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the joy of having to bake

i accidentally posted this to the LA boards, apologies for the double.

i'm house-sitting for the next few weeks at a place where the gas stove doesn't work, but the oven does. so no frying, sauteing, boiling. (i do have an electric teakettle so i can still bring water to boil.) i am stumped. i discovered today that you can 'bake' eggs in the shell, but other than that all i can think of for warm food are variations on bread, baked potatoes and roasted vegetables. could i make hot cereal for example? how would you cook things like beans, rice, pasta, soup, from start to finish using only the oven? any other great meals you can think of?

or should i just look at this as an opportunity to live on cake for a while?

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  1. I vote for your last sentence. That really seems to be the only sane thing to do! lol :)

    Kidding aside, would you have access to a microwave to help you out? Or maybe bring a small one with you? This could help with a few things like hot cereal, rice, etc. I'm sure the seasoned CHers out there will have many good answers for you soon.

    I still vote for cake though!

    1. Make Quiche. If you need blanched veggies for them your electric teakettle can be of use. It's good for breakfast, lunch & Dinner (just not all in the same day) depending on what you put in it. You can't cook bacon, but there's pre-cooked bacon in the supermarket.
      Obviously, you can't sauté onions and such, so that's out of the recipe, as are any watery veggies you won't be able to sweat before adding, unless you want to try roasted veggies in the quiche (not necessarily a bad idea, actually.)

      Yes, you can bake oatmeal: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/640769
      Also, there's Indian Pudding (made with cornmeal).
      And you Can bake rice: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/al...

      You didn't mention meats, but aside from the biggies like roasts, you can also bake meatballs and/or sausages.

      Chow just posted this soup made entirely in the oven: http://www.chow.com/assets/2010/02/ba...

      2 Replies
      1. re: mcsheridan

        I just saw where you corrected yourself about the baking of the bacon (doesn't that have a nice ring to it?). So I'm editing my reply where I attempted to correct you.

        1. re: JerryMe

          Everything connected with bacon has a nice ring to it. :)

      2. You could buy an electric frying pan pretty cheaply and it would expand your abilities. Or buy a 1 burner hotplate.

        I've seen a bunch of recipes for baked rice dishes.

        I've made lasagna with no-cook noodles, so that's one way to do pasta, and I bet if you played around with noodles and water in the oven you'd be able to figure something out for pasta in general. You just need to get it above boiling point, right?

        You can make steel cut oats in a crockpot so I'm sure you could do the same in the oven, cooking overnight for hot cereal in the morning.

        1. I'm sure you can do lots of stuff in the oven (I had to cook out of a toaster oven and a hot pot for a year once) you just have to get creative. Quesadillas, casseroles, baked proteins and pastas etc. Just out of curiosity though, have you tried lighting the burners? It may just be that the gas is coming out you just need to light it. Good Luck :-)

          3 Replies
          1. re: Sproutling

            oh sproutling, if you could see the big sad pile of burnt matches on my counter...

            thanks for the ideas though guys! it's a fun challenge. quiche is on the menu for sure. but i had never thought of baking rice, and it looks great! and i haven't ever actually baked meatballs so that sounds good.

            i'm going to file the baked oatmeal under "cake". :)

            my plan for the pasta is to pour boiling water over it and let it set for a bit then bake. sigh. no fancy bechamel though.

            i have cooked oats/wheat in a crockpot overnight before, but i haven't decided what temperature it would need to be at in the oven. and from the looks of the alton brown rice recipe the ratio of grain to water might need to be tweaked.

            1. re: hereticfig

              And lest we forget, nature's most perfect food: Pizza!

              PS: I must have been half-awake when I posted before; Of Course You can Bake Bacon. :D

              1. re: hereticfig

                You can cut the sugar and butter in baked oatmeal quite a bit and still get a decent tasting product. I added a bunch of peel-on, chopped apple, dried fruit and nuts too. A nice breakfast, but not quite dessert :)
                Frittata of course is baked in the oven, also not sure how you baked eggs in the shell? Intriguing! But they can also be baked, unbeaten, in ramekins with cheese, veggies, even over a round of bread.

            2. I've cooked rice, soups, beans, oatmeal, bacon, sausage, assorted veggies including those that are frozen and in a can in the oven. I've also cooked pasta like penne and lasagna noodles in the oven; with this you have to wait until the water is steaming before adding the pasta, then stir it occasionally.

              When I worked at my last restaurant job, we did our daily rice dish in the oven as well as the breakfast sausage & bacon...and oven french toast.