Thursday, June 24, 2010

The New Gas Cooker

Nine years ago our stove was in bad need of replacement--it had been old when we'd bought our townhouse, 6 years earlier. But JR was 2, SC 6 and we were strapped paying for childcare and summer camp.
So it was like a gift from the gods when we saw an ad in the condo newsletter for a very good stove for $200. We called the owners. It turned out they'd moved from our neighborhood to a fancy schmancy house in McLean where the rich political types lives, and the stove didn't "go with their decor."
It did with ours. Even if it hadn't we'd have managed. It was virtually brand new!

We were leaving that day for our annual Chincoteague vacation but we made a stopover there, saw the stove and bought it. The owners kindly helped us move it in 2 weeks later.

It served us well through endless dinners, countless baked goods, holidays and everydays. But two years ago the broiler went. The Man fixed that. But when the oven failed 3 weeks ago, we realized it was time for a new model.

I was ready to buy one from Sears, but was flummoxed at the installation cost. Two hundred and fifty dollars. That's right--$250 for a stove that cost about $400!

I was finally able to find local contractors who do it for half of that. I told the one we decided on we'd call as soon as we got the stove. And I ordered the stove on the Internet, sight unseen. MISTAKE!
The stove arrived Sunday. They hauled out the old stove, moved in the new one and left. And then, and only then, did I look inside the stove and see that it had a broiler drawer.

Our old stove had a broiler element in the roof.I'd assumed all stoves come that way. I was wrong, wrong, wrong.
Most stoves still have that awful broiler on the floor, the one that you have to kneel to use. The one where you can't see whether your food is burning. The one where your food can fall back into the oven if the pan slides.
Maybe a lot of people don't use their broilers. I do. For many things, but especially for CHEESECAKES. You can't broil the top of a cheesecake on a Foreman grill or somesuch.
So we called Sears.  Asked them to take the oven back. And I ordered another stove--AFTER checking the manual to make sure that it had a broiler drawer!!
They were set to deliver Monday. Unfortunately, the window of delivery was during JR's promotion. When the Man and I HAD to be out of the house. So we asked them to call my cell phone and let us know--it's just a five minute walk from the school to here.
We missed the call.
Luckily, the Sears service people were terrific. Not only did they call the driver and ask him to return, when the lady heard that we had a stove that needed to go back that was NOT on that day's delivery, she called the service and got them to take the stove at the same time they brought the new one. That's good customer service and I made sure that she knew how much I appreciated her help.
We've managed just fine this week. We have an electric skillet. We have a Foreman grill. We have a slow cooker and a microwave.
The Man and SC made a ground beef and pea stir fry in the skillet Monday. I made slow cooked chicken breasts in BBQ sauce for Tuesday for us and panko breaded chicken in the electric skillet for the girls. We had leftovers Wednesday and Thursday I marinated sliced pork and made Sati Babi on the Foreman grill.
But now it's Friday. And the new stove was installed with a lot less trouble than the poor "Pepperpot" in the Monty Python sketch below.
And Sears thought the first stove had been returned because of THEIR error and is issuing us a check for a full refund on the stove. Including delivery!
So I am off to harvest basil from my lovely, lovely garden--it really will be worth some pictures this year.
And tonight, I am going to make pesto, use my new stove to make spaghetti and FEAST!

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