Does the thought of 8 burners, dual convection and miles of stainless steel get your heart racing? Maybe you’re set on that ceramic flattop stove that’s so easy to clean, or the traditional 4 burner gas cook top that’s been reliable for years. Whatever your preference, the range is undoubtedly the heart of any kitchen. It’s where everyone congregates waiting for that perfectly bronzed turkey to emerge on Thanksgiving, or that succulent glazed ham on Easter.
Probably the most well known company in premium stoves is Viking Range Corporation. They claim to have the most “popular widths, surface configurations and color finishes” around. Viking offers widths from 24″ to 60″ with all gas or dual fuel options. (Dual fuel means the cook top is gas while the oven is electric.) The home cook can achieve perfection in cooking with 15,000 BTU burners along with a low simmer setting to heat the most delicate sauces. The oven can be set for convection or conventional baking.
Dacor offers several professional style ranges for home cooks. Besides being a truly beautiful stove to look at, the options with a Dacor range seem endless. The Dacor Epicure offers an infrared ceramic gas broiler. This allows the indoor cook to achieve the flavor and texture of grilling outdoors while never leaving the kitchen. There is a filtration system that ensures an entire meal can be prepared all at the same time with each dish in the oven retaining its own flavors. The Perma-Flame feature allows seamless cooking by re-igniting the burners at exactly the same level as when they were put out. There is much more to say about this oven, but you can see it for yourself at www.dacor.com.
The term “convection” causes some confusion among people. A convection oven is an oven with a high-powered fan inside that circulates the hot air evenly around the food, generally cooking it faster than conventional means. There’s a difference between convection, true (or European) convection and dual convection, however. True convection means there is a third heating element where the fan is located so that the air it is blowing around is hot as it enters the oven cavity. Dual convection (not to be confused with dual fuel) is a newer option (available from brands like Wolf) that has two heated fans plus two elements for more even cooking. The bottom line is, if an oven is described simply as convection, you might want to find out exactly which type. True convection is the tried and true system used by most professional cooks.
When you are getting ready to shell out some serious dough (no pun intended) for a premium oven, think about your needs in the kitchen. Do you bake more than you cook? Some ovens contain a different type of heating element that will achieve near perfection in baking even if every rack is used. It’s called a butterfly element and (alongside true convection) you may wonder how you managed to live without it.
The real point is, the more you love your oven, the more you will use it to offer your family more home-cooked food more often. Whatever it takes for that to happen, is probably worth the price.