WAR(ming drawer) - What is it good for?
I bought a new stove last spring and it came with a warming drawer. My initial thought was "neat" but now that I've had it almost a year I can't seem to find a use for it. I put a dish or two in there at Thanksgiving, although since they were there less than half an hour I probably didn't need to. I warmed tortila chips in it for a party. And that's it.
Now I look at the drawer and think 'hmm - that looks like good storage space...'
Anybody have a hint or two about making use of this tool? What do you do with your warming drawer - or wish you could if you had one?
I warm plates in it all the time. I use it to keep pancakes warm while I finish the batch. I use it when I make bacon so the grease can be absorbed on by a paper towew while the bacon stays hot and crispy. It gets used other things too, probably use it at least three times a week.
A true "warming drawer" controls heat and humidity (keeps a plate of food warm without drying it out). The warming drawers on ranges are pretty limited (and less convenient if they take the place of the broiler, below the main oven). The concept is either pre-heating plates or keeping a plate of food at serving temperature (if someone's running late for dinner then you can keep their food warm without drying it out or needed to microwave it).
Ditto on the plates. Glaze your breakfast pastries and let 'em get gooey while the oven is making bacon, for those who don't like crispy strips. Hold the scrambled eggs Bourget at the same time. Let the lasagne set up while you high temp your oven roasted root vegetables. Most any casserole does better if it is held longer at serving temperature. Just installed the drawer; it has the bakeware sheets and racks stored in it that used to live in the drawer that was lost to the warmer. Small inconvenience for added functionality in the kitchen!
We got a warming oven last year when we re-did our kitchen, and it has been used almost every single day since. We warm plates for every dinner, I proof bread in the oven, we let meat rest in the oven and keep various other foods warm while we cook the rest of the dinner. Once you make it a part of your cooking routine, you will see the benefit and wonder how you got along without it!