Last week I received an e-mail from Hannah (A Mother In Israel) pointing to an interesting question on the Petah Tikvah board. The post read as follows:
We need to buy a stove and oven and I would like to buy one that uses gas since the price of electricity is so high in Israel.
Could anyone recommend a place to buy a gas stove and oven? Also, is there any reason why electric would be preferable?
It is an interesting question and one that I never considered. I grew up with an electric stove and loved it, but when I moved into my current place I switched to gas because that’s what was already there. As an electricity user, I feared using gas, but my wife convinced me to stick with what we were given because (1) she prefers gas and does most of the cooking anyways (don’t worry, I clean) (2) most people’s houses do not blow up Die-Hard style even though they have gas and (3) it’s not like we had the money to buy a new stove anyways.
Getting back to the questions, which is better? I searched the internet (thanks google!) and ran across an article from wisebuy.co.il that discusses the issue in regard to stoves.
To summarize, gas is more exact for cooking, much less on an initial investment (about a third of the price of electric stove), cheaper and easier to repair broken parts, and allows you to cook things that need direct fire.
On the other hand, electricity is easier to clean, less dangerous, and will cost slightly less per month .
I would like to add a few more things to consider:
(1) While an electric stove costs a lot more than a gas one, an electric oven is probably cheaper (I bought my oven for ₪ 300 about a month ago).
(2) You can change the heat of the fire for gas on Yom Tov while many do not allow such a leniency by electric stoves.
(3) In order for fresh liver to be Kosher, it has to be done over an open flame, so you’d need either a gas stove or a BBQ.
In short, I’d go with a gas stove and an electric oven. It seems to be the cheapest combo and, as I said before, my wife is really the one who chooses the appliances anyways.
What do you use?