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Christopher Kimball on the complicated relationship between chefs and gas stoves

By Lauren Gilger
Published: Wednesday, July 12, 2023 - 11:18am
Updated: Wednesday, July 12, 2023 - 11:19am

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Christopher Kimball
Connie Miller
Christopher Kimball

The culture wars have gone beyond gender issues and banned books — into your kitchen. That’s right, the newest battle cry from many on the right is about the federal government taking, not your guns, but your gas stove. 

It started in January when Richard Trumka Jr. of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission said in an interview that the commission was considering regulations — or a potential ban — on gas stoves. Weeks later, a second federal agency, the Energy Department, proposed first-of-their-kind efficiency standards for the stoves. 

The moves enraged many conservatives, who called it "gross federal overreach." Last month, Arizona Congresswoman Debbie Lesko got a bill passed through the Republican-controlled House to fend off any kind of federal limit on the appliances, even though the Biden administration has repeatedly said it will not ban gas stoves. 

The issue is an environmental one: Gas stoves burn natural gas, and the byproducts from burning that are harmful to people’s health — particularly kids asthma — and cooking with gas produces carbon pollution each year that’s bad for the climate. 

But, chefs love to cook on gas stoves.

Christopher Kimball is the founder of Milk Street and the host of Milk Street Radio. He also was one of the founder’s of America’s Test Kitchen and Cook Country. Needless to say, he’s plugged into the food world. So, The Show spoke with him about why he thinks chefs enjoy using gas stoves. 

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