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Wolfgang Puck Pressure Oven

Pipenta Oct 12, 2013 04:59 PM

The bastard child of a pressure cooker and a toaster oven. Might be really nifty, might be ridiculous. I'm wondering what's involved with cleaning the thing.

Anybody got one? Review it for us plz?

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  1. Pipenta RE: Pipenta Oct 12, 2013 05:10 PM

    I just want to mention that the only reviews I'm seeing on line are by bloggers who've been comped the thing and are just wetting their pants with excitement from getting a free big ticket item. Gah. I gather it is nice. It's big and it shines - woo hoo. But I want to hear about it from someone who either did not get it for free, or at least a jaded professional who is perfectly capable of looking a gift horse in the mouth, someone who won't just regurgitate the promotional material like a seventh grader pasting a term paper together right off wikipedia. Two sentences jammed in at the end to the effect that the reviewer has made two recipes in the damn thing and gosh, they turned out delicious, is not sufficient to count as a review.

    *facepalm*

    My mom is thinking about the damn thing.

    So yeah, I want a regular chowhounder's feedback, or at least a known grouch.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Pipenta
      z
      Zwolf RE: Pipenta Mar 9, 2014 11:00 AM

      To start off with, I am not much of a cook if that, but I like technology so like a sucker on HSN I got one. I cooked hot dogs on it the first time, came out good. But I return the oven because it came in damaged from shipping. That was. ThanksGiving time. Order another one Christmas time! that too came in damaged! this time I called Wolfgang Puck and shipped the damaged one back and they shipped me another one. Well , they failed to tell me to only send only the oven back and keep all the other parts. So I got the oven with no pans or racks. I called them back and they shipped just about every thing that was missing, and now we are in business. We have cooked chicken breasts and wows, did it come out great. Reheated it up the next day and it was still perfect. next time we did chicken breast again, but some one did not read the dial right and for the first 20 minutes, it was on warming, so needless to say, it was not cooked, just the crusty topping we put on was browned. Corrected the setting and cook it again for 20 minutes and the results was as good as the last time. Looks like I am going to be learning how to cook more stuff in this oven now besides chicken and hot dogs ! Got my eye on the roasted veggies now.

      It took 3 times to get the oven here with out shipping damaged and I am glad I didn't give up on them to get it right. Both the first two ovens had the damage on the same right side. Not very well packaged for shipping.

      Now I am looking for some recipes for this oven online since I am still missing the cook book, that is coming soon.

    2. breadchick RE: Pipenta Oct 13, 2013 07:27 AM

      So, with a bad case of insomnia, I saw this thing on a shopping network the other night.

      Two things - 1) yes, it does look like it can cook a small turkey (if that's the size that works) however, the bottom of the turkey looks flabby and more steamed than roasted. 2) someone called in and asked about cleaning it, and was brushed off with a quick reply "just wipe it down after use." Well, that means trying to wipe burned on spatters around the coils? Doesn't seem easy to me.

      However, it did look like it did well as a rotisserie, but then why spend all that money when a Ronnie Ronco system is half the price? (My brother-in-law swears by his - I've never used one or had food cooked in one.)

      The other uses: roasting veggies, baking muffins, etc? I'd save counter space/money and use my oven, as I've done since forever.

      I also would be interested in hearing from others.

      1. eperdu RE: Pipenta Oct 13, 2013 08:39 AM

        I like his products, in general. I would recommend if you buy one get it from HSN and try it out a lot in the first 30 days. If it doesn't do what you want or perform how you want--return it. They have a great return policy.

        Now, the market this product is aimed at is NOT usually a chowhound. It is for the person who is willing to accept that the bottom of the chicken isn't browned but wants something fast to make dinner.

        The same people who think they can get a rotisserie chicken out of a crock-pot and are happy with the results. :)

        1. t
          tahoeaway RE: Pipenta Oct 22, 2013 08:20 AM

          I got sucked in by the HSN demonstration on the Wolfgang Puck pressure oven and just had to order one. Even with being sucked in I was exceptionally skeptical about how well it would cook or if everything would go as promised. Before ordering it I did read the reviews on HSN from previous purchasers but felt most probably were novices and crockpot cookers. I figured with the extended holiday returns and flexpay that I could get some really good use out of it with almost no risk incase it didn't deliver as promised. Just to give a little background although I'm a home cook I did complete some culinary training and have worked in the restaurant industry for years. I also consider myself a semi gourmet cook and make my own cheese and butter at home, I've also used a high end Fagor Pressure cooker for years with great results.
          Anyways the oven was delivered a couple days ago and I just fired it up last night. The instruction manual and recipe book isn't exactly the best and I was planning on roasting a large (6lb) Spaghetti Squash and a 5lb Free Range Chicken (whole) for dinner. This was my first shot using the oven and the recipe book was of little help. I figured I'd roast the squash whole firstly as a test run and then throw the chicken in. I roasted the squash for 35 minutes at 400 degree's pressure setting (with just a few slits so it wouldn't explode) and it turned out perfect. Also after I roasted the squash, even when cut open it just steamed and steamed for roughly 1 hour afterwards. This oven didn't just cook the squash but it REALLY just exhuded heat, even with that it wasn't mushy or remotely overcooked.
          Next I roasted a whole uncut free range chicken. I was too lazy to assemble the spit for the first time and was disappointed that the recipe book only offered a rotissirie recipe for a whole chicken and the regular pressure setting chicken recipe was for a cut up chicken. I figured I'd just add 10 minutes to make sure it was actually cooked all the way thru. Well this chicken turned out fantastic. It was perfectly browned on the outside and super crispy skin, the inside was one of the most juicy and flavorful chickens I've ever done. The only seasoning I used on the chicken was a small rub of butter under the skin and a light sprinkle of cajun seasoning on the outside. Like I said the chicken was perfect and the broth that came off of it was like liquid gold.

