Russell Hobbs Microwave oven.
Our all bells and whistles Panasonic microwave died after having had it for quite a few years. It is not a microwave that I particularly liked as it was so complicated to work out how to use it. Food cooked by weight, grilled, microwaved, mixed grill and microwave and so many buttons to push it was a pain to use. Neither was it used to its full potential but merely as a means to heat food through. I don't think we actually ever cooked anything in it. It was not cheap I think we paid around £400 for it and I was determined not to pay that much for something that you needed a science degree to get it to work. Being a simple minded soul I was dispatched or rather ordered to go off to buy a new one.
I did not fancy traipsing all the way to John Lewis so instead not wanting to pay too much and find the most basic model going. I went to Asda and found them selling this Morphy Richards Microwave oven for £69.95. They did have some very basic models with even more basic prices some of which were cheaper than the kettles on the shelves but I thought the build and quality left a lot to be desired plus the actual cooking chambers seemed a tad on the small size. The Russell hobbs microwave oven appeared to be of such basic design with only two controls which would suit our needs perfectly. One knob that controlled the power level and the other one the timer. There are no other displays on the machine apart from the two knobs.
It is so simple to use even I have no difficulty operating it. I used to think I was technically minded especially when I was younger but to be honest these days I just want something that you can plug in without having to think about what you are doing by selecting the heat level and how long you want it to cook.
The microwave came with its own fused fitted plug as do most electrical appliances, a registration card for guarantee purposes and an instruction book. After discarding the box and foam packaging and plastic bag to the recycling bag I gave the insides a wipe down. The microwave is quite small and its capacity is 20L. its power level is 800W which is quite high in comparison with other models. It fits nicely on the side of the work top. The previous one took up so much room it practically touched the back of the tiled work top and reached the front of the work surface. This little baby only takes up about three quarters of the room.
The metal casing is coloured black and although that is not the colour scheme of our kitchen it looks quite classy with smoked shiny glass to which a handle is attached for the door. The top protruding dial controls the heat settings which are for low heat, defrosting medium and high settings keeping it nice and simple. The second dial controls the timing and is graduated into 1 minute settings up to ten minutes thereafter in 5 minute intervals with spaces in between up to 35 minutes. Inside the microwave it is white in colour there is a 25.5 cm glass round plate which rests on a round wheeled ring which rotates whatever is inside to ensure the food is evenly heated or cooked.
Once the food has been heated at the required temperature for the required time a tiny ping sound comes from it to indicate the end of the cooking cycle. It is a single ping sound unlike the other one that continued pinging several times.
We have had this microwave now for about 6 months and to be honest we are pleased with this purchase. It is easy to use, easy to clean you hardly need to use your brain at all to select what you want it to do and it seems to heat the food much better than our previous microwave.
I remember when microwave ovens first came on the market here. They were incredibly expensive and I saved up hard to buy my mother one. It took me an age and for the price of that one I could have bought six of the Russell Hobbs ones today. They are very useful for heating up things although I dare say I am not an expert when it comes to actually cooking in one. I did experiment with the first one we owned cooking shortbread. The first batch was delicious the second and subsequent ones were burnt to cinders!!!!! Beginners luck eh!
For the price I think it is quite good value from an aesthetically pleasing shiny black look to the practicality of heating up food when needed. An excellent buy!