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Wife Wants to know the anwer to this Question HELP

PharmeggistPharmeggist Posts: 1,191
edited 8:39PM in EggHead Forum
Hi Fellow Egg-heads,
My wife wants to know how and why I think the BGE would do a better job at baking than our gas oven. The debate came up as I wanted to cook her homeade Lasagna and Meatloaf in the Egg. She understands about meat being better because of better moisture retention but she doesn't understand how Cakes, Brownies and anything else would be better. She thinks I have lost my mind!!
Help me convince her to tap the unused potential of our Large BGE I have given the pet name "Oscar". Help Oscar and me explain.[p]Many Thanks in advance, "Oscar" and Pharmeggist



  • dhuffjrdhuffjr Posts: 3,182
    Beyond pizza's I've not personally baked in my Egg yet.....yet.[p]I heard just this weekend folks commenting on how things turn out better. Fluffier and more moist were two comments.

  • Celtic WolfCeltic Wolf Posts: 9,773
    Pharmeggist,[p] Lump is cheaper them Natural Gas or Propane per BTU. The great outdoors gets heated instead of the kitchen (not a real good argument during the fall and winter). You are doing the cooking and not her.[p] That same moisture retention allows cakes to remain moist. Breads baked in stone hearths just seem to taste better. It may be green, but it's still technically a stone hearth.

  • Pharmeggist,
    I'd say your wife is right. The BGE is a cooking tool, nothing more. It does a lot of things very well, but don't go nuts.

  • Pharmeggist,[p]I'm new to the egg but I will do some sourdough bread in it next week and let you know then. It should work almost like a brick over for baking. AZ
  • Pharmeggist,
    I think your wife and my wife must be sisters. The problem is I find it hard to argue against their point.[p]So meat, vegetables and fruit go in the Egg; bread, cake, cookies, cobbler, and lazagna go in the oven.[p]Now pizza, that's a totally different story.

  • Morro Bay Rich,[p]We compete on the BBQ circuit. In Winchester, our cornbread took first place in ancillaries....fixed on the egg. In several other events our baked beans have finished first....also prepared on the BGE.

  • PujPuj Posts: 615
    Pharmeggist,[p]View the Egg as a cooking vessel, which allows you the option of cooking/baking/roasting either in your kitchen oven or in the Egg. With the Egg, there are many a meal that can now be prepared outside during the hot summer months instead of inside in the kitchen.[p]Puj

  • Go to this link - Maybe it will help convince her:
  • DobieDadDobieDad Posts: 502
    Pharmeggist,[p]I charted the temperature variation in our oven when we moved into this house three years ago. I set it to 350° and let the oven heat to temperature. I used a Polder-like thermometer to monitor the temperature at the center of the oven, where I would normally place a caserole. I wrote down the temperature every 3 minutes and charted the results.[p]Our oven spent little time at 350°. After it first got to temp it then declined 70° before the thermostat turned on the gas again. Then it swung to 390° before it turned off. This pattern repeated for an hour. So swings of -70° to +40° (a 110° range!) are what I can expect using my current oven.[p]You can guess the rest. I can set the BGE to 350° and it will stay within a few degrees, just by adjusting the vents. When I use my BBQ GURU I can keep even temperatures within a very narrow range indeed.[p]That did it for me![p]DD
  • Gas ovens are notoriously poor for baking, so I am a little surprised that your wife would be so wild about it. They are usually quite uneven in the heat distribution and they produce moisture as a result of the combustion, so they aren't usually ideal for baking. [p]Everyone here knows about my wife (yes the wife who dropped two cell phones into porta potties in 8 days) but have I told you about her friend Clive? Clive knows everything and Clive is never wrong. Clive plays the cello. Clive's wife thinks recreation is practicing singing Handel's Messiah. Clive ALMOST made it onto the BBC television show Mastermind for gosh sakes! Clive convinced me that a ceramic outdoor charcoal cooker was vastly superior to any sort of metal or gas cooker. So when Clive says gas ovens bad, electric ovens good, I believe and I bought a dual fuel range for this recent remodel.[p]So, I think you and Oscar just need to treat your wife gently and slowly but surely convince her that baking in the equivalent of a wood-fired brick oven is better than in a gas oven. Good luck![p]TNW
    The Naked Whiz
  • Pharmeggist,[p]With the Egg you have a smoker, a grill, a convection oven, a brick oven, and a kiln all in one unit. The only difference between using your wife's gas ove,n and using the Egg as an oven, would be the extra flavors imparted in the food from the charcoal. This is neither good nor bad, just different and a matter of taste. If you like a little smoke flavor in your Angle Food Cake, then it is good.
    Perhaps the problem your wife is having is not so much that one is better than the other, they are just a couple cooking tools, but that you are treading on her territory a bit? Which is more important, sharing the cooking and keeping peace in the household, or taking it over and developing resentment?[p]Mike

