It’s more useful than you think.
This article originally appeared on Travel + Leisure.
Perhaps, like me, you use that drawer located underneath your stove for storing pans, cookie sheets, and muffin tins.
Unfortunately, we’ve all been doing it wrong, according to the good people who manufacture stoves.
While it does serve as a great spot for all of your back-up cooking tools, it’s actually meant to be a warming drawer. You may notice a message printed on the inside of the drawer or in some sort of owner’s manual that says something like this: “The warming drawer is designed to keep hot foods at serving temperature. Always start with hot food. Cold or room-temperature foods cannot be heated, warmed, or cooked in the warming drawer. Bacteria will grow very rapidly in food that is between 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit.”
Maybe it’s because it’s located so closely to the ground, or maybe it’s because it’s such a perfect spot for storing not-in-use skillets, but this is news to me. But what a great way to use all of that heat that goes into cooking your foods—not to mention the ideal solution for dealing with dinner guests who are running late.