Coping with a broken oven
An oven is an important appliance in any kitchen, but if you have a family to take care of, you will likely rely very heavily on your trusty oven. There are plenty of dishes we can cook in a pan or in the microwave, but when it comes to pies, casseroles, roasts, etc., an oven is essential. If your oven has stopped working, here are some temporary solutions to help you get through this difficult time.
Is it Fixable?
First of all, you need to figure out whether your oven is fixable. Check the manual and work through the self-help troubleshooting guide. If this doesn’t work, contact a professional. You can do this via the Service Force website to make things efficient or look for a local repairman. Fingers crossed, you won’t have to live without your oven for more than a couple days. In the meantime, here are some handy meal solutions for an oven-free home.
Slow Cooker Meals
Slow cookers are a real godsend when your cooking facilities are limited. You can use a slow cooker to cook a one-pot meal. Place all your meat, vegetables, herbs, spices, and a small amount of liquid in the slow cooker first thing in the morning and by tea-time, you have a delicious meal ready and waiting.
Look online for some great recipes. There are a ton of them out there!
Fire Up the BBQ
If the weather is reasonable, why not take the opportunity to fire up your BBQ? A few nights spent cooking burgers, sausages, and chicken on the BBQ will be a break from the norm. Sure, it might get old cooking outside, but it saves making a huge mess in the kitchen. Use marinades to add extra flavour to the meat. Cook fish and baked potatoes in foil parcels. Prepare side dishes and salads to eat with your meat, fish, and veggie options.
This is a healthy way to cook, and in some countries, e.g. Australia, cooking meals on an open grill is an everyday event.
Microwave dinners have a bad reputation. Most supermarket microwave meals are loaded with extra salt, fat and sugar to make them more palatable. There is no doubt that eating too many mass-produced TV dinners is seriously bad for our health, but one night won’t kill you.
Don’t forget too that microwaves can be used to cook just about anything. The only thing you can’t do in a microwave is brown meat, but if your hob is working, cook your meat in the microwave and then brown it in a pan while you blast your vegetables. Alternatively, brown the meat first and then cook it in the microwave while preparing veggies on the hob.
Microwaved baked potatoes are not as crispy as oven-baked spuds, but they taste just as nice and make a healthy side dish to meat and veggies or salad.
Family and Friends
If you can’t rely on family and friends to help you out when your oven dies, the world is a sad place!
Let everyone know you are in a pickle and see who offers to cook for you and the kids. If you have five family members rush to the rescue, that’s five nights covered. Let them know that you will be happy to cook for them once your oven is fixed or replaced. That should sweeten the deal.
If your oven is out of action for longer than a few days, invest in a combination microwave/grill. This is basically a mini oven. You might struggle to roast a 20Ib turkey in there, but they are great for small joints, pies, pizzas, etc. You can also combine microwave with grill, for a well-cooked, crispy dish.