“ Brand: Designer Habitat „
I purchased this for my Dad from Amazon and it cost £49 with postage. I can see them now with the same supplier at £40 with postage included. Now this isn't personally mine I will admit but I use it often as my Dad lives near by and I love it and want one in my own kitchen. We got him it as anything to make life a bit easier for him is good and not having to bend down to the oven getting things in and out or checking on the food cooking means this certainly makes his life easier. It is on the work top a a height perfect to see the food cooking and allow him to put the food in and out without struggling.
I first saw a Halogen oven a couple years ago and was surprised at what it was and what it could do. This big beauty can Roast, steam, bake, and fry. Now you can get a cake maker a grilling machine and chicken roaster as separate appliances but apart from the modern cooker and don't believe there is another appliance like this that is so versatile.
When this arrived it was in a big box protected by polystyrene and had some other bits included with the oven, some racks, skewers, user manual, recipe book, steamer ring and a small pan like a frying pan.
These come in all different sizes but this particular one is a 12 litre 1400w. It can however be made bigger by using an extension ring which is a metal ring shape like a cake tin without a base and it slots onto the top of the glass oven part then replace the top part meaning it has become larger. We have not needed to use this bit yet as the oven is fairly large as the picture above shows.
The main oven part sits on the base which keeps it from being in direct contact with the surface. The top part is slightly heavy but my Dad seems to manage it fine and the weight doesn't bother me at all as once the stuff is cooking you don't need to keep opening it for any reason. It's boxed weight is 5 kilos.
Now this oven cooks food 3 times faster then your usual oven. The first time we used it was to cook a large chicken with roast potatoes. You don't need to add any oil or fats to the food as the way it works it circulates the hot air and kind of cooks in it's own juices. Sure enough there was quite a bit of fat left when it had finished cooking but that had all come from the chicken. I usually add oil to cook roast potatoes so this was interesting to see that they cooked perfect without oil. This oven can easily hold food for 4 people in it at a time. It took approx 50-60 mins to cook the large chicken.
To use you simply plug into the mains making sure you have switched it on first at the wall! ( yep we thought it was broke first try lol) There are just two dials on the top, one is a timer and the other for temperature control. You set the temperature you require then set the timer. In the picture you can see the big white handle now to actually get the oven started once it is all in place you need to put the handle back down into its resting place I'll call it. If you need to start the oven then pull the handle back up. You'll know you have it down properly as the light comes on in the oven and you can hear the fan going then you'll know it has started to cook. The halogen bulb means it gives instant heat. Obviously as soon as the handle is u and you remove the top it has stopped else you'll be waving a hot light fan about.
Now this does get hot but not scorching hot to touch, not for me anyway but a child should not go near it, that includes mine that love to watch it and are being told to keep away constantly but they are mesmerized by it cooking and have to keep going back to see how the food is coming along, bit like I do really as love being able to watch the food cooking, maybe I'm weird but I can't see my roasts cooking in my oven without opening it up. My favourite bit about cooking chicken in it is watching the juices bubbling away under the skin! yep I'm strange lol. As the light is on and it starts to cook the colour starts to brown nicely not too dark though and apparently you can't burn food in this oven, nope I'm not going to experiment to find that out.
As well as traditional roasts in this I've done steamed fish potato and veg. You just wrap the food up in foil and it steams it to perfection. Lamb cutlets with chips and several other meals.
Even fried some bacon for my Dad once as I don't eat bacon.
Each time I've eaten a meal from this it has been lovely, no burnt edges on the chips, no not quite cooked chicken etc. The manual that comes with it will give you more meal ideas.
What are the advantages of this oven? Well it makes life easier no bending to oven, meals are healthier and food cooks faster which saves on electric. Do you want any more advantages? ok one more BIG advantage is that the oven is self cleaning, woohoo this has got to be one of the best inventions ever. When you are ready to clean it just pop a couple centimeters of water into the already emptied of oil and debris oven, add a small amount of washing up liquid then put the top on and on the temperature dial there is a wash setting turn it to that and the timer on a bout 10 minutes and push that handle down... It then heats the water and the water moves about a bit from the fan and it kind of cleans it. The manual says you can put the rack and other bits in too but I don't mind doing them by hand.
This review has turned into a rather long one but I wanted to give anything that you need to know.
Something I've not attempted yet is making cakes which is says you can do so that will be interesting and I can sit and watch them rise. I will update this review when I make the cakes which will hopefully be soon.