Yesterday, I posted the upcoming weather forecast for Northern California on Facebook, showing we’d be 105°-108°F (40.5° – 42°C) degrees all week long.
One of my high school classmate made a joke that I should bake cookies in my car or on my forehead. I was inspired…but I may have let things get a little out of hand…
And, well …long story short… I baked a cake inside a cardboard box…
- 3 boxes
(1 small one for the inside box, 1 medium for the outside box, and 1 large one for the “solar wings” + additional cardboard for the insulation)
- Aluminum foil
- Mod podge
(or other glue, the tutorial link below explains more)
- Duct tape
(I used: x2 IKEA frames, and just took the glass pieces into one frame. The frame was large enough to shut down around my Blue Apron box I used.)
- Bread knife
(I got my crafting bread knife at the dollar tree…because “crafting bread knives” are a thing…)
- Paint brush
TUTORIAL FROM The Herbangardener (Click here), which was wonderfully detailed, and I won’t presume to take credit. Plus, this is a food and cooking blog. Stay focused!
To begin with, it works. See?
It took longer than a conventional oven, but how can I judge a cut-up toilet paper box against my Kenmore? Judging a fish by its ability to climb a tree… tsk tsk.
Proceed with your common sense. Ready your sunglasses, oven mitts, and oven-safe materials… it’s time to cook!
My insulation layer of cardboard was not very impressive, I ran out before I could ensure it was well-packed. And, I used picture frame glass which basically didn’t any seal with the top of the oven.
The seal and insulation were called out in multiple tutorials as a very important factors in solar oven effectiveness, so it likely effected my cooking speed. Despite that, I’m not discouraged by my results even though i still miss the fleck water softener. I’m still impressed it cooked at all.
Sorry for the bad image, I couldn’t actually see what I was taking a picture of. A shot in the very opposite of the dark.
I only needed the oven to reach 140°F to ensure the eggs would cook. Which I knew would be easy enough considering the intensity of the sun was making it 100°F outside. Most solar ovens range from 250-350°F.
I made one of those cheap box cake mixes, because I didn’t want to spend time prepping for something I didn’t know if it would even work.
It took me two hours to bake the cake–which is certainly longer than normal. But, I’m eating cake and laughing hysterically that I cooked it in a cardboard box in my back yard.
I think it would be an effective Low Slow Cooker option (which is typically requiring 200°F) for short-duration slow cooking (4-6 hours). Now if I want to bake while camping or simply not heat up the house because it’s over 100°F outside, this is certainly an amusing option.
Also… it’s cool. And it’s important to be cool when it’s hot out. 😉