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I cater and cook foods for clients. Recently I have a new client and I deliver the food all precooked and ready to eat. They may not eat for another hour or more after I deliver the food.

Example of one meal: Herb-roasted new potatoes, roasted asparagus, and baked/roasted salmon.

What is the best way to reheat or warm up these dishes in a microwave?

(I ask this because they are in their late 80's and early 90's and trying to use the oven hasn't proved successful without either overcooking the food or not getting it hot enought to enjoy.)

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Depending on the meal I sometimes add some water to the plate. –  Kyra Mar 21 '12 at 19:18
    
I agree completely with Kyra, but be careful in how much you add. I've found this particularly effective with noodles/rice and other food types that tend to dry out faster. –  JWiley Apr 18 '12 at 19:54

2 Answers 2

For me, I use the microwave's power setting. This is sometimes a misunderstood feature. When you don't set the power level, then it is 100%. This means during 100% of the cook time the magnetron inside the microwave is active and radiating your food. If you set the power level to 10, then during the cook time, the magnetron will not be active the entire cook time, instead it will be active during 10% of the time. "Power" is a bad term because it does not effect the power level of the magnetron. It affects the amount of time it is active.

This is helpful to know if you also understand that microwave energy does not penetrate very deeply into your food. It enters about 1 to 2 inches. This mean the surface of your food gets really hot when the magnetron is on, but the deeper parts are not getting hot. You use this to your advantage by setting a lower power level which allows the heat to conduct through your food naturally when the magnetron is not active. It is a way to warm the entire product without blasting the outside of it.

If you are microwaving something thick, then reduce the power and increase the time.

If you have a microwave safe shelf, then use it! That allows more microwave energy to come in conduct with more of your food's surface. The waves "bounce" inside the box, so being on a shelf lets some wave bounce under it and hit the bottom of your food.

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I would suggest reheating the food covered in the microwave.

This not only speeds up the reheating process, but also keeps moisture in. And since you are cooking covered, maybe experiment with shorter cook times as to not overcook your meal.

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