There are certain office etiquette rules you won’t find in your employee handbook, and Steph Chen is asking you to break the biggest one: Don’t microwave fish. “It’s such a stigma,” she says, “Cooking raw fish in the microwave—as long as you don’t overcook it—results in a medium-rare perfect fillet.”
She’d recommend cooking all your seafood in the microwave, actually. Even lobster. “It retains the most juiciness and bounciness that way,” Chen swears. She ought to know—she’s been cooking in microwaves for years now as she developed Anyday, a line of cookware designed to yield better meals from the classic household appliance.
She’s made it her mission to help people get more out of the device (which, it turns out, 90 percent of Americans own), and she isn’t alone. Momofuku founder David Chang has been a longtime advocate of microwave cooking (even co-authoring a cookbook on the topic) and collaborated with Chen on the line, calling it “a machine from the future here in the present day.”
Renewed interest in the microwave seems to be spreading nationwide. Back in March 2021, The New Yorker devoted nearly 2,000 words to a feature on “How to Cook in Your Microwave,”and over the past 90 days, Google searches have been climbing for learning to zap far more than your typical Hot Pockets and popcorn. Popular queries include microwave apple crisp (up 350 percent), microwave acorn squash (also up 350 percent), “Can you make rice in the microwave?” (up 250 percent) and “How long to cook a sweet potato in the microwave?” (up 80 percent).