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Old 21.02.2011, 07:37
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Oven Choices

We will renovate our kitchen and easily decided on an induction cooktop, with one rectangular element for pancakes.

The oven is another issue. First we were thinking about a microwave and a normal oven. Then someone suggested a steam combination oven (we currently have a air combination oven). And then I started wondering about a side-opening oven, which has a way of delivering bursts of steam, but is not considered a steam combination oven (less water capacity).

The oven will probably be below the counter, because we want more counter space more than we want an eye-level oven.

Does anyone have any experience with a side-opening oven? Benefits/annoyances?

Other opinions on ovens, be it brands, types, or whatever, are welcome.

And we are limited to electric.

Thanks.
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Old 21.02.2011, 17:01
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Re: Oven Choices

I'm keenly interested in opinions about this. A friend got a dampfofen (steam oven) and swears by it. The water molecules helps convey the heat. Though I thought placing a dish of water in the oven accomplishes the same effect.

Also, as for brands, I was thinking of Mieli, but am not sure if the hype behind the brand equates to any real quality.

Thoughts and opinions would be appreciated.
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Old 21.02.2011, 17:17
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Re: Oven Choices

Miele ovens are tiny compared with others that have the same overall footprint.

We looked at quite a few a couple of years ago and Siemens seemed to have the ovens with the largest internal size.

We never had, or felt the need for a microwave before we got a new kitchen so didn't bother in the new one.
We never did much steaming before we got a new kitchen so didn't bother with a steam oven.

Instead, we got two conventional ovens so we can cook food at different temperatures, or cook a lot of food at once, or keep dishes and food warm in one.

After two years we know we made the right decision (for us).

And an induction hob is brilliant. We've used halogen, gas and induction over the years.

If I would score a halogen hob 1 out of ten then an induction would be on par with gas scoring ten out of ten (or maybe gas would be less as a gas hob is more time-consuming to clean but an induction just needs a quick wipe-over with a damp cloth.
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Old 21.02.2011, 17:23
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Re: Oven Choices

I use the microwave on occasion, but when the last one died 8 or so years ago, I bought the largest combo oven (microwave/normal/grill) that I could find, and actually use that (as a normal oven) more than the built in one.

I have it siting on top of (one of my) fridges to save counter space. I also have no kitchen table (for more counter space), and always use the dining room table.

Tom
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Old 21.02.2011, 20:37
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Re: Oven Choices

We only miss the microwave that we had > 10 years when re-heating food. I have heard from our neighbor who has a combisteam and from the seller, that the combisteam does a really nice job of "regeneration". I cook more on weekends and tend to re-heat on weekdays. Plus I cook large batches of different meals and freeze the extra so bringing food back to life is a useful feature.

I like to bake, a lot more than cooking, so having two ovens again (I grew up with two) could be nice.

We are mostly elminating the eat-in portion of the kitchen. This will be a cooking and baking kitchen, with a place for a single person to sit while waiting for cookies, watching a pot boil, or keeping the cook company, etc. We hope to double the counter space - luxury!
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Old 21.02.2011, 21:40
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Re: Oven Choices

I like the two oven idea. I will consider that. I also have the option of gas or electricity. Would it make sense to have one of each? I don't really bake breads. I roast, broil and heat. Is there a huge difference between the two?

I get the impression gas ovens are less expensive to buy, but will require an investment in piping.
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Old 21.02.2011, 22:28
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Re: Oven Choices

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I like the two oven idea. I will consider that. I also have the option of gas or electricity. Would it make sense to have one of each? I don't really bake breads. I roast, broil and heat. Is there a huge difference between the two?

I get the impression gas ovens are less expensive to buy, but will require an investment in piping.
Non-commercial gas ovens aren't very good - they tend to have hot spots and don't distribute the heat or regulate it very well.
Also, you miss out on the timing functions that electric ovens have.

I can't think of any reason to get a gas oven.
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Old 21.02.2011, 22:53
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Re: Oven Choices

Meanwhile, be sure to get an oven with the ability to heat top, bottom, or both.

US style pies (and some other stuff) require bottom heat only (or a heat barrier above).

Tom
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Old 21.02.2011, 23:17
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Re: Oven Choices

Thanks for this thread! I am thinking of replacing my oven (for reasons that will become apparent below) so I am following with interest.

I would second the comment about having a large internal capacity. I have a Zug oven and even though it technically has two shelves, if you use a deep casserole dish, the most you can fit on the upper shelf is a super thin pizza .. if that! And don't go talking about the Christmas turkey ... even the pathetically small 3.5kg one I found this year could barely wedge in it. Thank goodness I can't get 8+kg turkeys like I used to

I have been really disappointed with Zug. I inherited the oven when it was only 4 years old but it had already had multiple visits from the repair man, a pattern that has continued since I have owned it. I might have thought that it was just bad luck and a "Friday afternoon" oven, but it is a pattern that has repeated itself with all the electrical appliances in the house, which are all Zug and which, with the exception of dishwasher, have all needed to be repaired multiple times (and early on not just now they are creeping up to 8 years old). The microwave, despite being repaired twice, gave up at only 6 years old. Considering it is well over 1500 Chf new, this is just not acceptable to me. Plus when the repair man was trying to revive it, he took the backing plate off and I saw that it was actually a panasonic oven made in the UK

In the UK it is really common to get a double oven unit where one was small and the other big and I loved this combination of sizes but have no idea if something similar is available here (the one I had in the UK was an under the counter version as well).

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Meanwhile, be sure to get an oven with the ability to heat top, bottom, or both.

US style pies (and some other stuff) require bottom heat only (or a heat barrier above).

