Keeping dinner plates hot?

The friendliest place on the web for anyone that enjoys cooking.
If you have answers, please help by responding to the unanswered posts.

katyb

Assistant Cook
Joined
Sep 2, 2004
Messages
5
Hello,

There are 2 people in my life who moan constantly about food going cold on their dinner plates before they have chance to eat it - my husband and my mother. Both disappear half way through to put the plate in the microwave.

Now, I have heard about some kind of metal / cast iron hot plate that is heated in the oven and then your dinner plate sits inside / on top of it at the table, thus keeping food hot throughout the meal. I have searched online but can only find the type with candles underneath. My parents came across these plates in Portugal but couldn't find where to buy them either. I would really like to get some of these so my family can have an uninterupted meal!

Has anyone got any ideas? Your help would be most appreciated.
 

scott123

Senior Cook
Joined
Feb 22, 2004
Messages
403
Location
USA,NewJersey
If your oven isn't being used, put the plates in, count to 30, turn it off, and as long as you don't open the oven, the plates will stay warm for quite some time.
 

katyb

Assistant Cook
Joined
Sep 2, 2004
Messages
5
Thank you Scott. We already do this, but it's just not hot enough.

I would really like to find these portugese (or similar) hot plates.
 

katyb

Assistant Cook
Joined
Sep 2, 2004
Messages
5
hmmmm....interesting idea. Maybe a little unstable for my more sloppy offerings!
 

Raine

Executive Chef
Joined
Jun 3, 2004
Messages
3,549
Location
NC
Or maybe some of those heat packs for muscle aches.
 

jpmcgrew

Executive Chef
Joined
Aug 31, 2004
Messages
4,569
Location
Raton,NM, USA
First you need to be sure the food you put on plates is still hot enough ,I heat serving dishes in oven and plates in the sink with super hot water then dry them.Other than that I dont know what to say.
Food is just going to cool off as soon as its off the heat.
 

scott123

Senior Cook
Joined
Feb 22, 2004
Messages
403
Location
USA,NewJersey
I have one approach that might help. Serve them hot stew in a bowl. Liquids retain heat as do earthenware bowls. Food crowded together will stay warm a lot longer than food spaced apart with lots of surface area.

You could take unglazed quarry tiles preheated in a hot oven and then place those on hotpads on the table. And then put the plates on top of those. Those will stay hot for the length of the meal.
 

Claire

Master Chef
Joined
Sep 4, 2004
Messages
7,967
Location
Galena, IL
For some reason, this was a problem when we lived out west (Nevada, Utah). My mom bought an electric food warmer (for lack of a better word). It was a couple of feet long, maybe one foot wide, and she'd plug it in and put it on the table, then put all the bowls and plates of food on it. I think it is still available, meant to be used when you have a buffet. It's just a platform that is warm. THe hot food is placed on it, and you serve yourself from it (we always ate what I call family style; mom didn't serve up in the kitchen and bring the food out). If their food gets cold after being served on this, then they should simply learn to take smaller servings and go back for more, because the food on the table will always be hot. To this day my dad hates the ceiling fan over the table because it cools his food.
 

Michael in FtW

Master Chef
Moderator Emeritus
Joined
Sep 5, 2004
Messages
6,592
Location
Fort Worth, TX
The name of what you are looking for is a "charger plate" - a plate that sits under the dinner plate. These can be either purely decorative or functional - made of ceramic or metals such as silver, brass, copper, pewter, sainless steel, aluminum, etc.

Another thing to consider is the material of your dinner plates - metal such as pewter, aluminum, or best of all cast iron or even heavy ceramic will not cool off as quickly as china or plastic. These metal plates (which have a wood charger plate) are usually called "Sizzle Plates".

Go to google and search on charger plates and sizzle plates and I bet you can find what you are looking for - or something that will solve your problem.
 

kitchenelf

Chef Extraordinaire
Joined
Feb 21, 2002
Messages
19,722
Location
North Carolina
I was just getting ready to say in response to Michael in FW that I have never seen cast iron dinner plates!!!! But alas, go buy the cast iron fajita plates used in Mexican restaurants and use those as their plates!!! Heat them up before hand, put their food on it (of course use a small wooden cutting board or wooden holder underneath or something similar that will help retain the heat).

