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What is a Chinese wok range?

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Quick Answer

A Chinese wok range is a stove designed especially for use in Chinese wok cooking. Unlike a conventional stove, a wok range has a hole for the wok to sit in directly above the heat source.

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Full Answer

Usually constructed of stainless steel, wok ranges come with one or more holes to hold the wok. The diameter of the wok determines the hole size to be used. A hole size slightly smaller than the wok ensures a proper fit and efficient heat transfer. Butane, propane or natural gas provides the heat for cooking, with natural gas being the most popular option. Electric wok ranges exist but are rarely used.

Wok cooking requires high heat, and wok range burners put out 50,000 BTU or more. A wok chef can choose from a variety of burner options, including ring burners, jet burners and powered burners. Traditional Chinese cooking uses ring burners. Jet burners deliver more concentrated heat, while powered burners, producing the highest heat, are used for larger woks.

A knee-operated lever controls the gas flame, allowing hands-free adjustment of the heat while cooking. Due to the stainless steel construction and high temperatures involved, built-in water systems cool the cooking surface around the burner and help keep it clean. Many wok ranges also include open burners to accommodate soup pots.

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