Things suitable for cooking - or baking - in a vintage electric combo broiling/frying pan?
I was given a vintage non-stick electric frying pan whose lid has a removable element that can be used for broiling (not simultaneously). It is identical to this one: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-Westi...
I have never used an electric frying pan but since this summer is so hot, it would be great to put it to use, and avoid my oven. The settings begin with "warm". The next is 200 degrees, and 400 is the highest. Can I use it like an oven, for things like pie, cookies, muffins? Casseroles?
I also wonder how good this type of pan is for broiling. There is a removable rack, and the broiling element is square so there's no direct heating at the very center of the pan. Depending on what was being broiled, the top of the food would be not more than 1.5" from the element, and maybe a lot closet.
Any suggestions/experiences from people who use such a pan would be appreciated. TIA
You can fry just about anything in it. It's also good to make "hot dish," brown ground meat, add liquid and pasta, seasoning. Yes, the classic, hamburger, tomatoes, macaroni, and some cheddar cheese was what I grew up with. You can do chicken breasts, adding stuff to make it a one dish meal, or just keep it to protein and the other stuff cooked separately.
I've also used it to make pancakes at the table.
Good for sausage gravy, or just about any kind of gravy.
If you used it for baking you'd need to have some method for elevating the baking pan above the bottom of the pan's interior surface. Otherwise you'd have conduction instead of convection and you'd burn your creation. But it might be fun to experiment with a small cake or quick bread in a shallow pan. The temperature control on those pans is often inaccurate so you'd need to find some method of monitoring the "air temperature" inside the closed space and those pans don't seal like you'd expect a quality range oven to seal.
The broiling element in your pan isn't intended to provide direct heat to the food you intend to broil. The heat is radiant and radiates from all sides of the element so it "broils" with a combination of radiant and convection heat. The radiant heat browns while the convection heat cooks.
Why not leave the broil element out of the equation and give the pie, cake, tart idea a try and let us know how it turns out. Sounds like fun ...