Tuesday, June 23, 2015

I Can't Live Without The Back Burner

The look on my face said everything - something about this new cooktop was wrong. Maybe not wrong, but, I don't know, weird. A kitchen appliance that was fundamentally flawed at some cosmic level one can just sense.  Sure, the Thermador 36-inch Masterpiece Series Freedom Induction Cooktop was a technical marvel, easily demo'ing the ability to put a pan anywhere on the surface and have it heat up for just that pan. That was cool. It was safer, more efficient, and a considerable step up from the 70's era coil burner workhorse that had warmed my oatmeal for years. But something about this new cooktop had me skeptical.

(Does that look right to you?)
Was it the price? Well, it definitely was expensive. But the cost was easily justifiable given how many hours Christi spends cooking amazing organic meals, and the countless hours of eating benefit that deliciously follows for the rest of us. I had long learned ago not to penny pinch such daily use items. It's like saying you won't spend that extra $100 on a phone you are going to use 140 times per day in the next two years. So glad I saved that $0.0001 per use! If a device can fill 100,000+ seconds of your life with delight, you should get the best you can. And the Thermador was choice #1 for Christi.

Was it the commitment? Anyone who has remodeled a kitchen knows if you upgrade one item, it's going to make all the other appliances look like cheap pieces of crap. You're not just buying one, you are buying into months, possibly years, of upgrades. As Christi often jests in Vanity Fair parlance, "it's the botox that leads to the boob job". But the Thermador doesn't stand out...it's as flat and black as one could ask. It had to be something else.

I decided to go for a run and think about it. And that's when it hit me. The Thermador had killed off something dear to me in its new design. It had killed one of my favorite analogies, the "back burner".

I love the "back burner". I use and abuse the term regularly. Don't drop the subject, don't forget about it, just let it simmer.

"I'm putting my guitar playing on the back burner until I get through Comrades training."

"That sounds like a back burner priority."

"Let's put it on the back burner and let it simmer, then see if it tastes better in the Fall."

Even as a verb:

"Let's back burner any decisions about this project until we get more data."

So many uses! I LOVE the back burner. It's even fundamental to trail running; when every step is an adventure, you have to put all your daily woes and troubles on the back burner so you can focus on the task at hand. The back burner clears your mind. The back burner gives you peace in the moment. The back burner feeds your soul. How in the f*ck could I possibly like a cooktop WITH NO F*CKING BACK BURNER?!? That's just madness.

Or maybe I have it wrong. Perhaps the whole cooktop IS a back burner. Maybe there's no front burner. Now that's something I could get behind. That, my friends, is genius. The Thermador 36-inch Masterpiece Series Freedom Induction Cooktop...put your whole life on the back burner.

It's the long run of cooktops.

SOLD! ;-)


  1. I'd love to hear how much you like this cooktop after a few months. We've been looking at the very same model, but have choked a bit on the price, not the least because we have a range now, so would need to replace the oven too.

    1. Yeah, it ain't cheap that's for sure. Plus all new induction-ready pots and pans to do it right. But it is fun to use and we have had no issues to date. I have found myself using the timer a lot, so you can tell a pan to stop warming after 5 minutes.

      A crazy extravagance, but one that keeps our house flush in good cooking. That's what I tell myself anyway!

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