1. The Dilemma
Dating back to my college days, the majority of my dinners consisted of putting together a couple ham and cheese sandwiches, a bowl of ramen noodles or a quick omelette using the aforementioned sandwich ingredients. When I was feeling motivated, however, I’d look to the grill and attempt to cook up some fish, steak or anything else that was on sale at the local Jewel. The problem with this was, very rarely did I remember to take the meat out of the freezer early enough to have it thawed in time. This resulted in running hot water over the ‘block of ice’ thawing it maybe halfway, giving up and putting the meat back in the fridge, having it inevitably go bad, waste it and, ultimately, making that sandwich for dinner. This problem has persisted and I’ll seemingly never learn to remember to put out the frozen food to thaw. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
So in comes our Defrosting Tray — The miracle worker that’s going to thaw out your meat, vegetables and, really, anything else that needs thawing in an abbreviated time versus just setting it out on the counter.
Here’s the thing though. There’s NO electricity and the tray isn’t warm to the touch, so how is that supposed to heat up my steak faster than a plate?
2. The Answer
Well, if you’re good at the science thing, you can look up Fourier’s Law and analyze the equations proving thermal conductivity.
For everyone else, here’s the short of it:
- The tray is made of aluminum, which is a VERY high thermal conductivity constant, making it one of the most efficient materials for heat transfer.
- The aluminum will absorb the ambient surrounding heat, and transfer this to whatever food you’ve placed on the tray speeding up the thawing process.
- The higher the thermal conductivity, the faster it will equalize the temperature with whatever it’s in contact with.
- The tray is propped up creating air flow underneath the tray (as shown below). This allows the tray to continue generating the heat from the room temperature and transferring that to the soon-to-be thawed food.
- The silicone legs elevate the tray to allow the airflow to circulate around it maintaining the thawing process!
As promised, that’s the short of it! It’s a simple explanation to explain a simple process to solve a widespread issue!