Tom
Tom, I've read other similar comments you have made about bottom heat. The oven I inherited in this house has the ability to bottom heat only and I have never used it mainly because I never had an oven do this before, but also because I was worried that it would heat the pie dish/casserole base and cause the food in contact with the base to burn. Clearly in your experience, this doesn't happen!

What do you use bottom only heat for? What are US style pies (as opposed to other types of pies) and would it be good for quiche, which we eat a lot of?
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Old 22.02.2011, 07:41
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Re: Oven Choices

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I have been really disappointed with Zug. I inherited the oven when it was only 4 years old but it had already had multiple visits from the repair man, a pattern that has continued since I have owned it. I might have thought that it was just bad luck and a "Friday afternoon" oven, but it is a pattern that has repeated itself with all the electrical appliances in the house, which are all Zug and which, with the exception of dishwasher, have all needed to be repaired multiple times (and early on not just now they are creeping up to 8 years old).
I have the impression that the newer appliances are less reliable. All of our appliances are V-Zug and we've so far only had to have the dishwasher repaired (top tip - if you use a rinse agent, fill it just before running the dishwasher. The rinse agent is acidic so if it spills, it will sit and eat away at the soap mechanism if not rinsed away immediately), replaced one of the oven elements and one of the refrigerator shelves (glass + hot dish = ).

All of the kitchen built-in appliances are at least 10 years old, and could even be original, which means 18 years old. Neighbors have had to replace some of their appliances, so we're updating the kitchen before we get to that point.
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Old 22.02.2011, 09:27
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Re: Oven Choices

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Does anyone have any experience with a side-opening oven? Benefits/annoyances?
Other opinions on ovens, be it brands, types, or whatever, are welcome.
A practical solution for a below-the-counter-oven can also be this:

Not all brands have them, I fear. This one is a Bosch. At some time Siemens had them also.

One or two ovens is clearly a personal choice. There is a tendancy for multi-ovens that can do everything, but can they do everything at the same time? I have a fairly standard lower-upper heat, grill and hot air oven, but I kept the smaller steam oven apart.
One thing I wouldn't miss is the small dish-warmer compartment!!!
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Old 22.02.2011, 09:45
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Re: Oven Choices

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What do you use bottom only heat for?
I grew up with gas ovens, and they are bottom heat only (at least all that I have seen). I use bottom heat only for pies, turkeys, casseroles, and anything else that tends to overcook the top when using top-heat.

Quote:
What are US style pies (as opposed to other types of pies) and would it be good for quiche, which we eat a lot of?
American (as opposed to Swiss) pies have a top crust. If you use top+bottom heat, the top will be cooked, and the bottom not. Even for quiche (and other pies with only a bottom crust, I use bottom heat only.

Tom
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Old 22.02.2011, 09:51
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Re: Oven Choices

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There is a tendancy for multi-ovens that can do everything, but can they do everything at the same time?
Mine can (bake,grill,microwave), though I've never used it that way, though I often use grill and bake at the same time.

Tom
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Old 22.02.2011, 15:09
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Re: Oven Choices

Gaggenau

is quite simply the best.
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Old 22.02.2011, 16:12
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Re: Oven Choices

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A practical solution for a below-the-counter-oven can also be this:
Absolutely. And "this" is called "Backwagen" in case someone wants to ask for it in a shop.
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Old 22.02.2011, 16:24
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Re: Oven Choices

in general, be also aware that there are different standards in width of dishwashers & co. between EU and swiss engineer standards.

EU = 60cm in width
switzerland = 55cm in width

... and: if planning a kitchen from scratch, in most cases it is better to plan in EU norm, because the equiment is cheaper than the overpriced swiss ones.

may not affect you, but good to have in mind when buying.
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Old 22.02.2011, 16:41
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The flat that we rent has Gaggenau appliances. I have a steam combi oven and an electric convection oven. We also have 2 induction cooktop elements (a large in back and small in front) separated by an electric barbecue grill. And a dishwasher.

All the appliances are from 2000. In 2008, I had the electronic panel replaced on the front of the steam oven. The steam oven is wonderful and cleans easily. The convection oven is fine. I wish the induction elements had a bigger field(op is getting that, I think). And the grill is a huge surprise - does a great job barbecuing everything.

The dishwasher is a disappointment, doesn't do a good job.

But is siemens or Bosch equally good (same company) just not as fancy.
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Old 22.02.2011, 16:51
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Re: Oven Choices

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But is siemens or Bosch equally good (same company) just not as fancy.
Equally good and equally fancy (i.e. it's a Volkswagen if you want to translate it into cars). The Audi version of Bosch/Siemens is Neff, the Bentley is Gaggenau.
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Old 22.02.2011, 17:05
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Re: Oven Choices

The last three house I renovated I always put in a gas cooktop and electric oven, we did the same here. If you have gas in the house already then cost to replumb would be on a par with a new electrical connection for an induction hob but the gas cooktop (although more work to clean) would be a lot cheaper option. We bought a Smeg oven and cooktop both 5 years old now and still working good, interestingly the price for these appliances here was 2x the UK online price but none of the UK online stores want to ship to CH. Seippe in Germany also handle Smeg at reduced prices to here. Happy cooking!!
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Old 22.02.2011, 17:43
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Re: Oven Choices

I've learned that Appliance Repair is an industry here. There are people who count on it for their livelihood and retirement. They probably devote their lives to learning the different brands, and go through all kinds of training. On the one hand, that should mean they are experts at fixing broken appliance. On the other, it explains why it could get expensive to repair.

I come from a disposal appliance mentality, and will take the McGyver approach to fixing things at times. So I wonder where the balance lies between buying expensive "quality" appliance, or simply replacing things that break.

I suppose it all depends on when things break.
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