One mother sharing her knowledge with others.

Baking When the Temperatures Soar

The past couple of days, our area has gotten a bit of a reprieve from the excessive heat that the Southern States have been experiencing.  But the temperatures are due to head back into the 90s later this week though hopefully not the high 90s we had been enduring.

Usually when the summer heat hits, I take a break from baking and settle for buying bread and the occasional baked goods, but with a loaf of good quality whole grain bread starting at $3/loaf, this summer I’ve decided to continue baking all our bread.

But we wouldn’t see much savings if instead of paying for expensive bread we paid extra on our power bill for air conditioning a house heated up even further by having the oven turned on.

My solution is to use the roaster oven (<-affiliate links) that is usually reserved for cooking the holiday turkey or ham or when cooking down large batches of sauce prior to canning.   I simply plug it in outside on the front porch.

Roaster Oven plugged in outside

I place a rack in the bottom to lift the loaf pans and prevent the bottom of the loaves from baking too fast.

Three loaves ready to bake

Ours is an 18 quart oven so I can fit between two and three loaves in at one time depending on the size of loaf pan I’m using.

My recipe for mult-grain bread makes five 1.4 lb loaves baked in 8” X 4” pans.  So I do one batch with 3 as pictured above.

And one batch with 2.

Two loaves of bread

It does take between 5 and 10 minutes longer for each batch to bake in the roaster oven as compared to our regular oven so I’ve had to experiment a bit to find the best baking time.

Ready to come out of the oven

The oven does a wonderful job of producing nicely browned, freshly baked loaves at a fraction of the cost of store bought.

Oh and as a bonus, I can also fit one of my twelve cup cupcake pans in the oven, as well.

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7 Comments

  • Robin (rsIslandCrafts)
    July 17, 2011 9:20 am

    What a great idea! We live in SW Florida and I try to avoid using the oven as much as possible and when I do I try to make more than one thing. I bought a roaster pan last year and have tried a few different things but never baked goods. I want to make some bread this week so I think I will give the roaster a try. It works better than my oven anyways.

  • Sandi
    July 17, 2011 9:55 am

    Wow! I’d never thought of using our roaster this way. I’m in Wisconsin so you’d expect we’d have cooler weather, but we’re in for a week of 90 – 95 degree temps, with humidity that puts the heat index at 105 -110. I’m going to be spending a lot of time in the basement. Fortunately, that’s my sewing room.

  • Sandra :)
    July 17, 2011 4:17 pm

    That’s a great idea! It’s pretty hot here too, although I doubt it’s as hot as your end of town, lol! After I read your post I decided to bake bread too, so I made a loaf of artisan bread (first attempt – not bad!), then since the oven was already on, I baked crumb bars for dessert for tonight, and a pineapple upside down cake for DS1’s lunches next week 😀 The air conditioner chugged along the whole time so I didn’t heat up the house … much 😉

  • Katherine
    July 18, 2011 3:58 pm

    Super smart idea! I don’t have an electric roaster, but I know what I’d do if I did (I’ve been baking pita bread at this time of year as it takes only 5minutes to bake compared to regular loaves).

  • Natasha
    July 20, 2011 12:29 pm

    I think I will be buying one of those roasters this year when they are cheap and bountiful around the holidays. What a great idea to do in the summer! I suppose having a broken stove right now really promotes the idea of buying one!

  • Donna Baker
    July 24, 2011 9:37 am

    oh my goodness – how genius! I never would have thought to use this!! I totally have one and will do this when inspired to bake bread!! thanks for sharing!!

  • Hilary
    December 12, 2011 11:24 am

    When making breads or muffins etc, do you put water in the roasting pan?
    Thank you for your time,
    Hilary

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