Solar cooking is often associated with crockpot, or slow cooking. Cooking times for solar box cookers and solar panel cookers are typically twice that of conventional cooking methods. Slower cooking has its advantages however. Less water is used than with conventional cooking and foods retain more flavor and nutrients, rather than being steamed or boiled off. These basic solar cookers do not require stirring the food while cooking. By pointing the solar cooker a bit ahead of the sun's current location in its path through the sky, box cookers and panel cookers can be left to cook unattended.Parabolic solar cookers offer another approach to solar cooking by being able to reach higher temperatures compared to box and panel cookers, but they require more attention while cooking to avoid overheating the food. They need to be reoriented to the sun approximately every fifteen minutes. This can be done automatically if they are equipped with a solar tracking device. They are also able to fry and broil foods, which box and panel cookers are unable to do.
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