Baking in a fan assisted oven - better than normal oven?

(10 Posts)
MmeLindt Sat 12-Feb-11 11:03:46

I have a fan assisted oven and a normal oven.

Which is better for baking? Until now I have used the normal oven but was wondering if the fan assisted would be better.

NancyDrewHadaClue Sat 12-Feb-11 11:59:32

Fan assisted is better - the fan circulates the heat so the temp should be constant throughout the oven as opposed to a conventional oven where you can end up with cool spots.

Just remember to adjust the heat accordingly (usually 20c cooler is appropriate)

nannyl Sat 12-Feb-11 13:21:42

Fan assisted

although i bake the best cakes ever in MILs 4 door aga

taffetasplat Sat 12-Feb-11 16:02:37

I have to disagree. I did a lot of research into this as I bake a lot and paid a fair bit more for a double oven without fan. By baking I mean cakes. Fan ovens are well known for drying out cakes.

Carrotsandcelery Sat 12-Feb-11 16:05:06

I had trouble with my new oven and a lot of people advised me to turn the fan off. I haven't figured out how to do this and have got used to the oven but it did make me wonder if a traditional oven was better to bake in.

muggglewump Sat 12-Feb-11 16:06:48

I have heard that fan assisted are better, but I've never had one and even if I do say so myself, my baking is brilliant.

ethelina Sat 12-Feb-11 16:11:50

Of my 2 ovens, the conventional one cooks cakes best, and the fan oven does anything crispy better. (biscuits, chips, potatoes etc).

Meat roasts better in the fan oven, but stews better in the conventional oven.

Seems to me if you want fast and hot use the fan, slow and cooler use the conventional one.

MmeLindt Sat 12-Feb-11 17:11:54

Thanks all.

Tried out the fan assisted. It was bloody fast - almost burnt cake cause I did not think I would have to take it out so early.

Surface of cake cracked a bit. Not sure if that was the oven's fault.

Carrotsandcelery Sat 12-Feb-11 18:15:36

I feel my fan cooks it too fast on the outside and it doesn't get cooked in the middle. I think I lowered the cooking temperature very very slightly and hung around keeping an eye on things until I got the hang of the right temperature and cooking time.
Some people recommend placing a large baking sheet in the bottom of the oven to distribute the heat evenly too.
I hope you enjoy your cake!

r1xlx Fri 18-Mar-16 21:05:59

This oven business comes down to where the heat gets into the cake?
A fan will blow hot air over the top more than a conventional will put heat into the side and base.
The fan dries the top and perhaps prevent rising except by doming as the dome acts like a balloon as the moisture in the cake turns to steam and bicarb gas?
To try understand this think of how thick liquids boil over a pan - it is the rising bubbles that lift the food out of the pan?
We want that lift in our cakes too and we want the heat and lift to work from bottom to top of the mix to get a really high soft cake.
The fan doesn't allow this as the fast setting top resists the rise or goes domes.
A gas oven has flames at the bottom sides so radiation will heat the cake tin base and sides before heat reaches the top - so gas will cook sponges better than fan.
A conventional will also heat the cake tin base and sides before it dries the top.

However what has happened to baking over the recent years is lots of people have turned from using butter to using 'low fat spreads' and don't realise that these spread can be 30-40% water - and that water turning to steam is what gives the quick high lift and then the collapse .

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