Tip - how to check for steam in oven
I am contemplating a Rofco, but would prefer to use my home oven if it would produce enough steam and hold consistent heat. Since ovens are filled with hot air, steam is invisible. Today, I went for the fence and preheated the oven with a stone, a full size steam pan filled with lava rocks, and a Rofco Steam Pod. 20 minutes before the bake I poured 1 cup of boiling water into the Rofco pod and 2 cups into the steam pan. I folded a wet bath towel and plugged up the steam vents in the top of the oven door. After the 20 minute pre-steam, the loaf was loaded and the water was refreshed exactly like before. With all of that done I searched every vent on the oven looking for steam and couldn’t find any at all. But I came up with an idea.
I got a mirror and started search around the oven vents. I discovered that steam was coming out of the steam vent that is located within the oven’s control panel. The mirror fogged up instantly. I checked the door vents that was blocked with a wet towel and found no steam leakage.
It was also reassuring to learn that after the steam vessels were removed, there was no steam to be found anywhere coming from the oven. Seeing is believing...
I thought posting this might help others in search of their oven’s steam. It work exceptionally well for me.
Update - I have since made a video about oven steaming and thought it might be of interest to some. I am still in the learning process, so this is a work in progress...
NOTE - to go straight to the section about testing for steam, scroll to the 2:30 mark. In this demonstration the oven is cold so there is no humidity on the mirror.
NOTE - just in case the entirety of this post is not read, here is a nugget. BikeProf brought up the fact that pre-steamng an oven has no benefit. My own testing proves this. When an oven is vented of steam (opening the door) all steam and humidity is lost. The mirror test should validate this.
The Rofco vs. home oven (pretaining to steam) question remains. I know the oven can be steamed for 20 minutes or more (if necessary). But I don’t know if the amount of steam generated is enough to maximize the bake.