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Hob Buying Guide

Buying Guide: Hobs

1. Find the hob types to suit your preferred cooking style

There are 3 main types of hobs – gas, ceramic and induction. Asians typically prefer a traditional gas hob with bigger flames for more fragrant wok-hei flavor in cooking. However, in recent times, ceramic and induction are gaining popularity thanks to the benefits they offer. The key difference is that ceramic hobs heat up the hob surface before transferring heat to the cookware, whereas induction hobs form an electromagnetic field to directly heat up the cookware.

Do you frequently do heavy cooking and stir frying to whip up fragrant Asian dishes? If so, Gas hobs are made for you. Are you a fast cook who prefers more precise control when cooking delicate ingredients? Look no further than induction hobs which heat up faster than ceramic or gas hobs, and allow selection of specific heating level with a touch of your fingers.  

2. Know the difference in cleaning, safety and electrical consumption

Electric hobs like ceramic and induction hobs allow fuss free cleaning – simply wipe the glass surface with gentle sponge or cloth and a few drops of detergents. On the other hand, gas hobs require more efforts to clean the burner rings, burners, burner housing.

Electric hobs are also generally safer to use due to the absence of open flame and gas supply, thus avoiding fire hazards and gas leaks. Further, induction hobs surface remain warm to touch thus prevents accidents of scalding and burning when touching the cooking zone.

Electric hobs require an electricity supply to work, duh, whereas gas hobs allow you to continue cooking even in the case of any power outage – though rare.

3. Understand the cookware options 

There are restrictions to the type of cookware that is compatible with electric hobs, including ceramic and induction hobs. Only cookware with flat bottom is suitable for use on electric hobs, to allow even heating and stable placement on the flat cooking zone.

Additionally, cookware bottom must be marked with an induction logo, or at least react to magnetic field, in order to work on induction hobs. To test the suitability of your cookware, hold a magnet to the bottom and if the magnet clings to the underside, the cookware will work on an induction cooktop. However, if the magnet grabs the pan softly, you may not have good success with it on your cooktop.

This implies that your heirloom glass ware or clay pot rice pot would not work on induction hobs. Nonetheless, the most encompassing option would be gas hobs that are compatible with almost any cookware that conduct heat, even woks with curved bottom.