Nesco Jet Stream Oven Review
Sep 02, 2010 by lizardmom | Filed in | 5 Comments
As you may have read from my review of the NuWave oven , the NuWave oven turned out to be a disappointment as we were comparing it to our previous Jet Stream oven. We had purchased a number of Jet Stream ovens over the years, and when our last unit died we had decided to try out the NuWave oven. Once we realized the NuWave oven didn’t perform as well as the Jet Stream, we went went ahead and purchased another Jet Stream oven.
By now, this was our fourth or fifth Jet Stream oven. We have owned one since American Harvest had their infomercials on television. For various reasons, all the units had died. The first ones that fell apart were due to the poor design of the rear support or the lid wound up cracking. On a subsequent model, a 4000T, the heating element burned out. Despite some of the problems, we just HAD to have a new one. Nesco now carries these ovens, although they still bare the American Harvest name. The currently available model is still the 4000TP.
We purchased one online through Walmart with a pick up at the store. The unit worked fine initially but then the electronics went out. The unit was dead so we returned it to the store. To get a replacement, the shipping from Walmart.com would take 3-4 weeks and since we didn’t want to wait, we purchased a unit from another website, which arrived in about a week and a half.
This new unit was a bit noisy at first but it has since settled down and become quieter. We could have replaced the unit again, but we decided to keep it since we didn’t want to be without it while we waited for a replacement.
Out of the box the unit comes with a lid, base, pan liner, power head, with rear bracket (which connects power head to bane base), two cooking racks, instruction booklet and recipe cards. The unit is easy to assemble by attaching the power head to the lid and hooking the bracket part of the power head to the base handle. The non-stick pan liner fits into the base. The racks can be used together or you can use just the one which is used either ‘face up’ or “face down” depending on what you are going to cook and the space required. The power head has two arrow buttons for up/down temperature selection and a button to toggle between the low and high fan settings. There is a red digital display that shows the cook time.
The Jet stream oven uses what’s called “cyclonic cooking”. The unit has a high speed fan that blows hot air around the food. It is basically a table top convection oven but with greater fan speed. The claim made by the manufacturer is that food will cook faster than a regular oven and brown food better as well. I have found these claims to be true. The Jet Stream oven is great at cooking convenience foods. The food comes out of the oven nice and crisp and it browns the food perfectly. The lack of browning was one of the main reasons we did not like the NuWave oven. Cooking in the Jet Stream oven generally takes about a third less time than cooking in a conventional oven. However, this does depend on how much food is in the oven and the moisture content of the food.
The recipe cards and instruction booklet that came packaged with the unit provide ideas for what to cook, while also providing cooking times, fan speed settings, and suggested rack positions of common foods. After a while, you learn to estimate your cooking times but I still refer to the book occasionally.
The base unit is limited by the size of the oven. However, you can purchase expander rings to increase the size for cooking chickens, turkeys and roasts. You can also cook in multiple levels with the expander ring. It is perfect for cooking for parties. You can stack the racks and sandwich the food between the racks. Sometimes you have to do this to keep the food from becoming airborne.
Chicken is my favorite food to cook in the NuWave oven. The chicken always comes out with perfectly crispy skin and extremely juicy.
The biggest complaint about the ovens is a quality control issue. The initial ones literally fell apart. Then one had a burned out heating element, and the other had the electronics die. Not the best track record. I wrote to Nesco to tell them they had a quality control issue and I referred to the current noisy model and other other units that up and died and their reply was I could replace it under the warranty. While this was good information, it didn’t really address the quality control issue.
Would I buy one again? You better believe it. In spite of quality control issues, the end product justifies the purchase. I can just taste that chicken now….
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