An air fryer is a small kitchen appliance that uses hot air to fry, cook, grill, roast and bake foods instead of fats or oils. This makes the device a more healthy alternative for deep fryers. But it is also a direct counterpart of an oven, wok pan and baking pan.
Who invented the air fryer?
The technology behind the air fryer is invented in The Netherlands by Philips. This Dutch company is a well-known manufacturer of electronic appliances for home, offices and hospitals. But it is also famous for it’s light bulbs and the Philips Hue lights.
Philips announced the revolutionary new small kitchen appliance with the name ‘Philips Airfryer’ in 2010 at the IFA in Berlin.
Since 2005 Philips was working on this device under the lead of Fred van der Weij, a Dutch inventor of the technology behind the air fryer. In 2011 the very first Philips Airfryer was launched, the Philips Airfryer HD9920.
How does an air fryer work?
An air fryer uses hot air instead of frying fat to fry your food. The machine draws in air with a fan and heats it directly by passing it along a grill element. The hot air circulates in the pan so it can cook the dish.
The idea of an air fryer is to fry food without hot oil or fat. Instead of oil, the air frying machine uses hot air to fry, bake or grill your food.
This grill element looks like a spiral and hangs above the frying basket which contains your dish. It depends on the type of air fryer, but generally an air fryer can heat up to a maximum of 200 degrees Celsius or 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Of course you can also lower the temperature and besides the temperature you can also set the timer.
Because of the constant swirling of hot air, the dish is cooked. This means that french fries get crispy, chicken gets golden brown and vegetables can be steamed or even grilled.
It depends on the dish and the recipe that your are making how you need to set your air fryer. Basically you only need to adjust the timer and the temperature and the air fryer will do the rest for you.
The only thing you need to do is check your dish every once in a while and shake up the ingredients when needed, for instance when you are frying french fries or potato wedges. This ensures an evenly fried crust.
Do you need to use oil?
An air fryer uses hot air instead of oil. But yes, you still need to use oil every once in a while. It all depends on what you are making. Don’t worry though, you don’t need to use a lot of oil, like with a deep fryer.
The only reason you need oil is to cover your ingredients with a thin layer of oil, which helps the hot air to do its magic better. The oil works likes a conductor, it helps to conduct the hot air around your ingredients.
I usually use peanut oil for my air fryer. This oil can get really hot and is tasteless. But you can also use sunflower oil. I don’t recommend using olive oil, since it can burn on high temperatures which isn’t good for your health.
What is so unique about the Philips Airfryer?
Did you know that there is a big difference between Philips Airfryers and all the other air fryers on the market?
Let’s find out what this difference is.
Philips invented a way to replicate the effect of hot oil with hot air by using their so called ‘RapidAir‘ or ‘TurboStar‘ technology.
This technology is really unique to the Philips Airfryer, it is the way the hot air flows around inside the device. The pan of a Philips Airfryer contains a patented shape at the bottom, Philips calls this ‘the starfish’. This shape ensures that the hot air circulates optimally inside the air fryer so your french fries, chicken, vegetables or other dish is fried, grilled, cooked or baked in the best way possible.
So in my opinion this is one of the most important reasons why I think a Philips Airfryer is more superior than other air fryer brands. That is because this RapidAir technology is patented and thus unique to Philips Airfryers.