A couple of weeks ago I wrote a review about one of my bargain kitchen products that I managed to purchase very cheaply from a kitchen showroom. Sadly the warming drawer isn't really a necessity to most kitchens, unlike the product I've decided to review today... an oven! I've currently got a Flavel oven (where do they come up with these brand names?) in my kitchen and have had it for over a year now. Luckily I managed to get it at a discounted price due to the kitchen showroom refurbishing some of its kitchen models... which kept my dad happy! Despite not being the best cook in the world (beans on toast is my specialty and if I'm feeling really creative I'll even add a bit of cheese!) I feel I've used it enough to now write a review of it.
An oven is very much a necessity in a kitchen these days (unless you're of the microwave student generation) and therefore I knew we had to purchase one. We originally looked at several different models before settling on the Flavel FBU71X model due to it being brand new but much cheaper than many similar models. The oven is predominately black in colour with stainless steel areas in terms of the control panel and the handles. Visually it doesn't look as hi tech or as modern as some of the other models I looked at but I was reassured by the simplicity of the control panel (for me that's a BIG deal!) and how sleek it looked too. It's advertised as being a twin cavity fan oven and grill in that it has two separate compartments if you like. It's 72cm in height, 59cm in width and 55cm in diameter which I believe is quite a standard size for ovens.
The fan main oven has a capacity of forty five litres and located at the bottom while the top cavity offers a dual circuit grill which has a capacity of 33 litres. Both have double glazed doors which are black around the edges and transparent in the middle area. Above the grill is the control panel which features a five button LED clock (this allows you to set timers and also to set the oven to come on at a certain time - I've yet to master this latter facility!) and three stainless steel dials. On the left hand side is the stainless steel knob to control the grill while on the right two stainless steel knobs which are used to control the oven. Inside the oven are two silver shelf racks while the grill features one shelf rack and a grill pan which came included.
Operating the grill is incredibly easy - I have yet to set the fire alarm off or to horrifically burn anything which is a huge improvement on my previous year's cooking! To operate the grill you simply need to turn the left hand knob to the temperature setting required which is measured from one to six. I find it heats up within about two to three minutes which is ideal as when drunk cheese on toast is a firm favourite of mine, or rather bread and cheese mash! If I had to wait any longer than three minutes I'd be at risk of falling asleep and leaving the grill on all night... I had a bad experience with fish finger cooking when at university! Operating the oven is also incredibly easy, although as there are two knobs involved it can be considered more of a challenge! The first one allows you to select the temperature while the second one allows you to select the oven setting (for example fan oven). It takes a variable time to heat up depending on the setting but I do find it heats up quicker than my mum's older oven and I've never had reason to complain about it. Once it has reached its required heat an indicator light next to the clock will go out so you know it's ready. I also like the fact the oven has a light in (yes I'm easily pleased I know) as I like to check things aren't black!
The Flavel FBU71X oven is currently priced at around £450 but this does vary depending what website you look on. I managed to secure myself a nice little bargain when I paid only £200 for this model as I got it at less than half of the retail price. It also came with a two year guarantee for parts and labour but luckily I haven't had reason to use the guarantee at all... and also haven't managed to give anyone food poisoning!
I've had this oven for over a year now and in that time my confidence with cooking has definitely grown... I'd say I'm now using the oven about twice a week which is a huge improvement on my student days when the sight of an oven and cook book would bring me out in a cold sweat! I've never had any problems with either the grill or the oven, they've always heated up quickly and cooked my food thoroughly (just like a good oven should)! I find them both incredibly easy to operate and imagine that, even without an instructions booklet, I could have worked it out (just)! The clock and the timer feature is brilliant (I know most ovens probably have these but it never fails to impress me) and the automatic turn on feature is also great (I just need to know how to work it and then it'll be even better)! I'd thoroughly recommend the Flavel FBU71X oven to anyone considering a new one as I've got absolutely no reason to complain about it... at the end of the day it's got an oven light and an oven timer as well which is enough for me... cooking food is just a bonus in my opinion!
Thanks for reading!
Flavel FBU71X Built Under twin cavity Fan Oven and grill / Stainless Steel, Fan Main Oven, Variable Grill in Top Cavity,Programmable Oven Timer on Main Oven, 45 Litre Capacity in Main Oven, 33 Litre Capacity in Top Oven, Energy Rating B / Short name: Flavel FBU71X