Hey folks, just a quick update on the blog today. Remember how we gave you our first impressions of the GoSun Go a few weeks back? Well, recently we got a few hours of sunshine out of the drab British climate. So – naturally – we took the opportunity to give the Go it’s first real backyard cookout. And today we’re bringing you the results!
We decided to test the GoSun Go on a part-sunny, part-overcast day. It looked like the best weather we’d get for a while, and I was eager to get cooking. Plus, it seemed to me that testing the GoSun in equal parts intense sunlight and gloomy cloud cover was a pretty fair and accurate reflection of typical UK conditions! The temperature was around 14/15 degrees C during our test, and although it never rained it threatened to on several occasions. Yep, just your standard summer day in the UK…
So, what to try cooking on the first test of the GoSun Go? None other than some of Aldi’s finest Lincolnshire Sausages. I did consider veggie sausages or hotdogs as an easier, quicker test. But I wanted to see how the GoSun Go did when actually cooking something, not just warming something that was already edible. So I unwrapped the GoSun, aligned it with the sun as best I could, whacked two sausages into the silicone trays and then kicked back. For a while. Quite a while…
The Waiting Game
For a long time, it really felt like nothing was happening. I nervously fidgeted with the GoSun, pacing and fretting whether it was in the optimal position to soak up the sun. Any time a cloud blotted out the light, I looked to the sky with murder in my eyes. I didn’t want to open up the Go and stick in a thermometer, just in case I lost whatever heat accumulation was starting to build. So I just fretted and paced some more. And some more. I’d say the first 40 minutes or so passed without anything visibly happening inside the stove. But then…
What’s that? Condensation? A distinct little bit of steam was visible at the outer edge of the cooking tray. Success! Heat was starting to accumulate. Evidently, the most substantial part of the cooking time with the GoSun is spent waiting for it to get up to temperature. Once it’s warmed up, it’s so well insulated that the actual cooking time itself is about on par with what you’d get from a conventional oven.
So, roughly an hour into the cook, I can see the sausages browning, and a lot of steam building inside. Had I read the instructions like a sensible person, I would have realised that it’s best to leave the cooking tray open slightly from the stove, in order to let steam escape. Realising my mistake, I took the cooking tray out and drained most of the accumulated water. This felt like a crucial moment. Having spent a few minutes draining the silicone trays, it seemed like I lost some of the precious heat that had built up inside the Go. My mistake for not letting the steam out sooner, so no complaints.
I think this did have an impact on the cooking time though. For cooking sausages in low to moderate sunlight, GoSun suggest a cook time of around 100 minutes. In the end mine were done somewhere around the 2 hour mark, so this was reasonably accurate. In fairness, the sausages were almost certainly edible before 2 hours had elapsed. The extra time it took was a result of me trying to crisp and brown them a bit more. So if you don’t mind sausages that are perfectly edible but a bit anaemic-looking, you should be good to go in well under two hours – even in slightly gloomy conditions.
GoSun Go First Cookout: The Verdict
First off, the sausages were lovely. I suppose the ‘weird’ thing about them was how normal they tasted. I don’t know why, but I assumed that solar cooking would impart some kind of unique flavour to the food. Whether that flavour was pleasant or otherwise, I was expecting something. But the sausages tasted just like they would if you’d cooked them in a conventional oven or stove.
Overall, I couldn’t be more pleased with how the first cookout on the GoSun Go went. For a first try, in sub-optimal conditions, with a bit of a pause halfway for draining, I think it did brilliantly. We’ll be running some more tests on the Go soon (I’m keen to see how long it takes to boil water!) so make sure you subscribe to the blog to stay tuned. In the meantime, sausage anyone?
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