After Hours

Thanksgiving hacked: How to cook with high voltage

Are you like most mad scientists, wondering how to put that fantastically decorative Jacob's Ladder to more practical use? Or, are you a typically underfed IT pro with access to excess copper wire and soldering guns, but nary a hot plate in sight? Then you, sirs and madams, are really just gourmet chefs waiting to happen.

Are you like most mad scientists, wondering how to put that fantastically decorative Jacob's Ladder to more practical use? Or, are you a typically underfed IT pro with access to excess copper wire and soldering guns, but nary a hot plate in sight? Then you, sirs and madams, are really just gourmet chefs waiting to happen.

First up, Serious Eats shares how to "safely" cook your finest fruits, meats, and cheeses using an open electric arc. (Hint: It's best to use some UV-resistant goggles, so you don't fry your retinas.) Just remember, it's very easy to burn hors d'oeuvres when you use them as conductors. But that's just for you fancy folks with the safety gear and the calibration systems that let you tune to the precise conduction point of air.

Russian hot dog hack

For the common food hacker, there's the Russian Hot Dog Oven, which is really just two metal forks hooked up to a 220-volt power source. It will perfectly roast an all-meat frank if you time it right. Time it wrong, and your electro-snack will explode. You have to respect a recipe that offers a legitimate possibility of mystery meat detonation. Thanks, Geekologie.

About

Jay Garmon has a vast and terrifying knowledge of all things obscure, obtuse, and irrelevant. One day, he hopes to write science fiction, but for now he'll settle for something stranger -- amusing and abusing IT pros. Read his full profile. You can a...

13 comments
gelfling6
gelfling6

The Russian Hotdog Cooker, I made one of these for Science class back in 8th grade.. 2 stainless steel nails through a board, connected to 110V-AC. Same science project could make a good sized dill pickle glow. The "Presto Hot-Dogger" was a commercially made version. of the cooker..

NickNielsen
NickNielsen

as cooking a hot dog in front of the antenna for the microwave link. Don't forget to rotate it or one side will explode while the other is still cold.

Mikebanks
Mikebanks

In the 1960s there came a great wave of electrical gadgets, each with a single purpose. Actually, it was a continuation of what started with the slice-of-bread toaster in the 1920s, mixers, hair curlers, etc. One Sixties innovation I remember vividly is the hot dog cooker (from Rival, the same people who would make the Crock Pot a big hit). It cooked a half-dozen at a time, each end of each hot dog slid onto a pointed electrical contact. They always had a sort-of "ozone" taste when done. An electrical hamburger maker (it pattied and cooked hamburgers one at a time) wasn't as popular with us kids. --Mike

Realvdude
Realvdude

The Mythbusters did and it actually got colder in some cases, due to the spinning of the active radar.

Betageek52
Betageek52

As long as it makes SOME part of the hot dog a bit crunchy (but not totally burnt), I LOVE IT!

JimInPA
JimInPA

That is freakin great! :D But I ain't gonna try it. You first Scummy.

doug m.
doug m.

I remember those. We had one with 6 positions called "The Hot Dogger". It cooked only the dogs, not the buns.

NickNielsen
NickNielsen

It's too unreliable, mostly because it [u]does[/u] go round in circles. Those in the know use the communications microwave which has to stay still or else we couldn't communicate. Gosh, doesn't anybody know anything anymore? :p

Edmund
Edmund

I remember it, in the late 60's... two bent nails and a piece of wood, the ends of the electrical cord wound around and soldered to the end of the nails... screw safety! The electrical teacher Morrie Saul? K6TES was a wonderful guy... but in this day and age... we'd never get away with it.

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