Cooking or cookery is the art or practice of preparing food for consumption with the use of heat. Cooking techniques and ingredients vary widely across the world, reflecting unique environmental, economic, and cultural traditions. Cooks themselves also vary widely in skill and training. Cooking can also occur through chemical reactions without the presence of heat, most notably as in Ceviche, a traditional South American dish where fish is cooked with the acids in lemon or lime juice. Sushi also uses a similar chemical reaction between fish and the acidic content of rice glazed with vinegar.
Preparing food with heat or fire is an activity unique to humans, and some scientists believe the advent of cooking played an important role in human evolution. Most anthropologists believe that cooking fires first developed around 250,000 years ago. The development of agriculture, commerce and transportation between civilizations in different regions offered cooks many new ingredients. New inventions and technologies, such as pottery for holding and boiling water, expanded cooking techniques. Some modern cooks apply advanced scientific techniques to food preparation.
An electric stove is a variation of stove that converts electrical energy into heat to cook and bake. Invented in the late 19th century, electric stoves became popular as replacements for solid-fuel (wood or coal) stoves which required more labor to operate and maintain. Most modern stoves come in a unit with built-in extractor hoods.
In cooking, a gas stove is a cooker/stove which uses natural gas, propane, butane, liquefied petroleum gas or other flammable gas as a fuel source. Most modern stoves come in a unit with built-in extractor hoods.
A beverage-can stove, or pop-can stove, is a homemade, ultralight portable stove. The simple design is usually made entirely from aluminium cans and burns alcohol. Countless variations on the basic design exist.
Total weight, including a windscreen/stand, can be less than one ounce (30 g). The design is popular in ultralight backpacking due to its low cost and lighter weight than commercial stoves. This advantage may be lost on long hiking trips, where a lot of fuel is packed, since alcohol has less energy per weight than some other stove fuels.
A kitchen stove, usually called a stove (especially but not only in US English), range, cooker, or oven is a kitchen appliance designed for the purpose of cooking food. Kitchen stoves rely on the application of direct heat for the cooking process and may also contain an oven, used for baking.
In the industrialized world, as stoves replaced open fires and braziers as a source of more efficient and reliable heating, models were developed that could also be used for cooking; these came to be known as kitchen stoves.re: cooking in the Middle Ages "The division of stoves into several compartments as in our day was seldom seen. The dishes were cooked on the fire itself. When homes began to be heated with central heating systems, there was less need for an appliance that served as both heat source and cooker and stand-alone cookers replaced them. Cooker and stove are often used interchangeably.