          To address a couple concerns that other's mentioned, I can see value in the complaint that other reviewers have about not having the option to turn the oven light on. Also I did raise my chicken off the base of the pan so that the bottom skin could get browned. If the skin is on the bottom of the pan then obviously it's going to be swimming in the broth and not brown. This isn't a deal breaker for me though because that's just how it is in any oven. Just either insert a small rack in the bottom of the pan or prop the chicken up on an ovensafe dish or potato. The only somewhat draw back that I saw with the oven is that there is no way to temp the meat while cooking, this is the same deal with a regular pressure cooker basically. If you want to check and see if the meat is done or at temp then you have to depressurize the whole oven and then check the meat and then again raise it to pressure. I'm sure this could be avoided if you had some type of temp gauge inserted in the meat that could be read thru the glass but I'm not sure if it's safe to use those under pressure or not. Again this isn't a big deal for me because this is basically the same situation with a pressure cooker. You go by timing and just "Know" in XYZ minutes the meat will be done. It might not be the best way to cook a steak but I'm not sure why anyone would want to cook a steak in a pressure oven anyways (3 minutes to medium??).

          The inside of the oven was surprisingly clean after cooking. There was virtually no splatter from my skin on chicken or spaghetti squash. After releasing the pressure you would basically just wipe any splatters off easily while the oven is hot anyways. It really does seem like easy clean up to me. Truthfully there's way less mess than I get in my regular large convection oven at home and I have a feeling that is because the pressure oven doesn't use a fan. It's keeping the moisture and juices inside instead of blowing it all over the oven.

          Overall I'm thrilled with it so far and can't wait to do a Roast Beef tomorrow night and cook my Thanksgiving turkey in it. Also it doesn't heat up your kitchen like your large oven would and that's a huge benefit for anyone living in Florida. I'm toying with the idea of taking it with us in the RV but I'm not sure how many watts it pulls.

          Time will tell on the pressure oven but this skeptic is exceptionally pleased with their purchase! Sorry this is so long but figured I would rather be more detailed than not. Attached is a photo of our chicken 5 minutes before I pulled it out.

           
          5 Replies
          1. re: tahoeaway
            breadchick RE: tahoeaway Oct 22, 2013 05:42 PM

            Thank you for your detailed reply. The picture looks great, and I'm glad you aren't disappointed! I still won't get one, for space and budget reasons, but it's nice to hear that stuff sold on TV can live up to what is advertised.

            Good luck with your experiences!

            1. re: tahoeaway
              e
              ellabee RE: tahoeaway Oct 24, 2013 03:16 PM

              The oven specs at the site (and I'd hope somewhere in your manual) say that it pulls 1700 watts.

              http://puckoven.com/oven-specs.html

              1. re: tahoeaway
                c
                CaliforniaJoseph RE: tahoeaway Oct 28, 2013 05:24 AM

                Useful review

                1. re: tahoeaway
                  k
                  Kathy J RE: tahoeaway Dec 12, 2013 07:18 AM

                  Thanks for the great review.

                  I just bought one and it is on the way. I was feeling a bit guilty for spending that much money.

                  It will be great to use during the hot AZ summer months.

                  1. re: Kathy J
                    t
                    tahoeaway RE: Kathy J Dec 12, 2013 08:54 AM

                    Hope you enjoy the oven as much as I have. I use it almost daily and it's so great in the Florida heat to not have to turn on my big oven and heat up the whole house.

                2. drongo RE: Pipenta Oct 22, 2013 09:03 AM

                  Does anyone know what pressure the oven reaches? I could not find this on the website -- just that is has a "controlled, pressurized environment". As a benchmark, a domestic pressure cooker typically reaches 15 psi.

                  I am wondering whether the key aspect is the pressure per se, or whether it's the moist environment maintained through the semi-sealed chamber (compared to what you get with a regular oven). I suspect the latter myself (and that the level of overpressure is very low).

