Cooking in the car boot!(trunk) Once I cooked a self saucing pudding at breakfast time, wrapped it in towels inside a plastic hamper, and pulled it out for an after lunch treat 4 hours and 200 kms later.
The principle works in reverse too. We often get perishable shopping home by wrapping everything in blankets in the car boot. (The supermarkets are a half hour drive away.) In summer of course it's not as effective as in cooler times of the year.


Greetings Sandra, and thank you for sharing such great information, insight and experience with the use of "hay box" or thermal cooking.

This is great information for our site visitors, showing all how easy it is to conserve fuel, energy etc. through easy alternative cooking methods. "Haybox Cooking" works great with solar cooking.


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Oct 09, 2011
Solar Ceiling Light
by: Brad

It's a little off-topic, but when I saw this


I kept thinking, why didn't I think of that? Great use of a throw-away item.

Oct 08, 2011
by: Brad

I never thought about using solar, or in this case thermal, cooking as an alternative while remodeling. I've seen many people use black pressure cookers with parabolics, and now I'm curious about trying that technique, and timing the results (in KMS, of course).

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