  • DobieDad,[p]Wow! That's quite a range. I'm going to check our convection oven today![p]My wife is very happy with me doing all the cooking outside in the Egg, or inside with the convection oven/range, so I don't have any territorial things going on here. [p]Mike
  • DobieDadDobieDad Posts: 502
    Michael B,[p]You will probably find that your convection oven has a much more narrow range.[p]I put an electric convection oven in our last home (hmmmm.... I don't even know whether they come in a gas version) because of the temp swing in the previous electric oven. I loved the convection oven, and was disappointed when I saw the 'professional' gas range in our current home. But I would rather buy another Egg than pay to replace our big honker.[p]My wife has actually increased her baking, now that we have the Eggs.[p]DD
  • It's a chi thing. I read in a Chinese herbal book that the energy imparted to food cooking with electric heat is inferior to that using gas, which is inferior to that using wood for heat.[p]There's also the ceramic reflectivity/hearth oven effect. Think giant sized garlic roaster or clay romertopf cooker.

  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 22,024
    <p />Pharmeggist,
    if a woman wants to cook her homemade lasagna in the oven for me, well please do, i dont like egged pasta and i do like it when someone makes me a lasagna. for that meatloaf however, the eggs the way to go, as well as bread. make her a simple ice cream bread. two cups softened ice cream, 1.5 cups self rising flour. bake in a pan for about 45 minutes over a clean 350 fire inderect til done. blueberry icecream bread goes good with the morning cofee

  • Pharmeggist,
    while agreeing with everyone else about the merits of baking in the egg, let me add another twist. ..[p]does your wife like classic italian dishes like lasagna?[p]howabout french provencial dishes like casseroles (i'm thinking beef/onions/potatoes, etc. . .?[p]if you think about most classic french or italian cooking, the recipes originated in italy and french, mostly just before or after world war two. ... and what were these classic dishes originally cooked in? . ..why, either coal or wood burning stoves and ovens. .. .so i would argue, that when you bake these dishes in the egg (with minimal additional wood added - you don't want them smokey) you are achieving a "rustic" flavored that has been lost over the years by cooking them in gas or electric ovens or stoves. . . i'm constantly taking recipes from folks like giada delaurantis and jacques pepin, and preparing them in the egg with fantastic results (souffles, tortes, cassseroles, classic french chicken, potato gallets, etc - all of which by the way can be found here with pictures just google). ..[p]so if she likes these things, tell her to pull out her favorite recipes, and you prepare them in the egg (again, be careful to have a clean burning fire with no additional wood so its not 'smokey' tasting) ...then see if she agrees. ...

  • cheese souffle
    DSCN0301.jpg[p]osso bucco
    DSCN0176.jpg[p]chicken roasted in the french style
    IMG_0157.jpg[p]crabmeat filled canneloni with bechamel sauce
    IMG_0120.jpg[p]choco chip kahlua cake with choco ganache
    DSCN1605.jpg[p]pancetta/parmesan torte
    DSCN1243.jpg[p]oxtail stew
    DSCN0987.jpg[p]potato gallette
    DSCN0875.jpg[p]peach/blueberry crisp
    DSCN0426.jpg[p]and the list goes on. ...each of these dishes, i believe (and my family concurs) benefits from the rustic flavor provided by being baked in what is esentially a wood burning oven. . .[p]

  • mad max beyond eggdome,
    That just isn't fair ... ceral didn't go very far today. I'm starving. [p]I made pumpkin bread at the fest and everyone commented about how moist it was. It was just a box recipe but the egg took it to a new level.[p]Doug

  • mad max beyond eggdome,
    DDDannng max me and the kids will be at your house for dinner

  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 22,024
    mad max beyond eggdome,
    gonna have to try that lasagna again, i see you dont put much cheese on top, will go that route next time. its so long ago that i tried lasagna on the egg, that i probably didnt have my fire burning clean etc. as i was still a little new to this. do you precook the noodles or use the other type, my italian sisterinlaw makes hers with the regular noodles, doesnt cook them first, but freezes the lasagnas to cook later and you cant tell the difference.

