A bit of history behind our cooker:
We had our entire kitchen renovated two years ago and as part of this big change we wanted a really nice cooker as we both really enjoy cooking. Our house in an old farm house and we thought initially it would be great to have an oil fired Aga as it would run the water and keep the kitchen toasty warm. We went off eagerly to visit the Aga show room to find out about the costs and installation involved... well, we had to back step big time as the Aga alone was going to be more than the quote we had for the rest of the kitchen and then we had to get it installed. Big re-think needed so we looked around a number of options. Part of the re -fit and putting in a bigger cooker meant taking out a chimney and putting in a support to hold up what was left of the chimney in order that we could fit the cooker/range back into this space. It needed very careful measurement because if we bought a cooker that would then not fit in the whole we had we were going to be in big trouble. Anyway we measured and consulted with the kitchen fitters and we finally decided that the Rangemaster dual fuel 110 would fit in the hole and so - all systems go. We also have no mains gas in our village so we needed to have gas pipes ready for calor gas tanks laid under our driveway which fortunately was being newly laid at this time as the kitchen was only a small part of our major house renovation.
After living off microwaved food and TakeAways for a month we were so excited about finally going to move back into our new kitchen and be able to use a cooker to cooker proper meals or so we thought... It turned out that although we had had a gas pipe fitted under the new driveway ready for our new cooker in our new kitchen , somehow the regulations had changed in between the driveway being laid and the installation of the cooker. The new regulation connectors did not fit on our 3 month old pipe. After a lot of chasing around we did find a gas fitter who managed to connect it all up ( using the old type of connector - but we didn't care as if we had done it two months earlier it would have been that connector anyway).
What it looks like:
The Rangemaster has a gas hob and electric ovens. We have four gas burners on the left ranging in size and heat output. There is also a big wok burner in the middle which is quite ferocious when you light it - almost took my eyebrows and fringe off the first time. It also comes with a wok stand to hold the wok above the flame which I just keep on the cooker all the time. On the right of the wok burner we have an electric plate or food warmer which does get quite hot and keeps food warm ready to serve or will heat your plates so your food doesn't go cold as soon as you plate it up.
We also have a griddle plate which sits over two burners for cooking steaks etc.
We have two ovens, one is fan assisted and this is slightly larger than the standard oven. Both have glass windows in the doors but you can choose to have ones without the window. I like to see how things are cooking so we chose the windows in ours.
We also have storage drawer for oven pans but this is not very big and I have ended up storing quite a few oven trays in the ovens and remove them when I need to cook in the oven. This is probably as we have quite a large family and so I have a number of oven tray, cake tins etc. The grill under the hobs on the left is electric and has the option of whole grill heated or half if you are only grilling something small.
This is what is standard for all models
* Standard uncomplicated rotary controls
* Sit-on griddle 9 sits over two burners)
* Warming zone ( plate warmer)
* Auto programme clock & minute minder
* 2 x interior lights ( in oven to see when cooking)
* Porthole doors ( windows for you to see whats happening in oven while cooking)
* Handyrack ( in the non - fan assisted oven - to hold the oven tray)
* Cook and clean oven linings ( it does keep quite clean but the door still needs cleaning with hard work and some chemical assiastance)
* Slow cook facility
* Storage drawer
This is in the Dual Fuel models like ours
* Oven capacity 67 & 67 litres
* Dual circuit electric grill
* Browning element
* 1 x conventional
* 1 x fan
* 1 x small 1kW
* 2 x medium 1.7kW
* 1 x large 3kW
* 2 x high 3.5kW
Ours is a creamy colour with brass handles but they do come in other colours. In dual fuel the options are :
Matt black, cream, regal blue, rich claret, racing green, white/black hob, all white and cranberry and each colour choice can be with brass handles or chrome.
The all important ( from our pint of view so it could fit in the hole made in our chimney breast ) dimensions:
* Height: 898-925mm
* Width: 1100mm
* Depth: 600mm
We are very pleased with our Rangemaster as it fits in the space we hoped it would. It looks quite classy, almost like an Aga in looks but without the price tag. Since oil has being going up in price we are now doubly glad we chose this instead of an oil-fired Aga. The only thing this doesn't do is warm the kitchen but we have a radiator that does that job anyway. It is so easy to cook with, the calor gas burners are very responsive and because we have small and large ones we can choose how powerful we need the gas to be according to the saucepan size or what is cooking - whether we need it to boil or simmer. The calor gas cylinder seems to last ages. I think in two years we have replaced one cylinder which cost about £40 so quite reasonable really considering we cook every day.