OR...don't worry about it and let them get up and heat their food occasionally :roll:
 

Michael in FtW

Master Chef
Moderator Emeritus
Joined
Sep 5, 2004
Messages
6,592
Location
Fort Worth, TX
kitchenelf :LOL:

Yeah, here in my part of the south - we have places that serve a "breakfast skillet" - basically just an 8" cast iron skillet that is served at the table on top of a wood "charger plate" - the "charger" being the plate under the serving plate. Yep, fajita plates are the same idea - but I think they fall more into the "sizzle plate" catagory - which again is just a metal serving plate on a wood charger plate.
 

katyb

Assistant Cook
Joined
Sep 2, 2004
Messages
5
Thank you everyone for your help.

You have given me some good ideas. The cast iron sizzler plates will probably do the trick and I have found a supplier in the UK.

Thanks again.

Kate[/img]
 

VegasDramaQueen

Senior Cook
Joined
Sep 2, 2004
Messages
316
RAINEE: Thanks so much for the tip on the Lodge Handleless serving dish. I love my Lodge cast iron cookware and the quality of this should be as good. We love to cook and eat outdoors on the patio and our biggest problem is keeping the food, especially steaks and chicken, hot throughout the meal. I never thought to go Lodge for the answer but this little serving dish is perfect. Thanks again.
 

Psiguyy

Sous Chef
Joined
Aug 24, 2004
Messages
843
If it were me, I'd heat the plates in a 250 degree oven and serve smaller portions.

If they still think they need to nuke the food, I'd sit at the table with a blow torch and flame the food in an effort to make a point. If they still want to nuke the food, I'd threaten them with applying the torch to a couple of butts! [Tounge Firmly in Cheek]

Seriously, if they're not satisfied, let them suffer. I think they're being particularly picky. Do they act that way in restaurants? What about at her house? How about at anybody else's house?

I think this whole thing is something Dear Abby would be better equipped to answer.
 

VegasDramaQueen

Senior Cook
Joined
Sep 2, 2004
Messages
316
Psiguyy said:
If it were me, I'd heat the plates in a 250 degree oven and serve smaller portions.

If they still think they need to nuke the food, I'd sit at the table with a blow torch and flame the food in an effort to make a point. If they still want to nuke the food, I'd threaten them with applying the torch to a couple of butts! [Tounge Firmly in Cheek]

Seriously, if they're not satisfied, let them suffer. I think they're being particularly picky. Do they act that way in restaurants? What about at her house? How about at anybody else's house?

I think this whole thing is something Dear Abby would be better equipped to answer.

I have to agree with the original poster, we have that same problem at our house. I have put our stoneware plates in the oven several times but they cool off very fast and so does the food. We eat outside almost every day and I can understand the cooling off when you're outside, but this happens in the house also. The cast iron serving dishes that I just found from Lodge are the perfect answer. Cast iron takes a long time to cool down so for us these little guys are the perfect solution. I don't think the poster's family is being picky, they just like their food hot. Who doesn't??
 

Psiguyy

Sous Chef
Joined
Aug 24, 2004
Messages
843
I have to stick with what I said. If the food gets too cold on a plate that's been heated, there is either a draft blowing cold air on the food or there is too much food on the plate. You need to serve more courses with smaller servings if you are serious about keeping food hot on the table.

Think about it. How often have you complained about food getting cold in a first rate restaurant? They don't use any gizmo to keep their plates and food hot.
 

katyb

Assistant Cook
Joined
Sep 2, 2004
Messages
5
I'm not talking about people who have normal temperature requirements with regards to food. I consider myself 'normal' and I don't have a problem with food going cold at the table. For most of us, it isn't a problem, but there are the odd few people who like their food really, really hot, and I know it's not good for them, but that isn't the point.

My original question was...has anybody come across a similar device to the one my parents saw in Portugal ie a large ceramic vessel that cradled the plate? I would really like to get some for them. That's all. The hot platters and sizzlers mentioned seem like a good idea and I will get some if I can't find what I'm looking for and thank you to everyone who came up with a positive response.

But I'm still looking..............
 
Top Bottom