A few weeks ago I investigated the concept of solar cooking during one of my Pieday Friday cooking blog posts and I discussed how the sun’s power can be harnessed to achieve a solar-powered oven to barbeque meat, cook a casserole or even bake a cake! There are lots of different types of solar devices for cooking outdoors and most work like a BBQ; directing heat towards a central cooking rack. The solar ovens look like something from outer space with futuristic fins and reflectors channelling the sun’s rays into the middle, which can reach conventional oven temperatures and safely cook a meal for the entire family.
As you probably already know I’m keen on anything that can save energy and therefore save me money but I was sceptical about these devices until I watched the many YouTube videos and saw a sponge cake being cooked on a solar BBQ! There are entry-level pop-up cookers available (which would be good for camping!) which would be a cheaper way to try out solar cooking at home, but I’m starting even smaller and trying out a solar lighter to see how I get on with that!
I got these B*Fly solar lighters and they are just like a mini-version of a solar cooker; they have two reflectors which direct sunlight into the centre point and anything in the middle of the lighter will be ignited by the heat. I tried out the lighter by stuffing the centre with some dry twigs and pointed it towards the evening sun. Even though the sun was already setting, the reflectors seemed to intensify the sun’s glare and it was easy to see where the hot point is – it was glowing! Within a few seconds the twigs were smouldering and caught on fire – pretty cool huh?! These lighters would be great for camping because you can use anything flammable that you have to hand; dry leaves, grass, newspaper, charcoal etc – they all burn well in one of these lighters. I watched a video online which shows all the types of materials being lit by the sun’s rays and it is pretty impressive – check it out here:
As you can see, it’s quite straight-forward to use one of these solar lighters and I’ve added one to my camping kit, one with the BBQ and one in the kitchen so I’ve always got one to hand for every eventuality! If you wish to see more cool videos have a look here too: http://www.youaresolar.com/
And the great news is that you can win a set of three solar lighters! I have three B*Fly lighters to give away to one lucky winner (colours may vary) so if you’d like to win 3 B*Fly solar lighters, simply RT my competition tweet here and follow @Cassiefairy and @IDCOOK. The winner will be picked at random from all the entries on Friday 28th March! Good luck!