Knowing we were buying a property with an Aga, we suddenly paid attention to all ours friends that had one and asked for tips on how they go about cooking on an Aga. There were two clear points.
One – it’s really easy
Two – you will never want to go back once you get used to it
Well months in to it now, we can honestly say both points are true. The secret however to it really, is to go on an Aga demonstration day. Not only do they show you all the tricks and tips that you probably wouldn’t pick up for ages if you did it on your own, but you get to eat your way through the day with the best oven cooked food.
So as June was Country Cooking Month, we are sharing our cooking on an Aga tips, so you will feel comfortable using it when you come to stay in our self catering accommodation and cook for your family and friends in our very own country kitchen. (Don’t worry though as we also have a conventional oven and gas hob.)
The basic rule to Aga cooking is 80 / 20. Hence 80% of the cooking should be done in the ovens of the Aga because cooking on the top plates loses more heat and results in the Aga then being less efficient.
The left plate is for bringing items up to the boil and for quick fast cooking. The right plate is the simmering plate, although again, this should be used only for short periods as simmering can be done in the bottom, simmering oven.
Think of the two ovens in terms of the heat rises principal. So the very top of the top oven is the hottest and acts like a grill and the bottom of the bottom oven is like a warming oven.
You can fry bacon in the oven, boil root vegetables, make risotto without having to keep stirring it, bake cakes with the help of a cold shelf, slow roast pork and even cook porridge overnight. We still have a lot of things to try cooking, so if you do ever fancy signing up for evening dinner with us, as opposed to your stay being fully self catering, then we are happy to oblige.