                  EDIT: I looked at one of the videos, and based on how quickly Wolfgang Puck was able to depressurize and open the oven, I believe I'm right to think the pressure is very low. So I think the faster cooking is because one uses a higher temperature setpoint than with a regular oven (e.g. 450F vs. 350F) and the key is the reduced evaporation due to moist environment.

                  7 Replies
                  1. re: drongo
                    t
                    tahoeaway RE: drongo Oct 22, 2013 10:40 AM

                    IDK what the pressure reaches in the oven but I will say there is quite a bit of pressure build up. It takes less time for my pressure cooker to release than it did for the oven. Not sure if that's a good guide or not but it really does seem to build up pretty quickly and would assume it's similar to what a normal pressure cooker (not pressure canner) generates.

                    1. re: tahoeaway
                      drongo RE: tahoeaway Oct 22, 2013 10:54 AM

                      Thanks tahoeaway. But I continue to think that it's NOT "similar to what a normal pressure cooker (not pressure canner) generates."

                      But I don't see that the pressure is what's important.

                      In a standard pressure cooker, the cooking medium is mostly water -- which won't get much over 212F at atmospheric pressure. So to get the cooking medium to a higher temperature, one needs to go above atmospheric pressure. At 15 psi gauge you can get water up to 250F.

                      In an oven, on the other hand, the cooking medium is mostly air, and you can heat air to as high a temperature as you care to go (at some point you'll form a plasma, but that's for high-energy physics labs). So you don't need pressure to raise the temperature of the cooking medium. But the problem with an oven is that it's dry (unless you have steam injection, as do some commercial ovens). I think this is what the Puck Oven (aka KitchenTek NovoOven) is trying to address. It allows you to cook at a higher temperature without drying out the food excessively. You could cook at the same temperature in a regular oven, but the food might get too dry.

                      Another factor that may impact the performance of the Puck Oven is that moist air may have better heat transfer characteristics than dry air. I suspect this is secondary (if it's significant at all).

                      1. re: drongo
                        t
                        tahoeaway RE: drongo Oct 22, 2013 11:06 AM

                        I'm not honestly familiar with all the science behind that. The only background I'm using is my own personal use of a fagor pressure cooker and my own pressure canner. Everything you said made sense but the science behind all this is really out of my league. It did take us somewhere between 3 to 5 minutes to de-pressure the oven after cooking for 40 minutes at 450.

                        1. re: tahoeaway
                          e
                          ellabee RE: tahoeaway Oct 24, 2013 03:08 PM

                          And your Fagor pressure cooker takes *less* than 3-5 minutes to de-pressure? or did you mis-state here:

                          :: It takes less time for my pressure cooker to release than it did for the oven. ::

                          I have two Fagor pressure cookers, and it usually takes at least 7 minutes and sometimes almost 20 to release pressure with natural release (just turning off burner and leaving it be).

                          1. re: ellabee
                            t
                            tahoeaway RE: ellabee Oct 28, 2013 05:35 AM

                            I release the pressure on my Fagor and do not just let it set and naturally release. Same thing with the oven. If you let it naturally release then it ads cooking time to the dish which typically I try to avoid. I've even used the true quick release feature with running cold water in the sink but it always makes me a little nervous.

                            I will say that I have now cooked bacon and some other dishes in the oven and everything has turned out great. The bacon didn't splatter all over the oven and the mess was almost nonexistent. Next on the list will be trying to actually bake something in the oven but I'm trying to watch carbs for the moment so that will have to wait.

                    2. re: drongo
                      pamf RE: drongo Oct 27, 2013 09:37 AM

                      In the video I watched it looked like he released the pressure valve and then there was a quick editing cut to opening the oven. The magic of video :)

                      1. re: drongo
                        drongo RE: drongo Oct 28, 2013 12:04 PM

                        On their Facebook page, they state "The oven creates a low pressure environment, just 1 psi" https://www.facebook.com/WolfgangPuck...

                        So it's much lower than the 15 psi for a typical domestic pressure cooker. I'm not suggesting there's anything wrong with this -- just that I think it's more about maintaining a moist environment than the pressure per se. You can get moisture control with a commercial RATIONAL oven - but one of those would cost about $20,000 (and fill half your kitchen).

                      2. w
                        Westy RE: Pipenta Oct 28, 2013 11:10 AM

                        Is this the same as a..."Broaster"?

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: Westy
                          drongo RE: Westy Oct 28, 2013 12:10 PM

                          I think a "Broaster" is a type of pressurized deep fryer, operating up to 15 psi.

                          1. re: Westy
                            c
                            CaliforniaJoseph RE: Westy Oct 29, 2013 01:24 AM

                            No.

                          2. c
                            CaliforniaJoseph RE: Pipenta Oct 29, 2013 01:26 AM

                            "he bastard child of a pressure cooker and a toaster oven. "

                            As a bastard child myself I'll just note you seem pre-prepared to hate on this.

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