Friday, January 21, 2005

The Wolf is in the kitchen

I waited four years for this, so figured it wouldn't hurt to wait four days before blogging about it: The Wolf gas has arrived.

It cooks just as well--even better--than the vintage O'Keefe & Merritt gas stove we left behind at the original Shady Rest. There are no fancy timing devices or self-cleaning controls. The chef is expected to be, if not in the kitchen, at least on the premises.

I tested the oven immediately Monday evening (after burning it in for a hour) with a batch of brownies. Instead of the gooey interior and burnt exterior the KitchenAid had been serving up for the past three years, we got a pan of evenly done cake-style brownies. Tuesday night I stuffed a chicken with herbs (a recipe from The Naked Chef) and roasted it in a pan full of root vegetables. The result: crispy skin, moist meat, thoroughly roasted veggies--everything we'd been missing.

The Wolf burners are at once very powerful and extremely fine-tuned. I used the chicken leftovers to make a soup, trying out the low and simmer settings, and it was again impressive. If you look at the picture, you'll see traditional burners on the left and what are called S-grates in the center and on the right. Another set of S-grates are on order, so eventually the stovetop will be one even surface, and easy to move pans around on. At some point, I may splurge and order the wok grate.

Because this is the small 30-inch model Wolf, there aren't any fancy French burners, griddles, or warming drawers. But the oven does turn out to have convection, which is recommended for baking bread. To find out more about Wolf stoves, check out their site. It even has a picture of my stove on the homepage! And a QuickTime manicotti demo using their dual fuel model.

So that's the deal. It's a tough, dependable stove, and, yes, I'll be taking dinner reservations soon--after I finish dusting off my cookbooks.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous9:47 AM

    You can always tell a chef has the proper training and mindset - as well as a refined, mannered respect for and approach to cuisine tradition - if they test out a new oven by making brownies. Mmmm. Brownies.