Sugar, flour and butter can all be warmed next to the ESSE before a baking session. Chocolate can be melted by placing the bowl on a piece of kitchen paper on the black enamel top. The top left corner is hotter than the top right (except on electric models).
Slice fruit or vegetables into 1cm slices or quarters and place on a shallow baking tray. Leave the tray in the bottom oven (on slumber or low setting) for 8 hours, or better still, overnight. Herbs can be dried out by hanging them over the ESSE or placing them on top of the lids on a clean tea towel.
Drying other items
Glassware, metal objects and anything else that can be difficult to dry can be placed on a tea towel on the top-plate to dry. Newspapers and children’s paintings will happily dry above or on the cooker top.
Jam jars and preserve jars can be sterilised easily in the bottom oven. Wash them in hot soapy water and place on a tray in the oven for 15 minutes.
Pans and casseroles can be preheated in the oven to save time when cooking.
The ESSE is fantastic at ironing small items and drying larger ones. Fold smaller items of clothing neatly and place on top of the lids. If the ESSE is on tickover or a low setting it’s perfectly safe to use the boiling plate lid as well as the simmering plate lid. Larger items can be hung over the rail to dry. Sheets and pillow cases can be carefully folded and placed across both lids to iron.