A rotisserie oven is a perfect centerpiece for an outdoor party with friends and family. The very sight of a rotisserie begs your attention, and its presence will help build an appetite. It also gives the party a sense of purpose, something to wait for while everyone is lost in conversation, sipping from their drinks. It’s also very versatile. Anything can be cooked in a rotisserie, from poultry to lamb, even an entire pig. Fruits and vegetables and fish and seafood can also be cooked with a rotisserie, to great fanfare.
Rotisserie cooking is straightforward: the food is pierced through a long stick or rod (also called a spit) and slowly rotated over an open flame or hot charcoal. Through convection, the heat slowly roasts the food, ensuring even cooking throughout. The turning motion also ensures the food bastes itself with its juices, resulting in tender meat. The direct exposure to heat also gives the roast a crispy texture and smoky aftertaste.
So you want to throw a backyard party. You’ve prepared the food you want to cook in your rotisserie oven and sent out the invitations. But before you switch the rotisserie oven on, here are a few safety precautions you need to follow to ensure your party goes off without a hitch.
1. Read the instructions
Cooking over an open fire can be comforting, but it’s impractical and downright dangerous, especially in urban and suburban areas. Thankfully, we have rotisserie ovens that are safer and more practical.
They may not look like your traditional spit over a fire, but they do the same job just as well, if not better. It’s important to read the manual from front to back and understand the rotisserie oven’s usage instructions and safety guidelines. Finally, you need to clean the rotisserie oven after use. If you don’t know how to clean your rotisserie oven, you can hire an expert in oven cleaning.
2. Roast in an open area
Rotisserie ovens create huge amounts of heat, which constitute a hazard to combustible items and wooden structures. Place the rotisserie oven away from wooden structures and under low-hanging tree branches. Similarly, keep them away from shrubs and small plants. The heat could ignite wood, turning your backyard party into a disaster.
3. Keep people away from the oven
As much as we want the rotisserie oven to be the centerpiece of our party, make sure to place the machine away from places where people congregate. Accidents happen all the time, and you want to eliminate the chances of an oven-related mishap from happening. A guest might fall into the oven, or someone might trip over the power cord.
You also need to keep children and pets away from the roasting area. Kids are curious creatures, and the sight of fire can seem like an open invitation to play with flames. On the other hand, pets don’t know any better, and they might try to go for the rotisserie oven when they see the meat.
4. Never use indoors
While newer rotisserie ovens are powered by electricity, you should never use one indoors. Any partially enclosed area like a garage or a gazebo is too dangerous for a rotisserie oven. For starters, the burning charcoal produces noxious fumes that are toxic in high concentrations. Also, the fire could burn down the structure.
5. Place the oven on stable ground
Do not place the rotisserie oven on uneven terrains like stone or sloped areas. You want to ensure that the rotisserie oven works properly, and the spit can only rotate evenly and promptly if it’s placed on level ground. A rotisserie oven on a slope can also fall over, wasting good food and possibly damaging the machine.
6. Avoid lighter fluid
Never use lighter fluid to start a fire. Lighter fluid can cause dangerous flare-ups, endangering everyone and everything in the immediate vicinity. Using lighter fluid can also alter the flavors derived from the smoke. Instead of a woody, smoky flavor, you get the taste of butane instead.
7. Don’t roast in windy conditions
This should be a no-brainer. Do not use a rotisserie oven if it’s windy out. The wind could carry hot embers out of the roasting chamber and ignite nearby combustible material.
8. Only use natural wood
Only use natural firewood for rotisserie roasting. The flavors derived from natural wood are more natural, and the wood burns more cleanly. Do not use chemically treated wood, as the chemical treatment can release toxic fumes if burned.
A final word
These 8 safety tips will help ensure a safer and more productive time with your rotisserie oven. Keep these tips in mind the next time you take your rotisserie out for roasting. Don’t forget to follow proper food safety protocols as well to prevent food poisoning.