OTG or An Oven Toaster Griller is a popular choice in India for baking. In this article, how to use an OTG, how to pre-heat, the bake ware you could use and more! Most OTGs have similar features.
Do read your manual for instructions, Please take this video as a general guide. With usage, you will figure out what works best for you in your oven. This is my Morphy Richards oven, 40 liters capacity. You could also check Bajaj and Sunflame.
Let’s take a look at the accessories which come with the OTG. This wire rack is for baking and for toasting. You could keep your baking tray on this wire rack.
This is the non-stick baking tray which comes with your OTG. You could use this for baking breads, pizza. Am not sure how well it would work for cookies. This is the removable crumb tray.
It will keep the floor of the oven clean. Then this is rotisserie rod used mostly for cooking meat. And this to pull out your baking tray. But I prefer to use two thick cotton towels for better grip.
You get separate rotisserie tongs too. Now let’s take a look at the oven OTGs have these heating elements at the bottom and at the top. You could turn on one or both of them simultaneously. And there is a fan if your oven has convection mode.
And then a light which lights up the chamber. And then there are these grooves which run along the entire wall, so your tray will slide in and out easily. You can place the baking tray or wire rack in one of these grooves, depending on your need and what works best for you.
Ovens with less capacity do not come with the fan and the light,have fewer grooves. And OTGs have these 3 knobs, one for the temperature, one for setting the function and then this one for the timer. This is the temperature knob, the maximum temperature in OTGs is 250C. And to set the temperature you would have to take a rough estimate and set the knob approximately. Often the temperature inside the oven and the temperature you set may vary and this can be tricky.
So it is recommended that you use an oven thermometer for setting the temperature. This is the function knob which will help you set the mode on which you want to bake according to your need and what works best for you. When you turn the knob to the grill function, only the top heating element heats up.
And when you turn it to convection, both the top and bottom elements heat up with the fan on. And then we have the toast function with both the top and bottom elements on, but there won’t be fan. And then we have the bake function where the bottom element heats up. And then the rotisserie function with the top element heating up and the rotisserie turning constantly. I wish my oven had a function where I could switch on the convection function with just the bottom element on.
But that function is not available in my oven. I prefer to bake with just the bottom element on and the rack in the second groove. You could also try baking on convection mode but it can be tricky at times.
If you bake with just the bottom element on and you want your bread or cake to look a little darker, you can place your bread on the rack and turn on the top heating element just for a minute or two for a darker color. Baking simultaneously on two levels may not always work. But if your oven is large enough you can try placing 2 tins side by side. Just make sure there is enough space between the 2 tins and the walls of the oven. I know this sounds confusing but you will need to experiment with your oven and stick to what works best for you.
And then there is this timer knob, you can set it to a maximum of 90 minutes. In case you want to the oven on for longer, then you could just turn it on ‘stay-on’ mode, which will help keep your oven on till you turn it off manually. And to put the oven on stay-on mode, you will need to turn the knob anti-clock wise. For bake ware you could use either ceramic, oven-safe glassware , aluminum or even silicon. I prefer to use aluminum.
Be sure the baking tin you are using is not too big for your oven, once you keep it inside the oven there should be enough space around the tin. And you should be able to close the door fully. Even if the door is slightly open, the heat will keep escaping and your cake or cookies may not bake properly.
Whenever we bake anything, we need to make sure the oven is at the temperature specified in the recipe even before the cake or cookie batter goes inside the oven. This is called as pre-heating. So let’s see how to pre-heat an OTG. Pre-heating normally takes 10-15 minutes in OTGs. Whenever you bake anything you need to make sure the oven is pre-heated and ready even before the cake or cookie batter is ready.
It is better to keep the preheated oven waiting for the batter rather than the other way round. Because once the cake or cookie batter is ready it needs to go into the oven immediately. But please follow recipe instructions always. To preheat the OTG, we need to first keep the rack inside the oven.
I am placing it at the second level here. If possible in your oven, please follow instructions for the position of the rack recommended in the recipe. I will be placing my oven thermometer here. And this needs to be in the position and the level you will be placing the cake tin or your cookie tray. And once the oven thermometer is placed inside the oven, we close the door.
Make sure it is closed fully. We do not want the heat to escape from the oven. And then we set the function, I will be setting it to bake (the bottom element on). The temperature to about 180C which is approximately around here in my oven. Once you set the function and the temperature knob, you need to turn on the timer, this is very important or your oven will not start preheating.
So we will set it to, say, about 30 minutes. As you use the oven you will get an idea about how long your oven will take to pre heat, depending on that, you can start preparing the batter. Avoid opening the door repeatedly in between as the heat will escape and your oven will take longer to preheat. The first recipe you could safely try could be a granola, you can watch the video here. If your oven has an indicator light it will keep going on and off, just like our iron box.
Once the oven is preheated and the batter is ready, we will quickly open the door, make sure the temperature is right on the oven thermometer. Quickly take it out, place the cake or cookie batter inside the oven. Now depending on your recipe, we will set the timer again, say for 30 minutes. Do check your cake or cookies 5 minutes earlier than stated in the recipe as the time in each oven may vary.
After 25 minutes we open the door and check if the cake is done. This is an imaginary cake of course. Keep the oven on, keep the door closed.
Check if the cake is done, in case it needs to cook some more, just put it back into the oven and set the timer for 5 more minutes. At the end of the baking time, you will hear the bell. Once the cake is done, take it out immediately; do not leave it inside the oven. Cookie recipes often instruct you to rotate trays half way in between. Say your baking time for the cookies is about 16 minutes.
It means you would need to open the oven at around 8 minutes, that is the halfway mark, you remove this tray, turn it around and then put it back in. This is to ensure that your cookies bake evenly. Your oven may sometimes have hot spots, more about that in another video.
All ovens tend to lose their calibration over time, so it is a good idea to have it calibrated now and then. One way Rose Beranbaum suggests to check if your oven is heating properly is to bake her All Occasion Downy Cake. And if your oven is heating properly, it will bake in the time specified in the recipe. Each oven works differently, though it is the same brand and model. So it will take you some time to learn how your oven works and what works best for you.
This video is just to give you an idea, please stick to what works best for you in your oven. I hope you found this video useful, please share it, do leave your comments for me.