I have one of these in my house. I’m not sure how it got there since I was never sure what it was for. I thought for a while that it was some kind of electric doorstop, although I couldn’t fathom what it needed electricity to stop doors, and finally decided that it was, in fact, not a doorstop when I set my carpet on fire. Here now, is the solution for all to see! It is, obviously, a hotplate that also steams your food – a French hotplate I would wager based on the odd design and difficulty in mastering the exact technique required to use it properly. I made a horrible mess with mine the first time I tried to use it for eggs, but that’s probably because mine says it’s from Germany.