I never ceased to wonder about refrigerators. Over the period of time, I have seen them going greener and greener.
There was a time when it started in the house, entire neighborhood used to come to know as it drew a lot of power. It also caused so much noise that even dead used to wake up. It also needed defrosting every week. Back side of the fridge used to be nearly a wildlife sanctuary with all kinds of spiders and other life forms living there.
Then slowly the frost was directed in cooling the compressor and power consumption plummeted.
I still find we can squeeze more out of that fridge! The backside of a refrigerator is still pretty warm.
- If you live in India, you know that the best mangoes are purchased raw and then kept in a corner without air circulation. Indian summer heat ripens them to the best fragrance. [If you are in the US, you eat what looks like mango but tastes like poor papaya.]
- I could accelerate this ripening significantly by hanging mangoes in a cloth bag – behind the fridge. What normally took 3 days, now takes 12 hours.
- The same trick can be used to make bananas sweeter also
- And Chickoos! [Oh, my American friends, have you ever eaten chickoos? Ask your government to let you import some!]
- And Seetaphals! [Why, why do we have import restrictions on good food in the US?]
- Once again, if you are in India, you ferment your own curd (yoghurt). [Once again, if you are in the US, you eat what feels like cheap imitation of Indian curd Dahi.)
- Taking a clue from my success, my wife has started fermenting curd in a bottle, once again hung behind the fridge. Bacteria like it so much that the curd frequently turns sour!
- Health consciousness is growing and more and more sprouts are eaten. In colder environments, sprouting takes longer.
- Encouraged by the curd success, my wife has started putting the sprout maker also behind the fridge and we can eat good sprouts even in cold winter
The purpose of a refrigerator is to retard biological growth by keeping things cold. In daily life, we do not want to retard biological growth everywhere. We might also want to accelerate growth in some cases!
That is why, I think my refrigerator lacks its counterpart – “Keep-warmer”.
Conventional heat sources in the kitchen – gas, heaters, ovens and microwave – are used for cooking. Keep-warmer, on the other hand, can be used for slow heating, not aimed at cooking but at biological growth.
So, Keep-warmer would be useful in:
- Warming up (the food items coming out of refrigerator)
- Ripening (fruits and vegetables)
- Fermenting (curd, dhokla, handwa, idli, dosa, uttapa, tofu, …)
- Sprouting (beans, wheat etc.)
- Culturing (cheese, wine etc.)
The beauty of Keep-warmer is that it would improve the quality of life without using energy!
Can anyone suggest how I can make this idea reach to the bigwigs of consumer durables – GE, Maytag etc.?