Tuesday, 25 September 2012

Oven cleaning

This may be a boring post for so many people on so many levels, so feel free to come back tomorrow when there is pretty chairs or sinks on offer - I won't be offended!

It is about my most hated of tasks around the house.

Cleaning the oven.

We have a lot of baked lamb for dinner, usually a shoulder or a leg at least once a week. I am always cooking cakes and muffins for school lunches too, so my oven is on every single day. It gets pretty grimy and I tend to ignore the baked on charcoaly spatters until it is the biggest, most disgusting chore in the world that takes two days to do.

If I was a sensible person, I would wipe the oven out after every use. Sadly, I am no domestic goddess. After dinner, I just look at the mess in the oven and shrug a "Meh" as I sit down on the lounge to watch "Farmer wants a wife" or some other trash TV. Therefore, my oven always looks like a brown grease pit until it is seen to in another 6 months time.

The only reason I am cleaning the oven is because it has broken down. Yes, because an electrician is coming to fix my oven tomorrow I suddenly was inspired to clean it out. I was going to ignore it for another month, but it is suddenly a pressing issue when someone is going to be placing their head in there finding the source of why it broke down.

No, I won't post a photo of my oven! I won't subject you to that kind of abuse of the soul. I want to retain readers, not send them away screaming for the hills!

What has been seen can never be unseen.

So I will tell you my secret weapon I discovered.


Plain old Napisan.

I fill a sink with lots and lots of hot water and while it is running I pour a fair bit of Napisan in (about 2 or 3 scoops).

I place the racks in the Napisan water and soak them for a bit. Steel wool will help scrape the hardened chunks off and it works quite well. Rinse the racks off once you are done with water.

I have only tried this once and I didn't do the interior and the door with my Napisan mix. I used regular oven cleaner. I like Oven Power by Ozkleen. This is usually in the supermarket, and since it is an Australian company and it is not as fumy as other ones on the market, I like it immensely.

I give everything a go with the Oven Power and rinse it all off with super hot water and washing up detergent (Green Palmolive).

That's it! Not fancy, and not really natural. But it seems to work without killing you from chemical fumes other oven cleaners seem to do.

If I lived in the city, there is one job I would totally outsource and that is oven cleaning. I would gladly pay to get it done. Out here, I am the oven cleaner and I can dream away.

The next thing I am going to do is find a new oven.

The oven I have now is a cutesy Smeg. At the time my Sister-in-Law put the kitchen in it suited it to a tee. It is great for cooking, but it's interior cavity is as tiny as a microwave oven. Not too good if you want to cook a Christmas dinner for all the extended family. A bit of oven shuffling and careful planning is needed to cook for guests. So when I can, I am changing the oven and stove top.

One of those big purchases you can't afford to get wrong.

My requirements for this oven.

1. Big enough for cooking in.
2. Self cleaning (pyrolytic)
3. Induction cooktop.

Induction + Pyrolytic  in the one freestanding cooker is a new thing and when I priced the first one ever it came to $10,000.00.

I hope as the technology gets better, these things get cheaper.

I really like freestanding, but I may have to put in a wall unit separate to my cooktop to get what I want. Possibly two ovens to get the space I need. Not sure yet!

I know that if I have to change my oven, I will be wanting to update the kitchen too as it is currently built in.

I am not a fan of built in ovens and cook tops because when they break down it is difficult to fit a new one into existing cabinetry. There is my dilemma!

Anyone else have any oven dramas? Cleaning tips I need to know?

This is not me - I wouldn't be smiling whilst doing this.


  1. I still haven't made a firm decision on which oven to get for our new house. I too like the free-standing ovens, and if I had the cash, I would get a Wolf. We are renting at the moment and our kitchen is fitted out with Gaggenau appliances. The double-oven (wall mounted) is absolutely HUGE. In fact I haven't used the bottom one, haven't needed to. It too is pyrolytic, which is fantastic. I cook in it daily (lots of roasts too) and the self cleaning mode is wonderful - no more oven cleaner for me! xx

  2. BTW - which oven are you looking at buying? The Smeg freestanding induction stove has a 92L capacity and is self-cleaning. Our Gaggenau is 103L, but the Wolf is a massive 118L. My 4 boys are only small at this stage, but I know I'll need a huge oven once they reach their teens! xx

    1. Hi Caroline, I have been looking at that Smeg one you mentioned since it first came out. It is 10 grand, so it's on the dream oven list of course!

      I am checking out Belling, and I have had my eye on a Falcon cooker too. I am not sure how to go when I do, but I do like freestanding more than the built in ones. I wish I could just get all the features I want and the size I want in the one unit!

      I will have a look at Wolf - apparently they are really good too! Thanks Caroline.

  3. Just a tip - I have had 2 self cleaning ovens and it is a myth! They get just as dirty as any oven and definitely do not self clean.

    1. Thanks Anonymous, I have never seen a pyrolytic in real life day-to-day action so I am taking that on board when I go looking at ovens. I did wonder how they would get all the grime off by cooking itself intensively. Thanks for the commment!

  4. Individuals ovens applied in baking in the early seventeenth to 18th century are basically the identical concept as today's modern day oven that cooks your favourite cake at the coffee shop. And at some point, practically every house hold nowadays has an oven array in their kitchen area.

    Oven Cleaning brisbane | Oven Cleaning Melbourne

  5. Napisan? What an interesting suggestion for cleaning the oven racks. I have never once seen that one mentioned before.

    I have just looked up Oven Power by Ozkleen since you mentioned it. It looks like a good product. I have seen it in my local store, I will pick some up when I am next there.

    I really do dislike the task of oven cleaning, but hopefully with your suggestions it wont be so bad this time around.