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Hotpoint Supreme Chef MWH 338 SX
Pros: great multi-tasker, good performance, easy-to-use
Cons: no option to add to oven cooking time, large footprint, clumsy door
Star rating: 5/5
Read our full round-up of the best microwaves to buy
Although this multi-cooking microwave has similar functions to some of the other models we tested, its performance, ease-of-use and clear instructions made it stand out. Offering microwaving, grilling and a convection oven, it’s got everything the average kitchen might need.
With a generous 33-litre capacity, it comes complete with turntable plate, a crisp plate with a unique (and very welcome) removable handle, and high and low grilling racks, to help you make the most of all the available settings.
Before we get into the fancy functions, rest assured that the standard settings do their job very well: the baked potato preset produced a fluffy, well-cooked spud, and chicken defrosted and cooked evenly. Like most of the models we tested, a bit of extra time was needed to finish cooking off, but otherwise the presets were relatively accurate.
A ‘Chef Menu’ offers cooking methods and timings for a wide range of dishes, from quiche lorraine to roast beef, to help you make the most of combination cooking – for example, by microwaving and grilling meat at the same time for fast, crispy results. It’s in these thoughtful extras that the Hotpoint microwave excels.
A ‘Dual Crisp’ setting heats the crisp plate, then uses the grill to make sure items are heated from above and below, producing exceptionally well-cooked and crispy bacon. The ‘Jet Start’ button quickly heats liquids such as tea and soup, and there are extras such as a child lock and a handy auto-clean setting.
The finishing touches are found in the ‘Special Menu’, which offers functions to ‘support the cooking process,’ such as dough-rising, marshmallow-melting and butter-softening – the latter of which it managed with aplomb, while some other models left a puddle in their wake.
If all this sounds too complicated, the instruction booklet is clear and thorough, and a shorter version is also provided, for use once you’ve got the hang of the basics.
There are a few niggles – the door opens horizontally, and the positioning of the buttons above the handle means that when you grab the door to close it, you risk cancelling your cooking mid-programme.
It would also be handy to be able to add extra time at the end of convection cooking, instead of having to preheat the oven again, for those times your cake isn’t quite done. But overall, this was our favourite microwave: a robust option that can do pretty much everything except the washing up.
Hotpoint Supreme Chef microwave specifications
Wattage: microwave 900w, grill 1200w
Dimensions: H373mm, W490mm, D540mm
Microwave recipes and tips
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