Wednesday, January 25, 2012

My New Breville Counter-Top Oven

This isn't your ordinary "toaster oven."

For about a year now, I've had my eye on a Breville counter-top, convection oven. With some Christmas money, I finally purchased it a week ago. I couldn't be happier.

Why a counter-top oven? For one thing, since I'm single, I don't need a standard-sized oven for most of what I bake, roast or broil. I hate having to turn on the oven to bake a small casserole or to cook a frozen entree. Second, since I rent, the ovens are never that great. The current oven isn't self-cleaning and, when I have to dial high temperatures, I find it gets too hot. I can take the counter-top oven with me when I move. It will save a lot of time having to get used to a new one.

And I'm still getting used to my Breville. But, so far, so good. Yesterday I baked a pie and it came out great--evenly browned on top without having to turn it around halfway through, thanks to the convection feature. Roast three chicken legs for dinner? No problem. 

I baked this apple pie in the Breville and it was
evenly browned all over. Just look at that crust!

The only downside is that it comes with just one rack. Eventually, I'll order another one. The top of the oven can get hot, but it's really handy to put your finished dish on top to keep it warm (and it prevents you from cluttering it up with junk). You can also order a special bamboo cutting board that fits on top. I'll probably do that, too. The broiling pan is extra-heavy duty and sturdy. It also comes with a 12-inch pizza pan.

Is it complicated? Not in the least. I thought it might be, but I was dead wrong. Simply dial what you want to do, such as bake, toast, pizza, re-heat, and the temperature and time is automatically configured for you. But you may manually change it just as easily. It weighs less than my microwave oven even though they are comparably sized.

Overall, I'm very impressed the way it cooks food so evenly. And it heats up in less  time than a standard oven. And, it just looks good.

It also toasts bread, but I'll do that in my toaster unless I'm going to do bagels or thicker slices. 

On the flip side, I can certainly see this in kitchens where a standard oven is not adequate and a second one is not an option because of financial or configuration issues. For those who entertain a lot, it's a must. And around the holidays when everyone needs more oven space, this is the perfect solution.

Breville makes several models, but I chose this one based on user recommendations from around the Internet. It's 1800 watts and has the convection feature.

I had a store coupon for 20% off the 250.00 price. A bit steep but, in the long-run, I think it will have been a good investment.


M.J. Jacobsen said...

I bought this same oven right after Christmas too! I just love all the features, and now don't use my big oven as much. Very impressed with it!

Gary said...

M.J. GREAT! Nor have I used my standard oven. It's like a small kitchen miracle, as far as I'm concerned. Happy cooking!