If you love cooking then it’s likely you’ll be glued to your TV this November as Marcus Wareing, Monica Galetti and Gregg Wallace return to test the skills of some of the country’s budding professional chefs in MasterChef, the Professionals.
While these chefs will have the benefit of experts to gently guide, and ruthlessly judge, them as well as having access to heaps of restaurant kitchen equipment, for us at home, it’s probably a little more difficult. However, if you’re keen to dish up Michelin-style food, then the new wave of ovens is designed to give you a helping hand so are well worth considering when planning a new kitchen.
A few years ago, if you wanted to dish up the perfect roast beef, it was a matter of following a recipe and hoping for the best. Now many ovens have sophisticated programmes that essentially do the work for you. Models with built-in recipes mean all you need to do is prepare the food then simply select your chosen dish in the menu control, pop in minimal information such as the food’s weight, and press go. Viola, perfect beef en croute!
Controlling your oven’s functions through an app on your smartphone or tablet is definitely becoming more common, too. Brands such as Siemens, Bosch and Miele all have cookers in their range that you can both programme and monitor remotely using apps. These apps will also help you to connect appliances together such as hoods and hobs. Of course, they’re at the top end of their offering in terms of both ability and price point but as the technology becomes more common, as it did with induction hobs for instance, the cost will come down.
Miele’s recently launched 7000 series features ovens with cameras inside them that can operate at extreme temperatures, meaning you can now buy one that is pyrolytic (a self-cleaning feature that heats the oven to 500 degrees to burn off food residue, leaving just a layer of dust to wipe clean) as well as allowing you to keep an eye on your meal from the comfort of your chair while watching the MasterChef cooks sweat as they try to whip up the perfect seafood foam.
A touch-screen door on Hoover’s multifunction Vision oven allows you to change settings with ease and it features an in-oven camera so you can keep an eye on your food via the Hoover Wizard app, which also gives you access to video recipes and allows you to save your favourites for later.
Along with a pyrolytic function, the Samsung Chef Collection has Gourmet Vapour technology that helps to prevent food from drying out, producing succulent yet well cooked meals every time.
While all this technology can’t promise to make a professional chef out of you, it would be nice to think they could help you to achieve results that would keep even the harshest of judges happy!