Keep Your Oven Dirty for the Holidays! Please

Keep Your Oven Dirty for the Holidays! Please

Photo by on UnsplashIf you are among the many who want everything perfect for your holidays, you might want to rethink what you do to make your oven perfect along with the place settings and center piece. Most ovens today have a self-clean feature. The way this works is to heat your oven to somewhere between 600 and 800 degrees. In layman’s terms, I think it’s close to the temperature of the sun😊.

One of the common repair requests we get, especially around holidays, is to “UNLOCK MY OVEN!” (I put this in caps to illustrate the frantic nature of these calls). What some people forget, or don’t know, is that after self cleaning, the oven needs to cool down before a sensor unlocks the door, and allows you to put your pumpkin pie (Mom’s old recipe) into the oven. Then some customers, out of frustration, will attempt to force the door open, compounding the problem.
Side Note: Don’t we all have some weird recipe that was handed down through generations, that isn’t necessarily all that good, yet we MUST make it every year?

First, understand that the self-cleaning process is realistically an all-day affair. The initial heat up and cleaning process can be four hours, then possibly another two hours for the cool down. Second, because of the high temperatures involved, self-cleaning has more potential to cause a needed repair than normal cooking. Third, remove your racks before self-cleaning, unless your don’t care that the chrome will be cooked off (read the User/owner manual for your particular oven).

The bottom line is that I recommend that you only self-clean your oven at least a month before any critical event.

Lastly, self-cleaning is just a maintenance cleaning. It won’t get rid of the left over juice from a roast that was spilled last year, or that blob of, well, whatever it is, that you have no memory of. Large spills of juice or food need to be cleaned the old fashioned way BEFORE you self-clean.

My mom’s Cranberry Relish Recipe:
1 package of fresh cranberries (4 cups)
1 ½ Cups of Sugar
3 peeled delicious apples
1 large orange (with peel)
Grind all ingredients except sugar in a food processor or grinder
Add sugar and let it set overnight in the refrigerator
Absolutely scrumptious…really! (plus you can think of my mom when you serve it)

Happy Holidays,
Rich Johnson, Nov 2017