The ovens are great. The fan assisted one is much quicker and useful for cakes and general oven cooking. The smaller oven is wonderful for slow cooking and does a great Moroccan slow cooked roast lamb - the meat practically falls of it is so tender. It is really handy having the two ovens at Christmas and other family times when we are cooking for a dozen most days. Five children and partners and two grandchildren plus any of my husband or my siblings and families also join us from time to time.
Another recommendation for this cooker is that one of my sons in law is Head chef at Choice restaurant in Manchester ( http://www.choicebarandrestaurant.co.uk) and he is impressed with the Rangemaster and enjoys cooking on it when he comes to stay. I have to admit his meals are in a different class to those we produce but I think that has more to do with the chef than the cooker!
I find the cooker really easy to clean. It does say that they DO NOT recommend Mr Muscle as the chemicals are really harsh. For the top I use dish washing liquid and a non-stick pot scrubber. The ovens and grills I have lined on the bottom with the non-stick heat resistant oven liner you can buy from Lakeland (www.lakeland.co.uk magic-oven-liner in cooking-baking product/3318) which is wonderful - you just wipe them off. They have been in the ovens and grill since we've had the cooker and are still working fine. Just a little aside - if you have any over you can line the grill pan and that makes washing it so much easier. I did have some left but it disappeared when we went on holiday once leaving the two (20+ aged) boys in charge. There is a whole section in the instruction booklet on cleaning and what not to use .. it suggest hot soapy water for everywhere but there is no way the oven windows would get clean using that and I have used stronger solutions on those otherwise you can't see a beautiful clean window. This may be because I am not one of those people who clean their cooker after each meal. I have an aunt who 20 year old cooker looks like new because she does clean it after using EVERY time but I'm afraid I have other things ( like writing reviews and holidays) to do. The griddle I wash in the sink not the dishwasher and soak it first then everything usually wipes off quite easily. The grill pan I do put in the dishwasher and it seems to come out clean - I do scrape any grease off with paper towels first though.
Instruction and installation booklet:
Also in the instruction booklet are all instructions on how to use each part - the timer, setting the clock and so on. Instructions on cleaning but also a big section on 'What do I do if ...... ? and helpful suggestions to try before calling in the repair man or bursting into tears. It is a good little reference and we have used it on a number of occasions - usually when we have a power cut to reset everything or setting the timer - the kind of things you forget if you are not using them regularly.
The booklet even has a section on using the ovens and where to put things in each oven what temperatures etc including the time these things should take in each oven.
At the back of the booklet it has instruction for conversion to LPG and other service instruction along with a warning that service must only be carried out by an authorised person. The instructions for installation are in this section also and they were used by our installation people. One lot installed the cooker physically and sorted out the electrics and then we had another gas installation person to sort out our gas about a week later because of our connection problem.
We have an extended warranty with our cooker which we bought with our kitchen from MFI and we were lucky enough to be looked after by someone my husband had taught at school. He gave us a very good deal and the warranty cost us no extra. We have used it as we noticed just after the cooker was installed, that there was a chip near the screw in one of the oven doors. I phoned up the number given and the lady explained they would have to send new doors for all the cooker - grill, both ovens and storage drawer so that there was a colour match. They posted these out and I had to see if there was a colour match with the cooker. Once I was happy with the match I was to call them back and then they would arrange an engineer to come and fit them. This is exactly what happened with no fuss at all and since then we broke off the tiny knob that sets the clock. I phoned gain and they posted out 6 of them so we now have spares. I certainly can't complain about that for service.
An excellent, reasonably priced cooker that will adequately serve a large family and is easy to cook with .If you are keen on cooking it offers a variety of cooking possibilities from a choice of two types of oven, one with a browning element at the top to the grill, griddle and wok burners as well a different sizes of normal burners. The gas burners provide instant regulation of heat while the electric ovens provide a more even temperature for oven cooking. It looks good and is quite easy to keep clean even for someone who isn't a constant cleaner. The after care service thought MFI's extended warranty is also to be recommended.
Also pulblished on Ciao under same name
Short name: Rangemaster CLAS110EC