Tiny House Refrigerators and Portable Induction Burners!
Great Vancouver Tiny House Meetup tonight! At least fifteen people showed up, many for the first time. There is a general feeling that we are just at the cusp of huge mainstream interest, which is both exciting and a little scary.
It's funny, I've been researching all things tiny house for about three years for my own purposes, but realized tonight that I have accidentally become a bit of a source for information about tiny houses to those folks who are a little newer on the scene. I'm really glad to be able to help out because there is just so much information out there that it can be a bit intimidating and I am also huge fan of not re-inventing the wheel.
I'll lay a few of my better-researched tips on yez right now...
Do not buy one that has only one door for both the refrigerator and freezer sections. Your ice cream will melt. You will be sad. Get one with separate freezer and refrigerator sections and a door for each. Get a flat-back model and make sure to account for the space needed on the back and sides of the unit for proper operation when designing the space for it.
I'm actually getting two identical compact models and stacking them one above the other in a cabinet because I have not been able to find a well-reviewed apartment-sized model that will fit where it needs to go. Remember that refrigerator specs give depth dimensions with the handle and without the handle and make sure you are looking at the 'with handle' number to see how far it will be projecting into your limited space.
Follow the installation instructions very carefully. Make sure your tiny house and thus your fridge is level as that will affect its operation.
Portable Induction Burners
There are a gazillion companies manufacturing these portable induction units; Fagor, Salton, Panda, Hannex, Max Burton, True Induction, Waring, Vollrath, etc.
I'm going to go with the Vollrath 59500P Mirage Pro Countertop Induction Range, 14-inch. Since this sucker is around $400, I will probably buy a $90 Salton from London Drugs at first, then upgrade to the Vollrath as soon as I can.
Generally the best-reviewed units are Fagor, Max Burton, Waring, True Induction and Vollrath. Things to consider are; does fan noise bug you? Do you have to micro-manage stuff that simmers? Can you not abide plastic sides that may melt if a hot pot touches them? Will you have it on its own dedicated 30 amp breaker to avoid breaker issues? Double burner or single? More shiny spaceman or utilitarian kitchen style?
Basically the reason people use these for tiny houses is because there is no open flame, no gas hookup required, and of course, the miraculous fact that they live happily in a drawer and only sully your tiny, tiny counter space when you are actually cooking with them.
Get two single burners and only use one or two as needed. I don't know about you, but I'm pretty sure I'll be only using one burner a lot of the time. With a toaster oven and either a microwave, crockpot or rice cooker you can use to reheat things, you can get by with one or two burners pretty easily. Plus you don't need any burners to survive solely on Hime or Shirakiku Black Sesame or Green Tea ice cream which I fully intend to do at least 50% of my time on this delicious planet.