The Consumer Product Safety Commission is considering a nationwide ban on gas stoves which has lovers of Asian cuisine and other chefs concerned, reports Marketwatch.
The flame from a gas stove can touch the sides of the wok, providing the even heat considered essential for Chinese cooking and even Korean Barbeque.
“So my wok is pretty much used for everything,” said Charlene Luo. “I use it to stir-fry, to deep-fry. I use it to steam things, boil things, braise things.”
“If you’re making char kway teow, which is a kind of Singaporean noodle dish, you really want something like a wok to prepare it,” Genevieve Yam, a culinary editor at Serious Eats said. “There are just some things that you can’t really replicate in a Dutch oven or a cast-iron skillet or a nonstick pan — simply just because those vessels don’t conduct heat in the same way.”
Similar bans are already in effect for new construction in California and one in New York is scheduled to be in place next year.
Federal regulators are investigating whether gas stoves increase respiratory and certain cancer risks. There’s also concern that gas stoves contribute to global warming.
CPSC commissioner Richard Trumka Jr called gas stoves “a hidden hazard.”
“To be clear, CPSC isn’t coming for anyone’s gas stoves. Regulations apply to new products,” Trumka said.
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