High-tech foodie? This latest innovation from Panasonic has your name written all over it. Over the weekend, the Japanese company unveiled the world’s very first Countertop Induction Oven (CIO) at the International Home + Housewares Show. The device promises to take your raw produce and proteins and turn them into a meal in just 20 minutes. So if you’re short on time or short on cooking skills, this counter-top tool may be the best thing that’s ever happened to your stomach.
While Panasonic’s newest product may look an awful lot like your trusty microwave, don’t be fooled — this is an induction oven, just much smaller than what you’re used to seeing (induction is normally confined to cooking ranges or full-sized ovens). The CIO actually uses magnetic induction to heat the cooking surface, by passing an alternating electrical current through a copper wire. This means less preheating time, less energy used, and ultimately, a faster cooking experience.
In addition to the induction component, the CIO also boasts an infrared boiler, creating not one but two heat sources that will cook your meals faster than ever before. Panasonic promises that its little oven “quickly grills, bakes, toasts, and reheats, and requires little or no preheating, resulting in perfectly cooked meals.” And thanks to its predetermined menu options and easy temperature control, you don’t have to waste time figuring out how to grill your steak, cook your chicken, or bake your potatoes — the oven will do it all for you.
“Our new, one-of-a-kind Countertop Induction Oven will change the landscape of the consumer’s kitchen,” said Lisa Knierim, vice president of Panasonic’s home division. “The CIO is an example of innovation at its best. It delivers a quick, yet high-end and healthy cooking experience to consumers in a compact, easy-to-use design.”
While it’s not available yet, Panasonic says that the Countertop Induction Oven will make its debut for purchase in October. Pricing is also set to be announced “at a later date,” though current estimates place the gadget at around $600. A small price to pay for perfectly and quickly cooked meals every time.