Cooking Temperatures??

Joined Dec 22, 2009
As I improve on my cooking skills I am now moving away from recipes and trying more original meals. I have learned when food is done so cooking times is not a problem anymore. 

 My problem is with out that recipe guide I do not have oven temperatures.  What should I consider to determine an oven temp? Is 325 degrees considered a low setting and 425 high?  Most recipes run in that range?  Thanks.
Joined Feb 1, 2007
While there's no universal answer, 350F is the most commonly used time for ovens, particularly for savory dishes.

There are historical reasons for this that pre-date ovens with automatic controls. If you look at old recipes, for instance, you'll often see terms like "slow oven" and "fast oven." They have to do with how long you can comfortably hold your hand in the oven. Most often, 20 seconds was specified, and that translates to about the 350F mark.
Joined Feb 1, 2007
FWIW, here are the relative relationships:

Very slow (very low) oven: 300-325° F.
Slow (low) oven: 325-350° F.
Moderate (medium) oven: 350-375° F.
Fast/quick (high) oven: 375-400° F.
Very fast/very quick (very high) oven: 400-425° F.
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Joined Aug 13, 2006
I have an old cookbook that tells you to time how long it takes a sheet of fine white writing paper to turn brown!
Joined Oct 2, 2010
It is true that 350°F is a very common setting. However, when cooking only meat, their's one golden rule in contempory cooking; the lower the heat, the more tender!

Cooking porkloin at 300°F will produce the tenderest meat ever. Timing is always an issue. How long does it need to be in the oven?

Ikea has this wonderfull inner temperature controller at ... less than 8 euro or something. Simply stick the needle in the meat, lead the cable outside the oven to the device, put it on your countertop and set the inner temperature you wish. The needle measures only at the very tip of it. Works absolutely perfect! You get a soundsignal when the meat reaches the chosen temperature.

Without the cable, the device is just a very usefull timer. I'm sure there are many more similar of these around, but not at that price.

Oh yeah, I feel your question popping up; what inner temperature to look for?

Sorry, these are in Celcius, so you gonna need to check for Fahrenheit;

Nearly all meat inner temperature to look for (beef, lamb, pork), chicken and poultry go for around 70°C;

- rare at 49°C

- medium at 56°C

- Medium well at 65°C

- Well done at 71°C

So, no more excuses for overcooked/undercooked meat!

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