It seems like air fryers have emerged from nowhere in recent years to become a must-have kitchen appliance for millions of Australians.
But it’s one thing cooking up a storm in a spacious house with no power limitations, and quite another attempting to do the same in a proverbial tin can parked in the bush.
So, is it really practical for grey nomads to roast their Christmas turkey in one of these high-tech devices in years to come?
The answer from the legions of vanning and motorhoming converts is a resounding ‘yes!’
But before we get into the nitty gritty of whether an air fryer is truly Big Lap compatible, it’s probably worth establishing what it is and what it can do.
It’s basically an electrical appliance that cooks food with air, rather than with oil. It circulates hot air around the food, cooking it, and leaving it with a deliciously crispy exterior. As well as being healthy, it is also quick and easy.
‘Chefs’ basically throw in the food – fresh or frozen – into the tray, select a setting, select a cook time … and away they go.
Air fryers are also incredibly versatile.
They can cook everything from hot chips and roast potatoes to vegetables and frozen pies, and everything from chickens and fish to cakes and cookies.
To the uninitiated, it truly is culinary magic.
Now, one of the reasons for the surge in popularity of air fryers is that, during a time of soaring electricity prices, they are generally deemed to be significantly cheaper to use than electric ovens.
That’s because they heat up quicker, have to warm up a smaller area, and cook food in double quick time. Most air fryers use between 1.4 and 1.7kWh (kilowatt-hours), so how practical they are when travellers are away from van parks and in off-gride bush settings will very much depend on their battery and power-generating setup.
Another key thing to bear in mind is that this is another ‘extra’ appliance. It will take up counter space when being used … and need to be securely stored when it’s not.
But, to a growing number of nomads, the fact that air fryers are so quick, easy and actually fun to use, makes them well worth the effort.