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Understanding Toaster Oven Settings and Functions

You have just bought a toaster oven and now you are asking yourself what all the settings on it mean. Well, all this can get confusing, whether you are buying a toaster oven for the first time or you are replacing your old one. It is easy to think that since you have used one before you would understand the toaster oven settings for your new one.

This is not always the case as you will notice that technology keeps changing. While there may be differences between different brands, you will notice that the operating principle is usually the same for a number of brands.

We took some time to look at different types of toaster ovens with the aim of explaining the settings on each of them. In this article, we are attempting to explain what each of these settings means.

Your experience with your toaster oven depends on your ability to understand the different settings. To understand how the settings work, let’s start looking at how a toaster oven works and the things that it can do for you.

How a Toaster Oven Works

There are basically two types of toaster ovens; the standard one and the convection toaster oven. The standard one works just like your normal oven which circulates heat inside the oven using natural currents.

On the other hand, the convection oven deploys a fan to circulate the heat. The two heating elements in the toaster oven are included so that the heating is even. In some models on the premium end, you will find toaster ovens that have a steam setting.

The settings found on most standard stem oven include broil, toast, and bake. Again, the settings you find on your oven will depend on the level your toaster is; whether it is entry level or high end. You will find that the models on the higher end will include additional settings such as defrost and roast.

Notwithstanding the name toaster oven, these gadgets can be used to do a lot more things than just toasting. You can use them to do most of the things you can do on your standard oven. The ovens come with pans where you can cook different things such as pizzas and pancakes. You can also use the oven to preheat food of melt stuff inside it.

Toaster Oven Settings

The settings in most toaster ovens include convection baking, broiling, and toasting. The oven can be set to warn food and toast. You can select the shade you need and also stop the toast.

Baking

When the toaster oven is set to the baking function it functions in the same way that your ordinary kitchen oven will. This means that on this function you can bake most of the things you would otherwise bake on the normal kitchen oven. The benefit of using this oven is that it generally uses less energy.

You may also want to watch the times and level of heat when using the bake setting on a toaster oven as they are smaller and the heat tends to circulate faster.

When you are baking, the temperature dial should be used select the temperature you want. You will then need to set the function dial to the bake position. Always remember to preheat the oven about 5 minutes before you start baking. You can also refer to your recipes.

Convection Bake

This toaster oven setting uses a fan to circulate hot air inside the oven. When using this feature, food cooks best when a greater surface of it is exposed to the heat. Cooking sheets that do not cover most parts of the food work better. If you are using baking pans and dishes, ensure that they allow enough hot air to interact with the food. You want the food to get as much exposure as possible to the heat.

Manufacturers of these ovens advise that temperatures should be reduced by about 25 degrees when you are using this setting. The setting also influences the cooking time. You are generally advised to check for doneness at 10 minutes before the time that has been recommended in your recipe.

Broiling

Broiling is the recommended setting for your meats. Think beef, fish, chicken, pork and such other foods. Other foods that can be prepared when the oven is in this setting include casseroles. When using this function the use of aluminum for covering the rack is not recommended.

When covered, oil finds it difficult to drop into the dripping tray. When a lot of grease accumulates on the surface of the foil, you run the risk of starting a fire. If you really want to use the aluminum foil, you will need to ensure that it does not get into contact with the heating elements.

When using the broiling feature, place about a ¼ cup of water at the lower end of the tray. This helps to reduce splattering and sizzling. Where you put your oven rack will depend on how thick the food you are cooking is. The broiling rack should always be placed in the drip tray.

Toasting

These ovens are called toaster ovens after all. Every one of these ovens would have the toast setting. When using the toasting feature, always ensure that the rack is placed in such a way that you will get an even toast. In most times this means placing the rack in the middle of the oven.

The settings on different oven brands will differ according to the manufacturer. This is the reason why you need to ensure that you carefully read the manufacturer’s instructions before you use the toaster oven. This does not only ensure that you get the best experience out of your oven, you will also guarantee the safety of yourself and those in your household.

Using the right settings also ensures that the food you cook, using your toaster oven, will come out just the way you want it and also intended by the recipe. Also, ensure that the appliance is used for what it is designed for.


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