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Measuring temp inside oven - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community



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You will notice a new forum at the top of the main page called, "Ask Me Anything". This forum will be used for live one hour "Ask Me Anything" (AMA) sessions hosted by people who are knowledgeable in different areas pertaining to wood fired ovens. How it works:
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We hope you enjoy this new feature! Please let us know if there is a topic that you'd like to have as an AMA and we'll look for a host!

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Measuring temp inside oven

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  • Measuring temp inside oven


    Greetings. I am curious to know how everyone measures the air inside the oven. My oven did not come with a thermometer in the door and i have been hesitant to cook anything that requires longer cook times etc. i do have the laser thermometer and measuring the cooking surface. Is that temp indicative of the air temp?

  • #2
    Re: Measuring temp inside oven

    Why not just buy a thermometer? for $19.95 you can order a TRU-TEMP that goes up to 1,000 and have it in 2 days and can be cooking like a pro(maybe), worry free.Bimetal Thermometers - Pressure Gauges - Transmitters | Tel-Tru Manufacturing Company


    • #3
      Re: Measuring temp inside oven

      It shouldn't be that different when you measure close to the same area. How much have you cooked in your oven? Air temp is what it is, cook in it and you will see where it is appropriate. Pizza is different than anything else. BTW I use a similar temp gauge as the one above to measure "air temp". It's as close as you will get to air temp. There are other heating components like radiation involved as well.

      Air temp is some what of a mis-nomer, these are hot burning gases that are not the same as "air". Air is a part of it sure, but a lot of other stuff as well and at 500F.
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      • #4
        Re: Measuring temp inside oven

        Air temp is not particularly important because its mass and heat capacity are immaterial compared to the mass and heat capacity of the refractory. The air will come to the appropriate temp (between the hearth and dome) quickly once the door is closed. Get an infrared thermometer and focus on the hearth and dome temps for baking and other cooking. The only time I can imagine air temp thermometers having any value is when cooking with a fire and the door open and only then if the fire were rather puny. With any significant fire air temp is meaningless.

        For bread baking the oven needs to be significantly hotter than your indoor oven (loading has a signficant influence on the desired temp for putting bread in the oven). For roasts and typical oven roasting you are overstressing. The WFO is a pretty forgiving method of cooking. I generally prefer Dutch ovens for the oven can dry out/create too much crust IMO on open foods. But just as people do pot roasts at temps from 150 to 400, you there is a broad range of usefulness. Just do it. You may need to pay more attention the first few times but it will work.

        NOTE: While I cook appetizers with flames in the oven and things that cook fast, I don't think that is what you are implying. I gather you mean "door closed" and "no fire". And that is what my comments are really aimed at. Just try it. Experience is the best teacher!


        • #5
          Re: Measuring temp inside oven

          If there is no active fire burning in the oven then the air temp will essentially be equal to the surface temp of the brick. If there is an active fire burning inside the oven, then the air is most certainly hotter than the surface temp of the heat-soaked brick and is dependent on how hot your fire is burning and even what type of wood you are burning.


          • #6
            Re: Measuring temp inside oven

            Most oven owners end up not relying too much on temp measuring equipment. Once you have done lots of cooking in it. if the food burns you have the oven too hot or you've left it in too long. if it's not cooked then leave it in for longer. I find my stopwatch is a pretty good guide. The old fist held in the oven is also a good guide and the Italians got by with this for thousands of years. Semolina on the oven floor is also a good one.
            Kindled with zeal and fired with passion.


            • #7
              Re: Measuring temp inside oven

              Got it. I agree with the air temp being close to the floor and dome temp. I have cooked more in the oven, but i don't think the amount of times is "much". But, the dome/floor temps are consistent with whatever temp the recipe calls for and the food cooks appropriately as well, so I am pleased with those developments. Thank you everyone for your inputs.