  • fishlessman,
    i cook my noodles first. . .and i put the sauce on top of the cheese so that there is not as smokey a flavor (the sauce absorbs less smoke than the cheese). .and i use a really clean burning fire, no wood. .. i've found that when i'm doing stuff like this, i usually let the fire burn a good 45 minutes to an hour prior to putting on the food. ..gets rid of any bitter smoke whatsoever. ..

  • DobieDad,
    I've got a convection gas oven. It does a fine job for baking although I've not checked the temp swings. I doubt it's as stable as the egg. For lasagna, the temp swings shouldn't matter much, but for a cake...

  • EdFEdF Posts: 121
    "Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking" - find it!

    Haven't tried lasagna in the egg yet, but I imagine it'd be awesome. The basic lasagna recipe in the book above uses only parmesan for cheese, lightly layered with a mixture of bechamel and bolognese sauces. Combined with homemade lasagna (which admittedly is a bit of a chore), you wind up with a light lasagna with about 7-9 thin layers of noodles and filling. It's really unbelievable.

    - Ed
  • dhuffjrdhuffjr Posts: 3,182
    Man oh man oh man that is looking GOOD![p]I'm hungry now.
  • fishlessman,[p]I've never heard of ice cream bread! How does it work?
  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 22,024
    <p />Michael B,
    old dave posted it a few years back, couldnt be simpler.
    Ice Cream Bread [p]2 cups ice cream, any flavor, softened
    1 1/2 cups self-rising flour[p]Mix together and pour into a greased 3x8 loaf pan. Bake at 350 F for 45-55 minutes or until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean.

  • PharmeggistPharmeggist Posts: 1,191
    mad max beyond eggdome,
    I will definately show her the pictures when she gets back home. She flew to CA to show our 8 month old girl to the grandparents and great grandparents. They won't be back till Sunday. Just the other night I cooked pizza on the egg... I bought a ready to bake one at Sam's Club it turned out egg-stradinoary. My wife like to bake homeade lasagna... just got to convince her to let me do the baking in the BGE.[p]THanks again for the reply and pictures, Pharmeggist

  • Pharmeggist,
    just keep it a really clean burning egg initially. ..don't give her an excuse to say "too smokey".'ll get there. ..

  • hayhonkerhayhonker Posts: 576
    <p />Pharmeggist,
    Oh yes she must let you cook the lasagna on the egg. Make sure to use a heat barrier (platesetter) to minimize the chance of burning.
    Oak lump makes for a tasty dish of italian.

  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    dunno much about the 'mechanics' of the system (ceramic dome acting like a brick oven, etc.) but i DO know that much of the reason we try typical 'oven' stuff on the egg sometimes is because we wish to have it a bit more rustic.[p]smoke free cooking is decidedly a NEW concept in human history. granted, we aren't cooking venison on a spit over an open fire, but most folks cooked with wood up until very recently.[p]and bread is one of the oldest things we humans baked.[p]one of the other added results (which i think is a benefit) of a brick oven is the hint of smoke you get. the coals in a brick oven were usually pulled out just before the loaves went in, but i gotta think in that environment there was some smoke around.[p]we had an old enamel stove in the basement (when i was more of a kid) which we heated the house with and often cooked on. it made wonderful bread, but we had no clue about temp control. even in an enclosed cast iron oven, there was a hint of smoke to the bread. hell. there was a hint of smoke to the HOUSE.[p]as always, a bit long-winded, but in earnest.[p]for my 40th birthday, we did beef wellingtons on the egg. i couldn't help but think that the recipe was old enough that they probably didn't cook it in an electric oven, or with gas. the fire was clean burning, and the hint of smoke gave it a very rustic 'countryside' feel.[p]wanna really freak her out? tell her that when your egg is at 350, it stays there. when the elctric oven says 350, it is actually cycling on and off and on and off, and going from (something like) 335 to 365 then back to 335 and on again to 365.... riding a little wave which averages 350 (or whatever temp you set it at).[p]i don't see the egg as some "going nuts" alternative to cooking things in a 'regular' oven. fire has cooked far more food than electricity has.

    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
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