Cooking on board your motorhome is essentially limited to using the gas stove. Few vehicles are equipped with an oven that can bake cakes or simmer small au gratins. The Swedish company Omnia offers an alternative to the traditional oven that you simply use on your gas stove. Text and photos: Alain Vacheron
We wanted to test the product in real conditions, in a van: an apple pie, bread and a potato gratin are the recipes we made!
Light and compact, the Four Omnia is suitable for motorhomes
The Omnia oven consists of three parts: a round stainless steel base that comes into contact with the gas, an aluminum savarin mold with a diameter of 25 centimeters and a bright red lid. The set fits in a bag and weighs no more than 500 grams. The manufacture seems to be of good quality.
After purchasing the Omnia oven, as well as a silicone mold (which fits in the aluminum mold) recommended by the manufacturer, it is time to start cooking. We also chose to integrate a thermometer into the lid to keep a close eye on the cooking temperature.
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A long-known principle, easily adaptable to life in a motorhome
This oven system for a gas stove has been known for a long time. Before the democratization of wood-fired, gas and then electric ovens in every home, many cooks in southern Europe (Spain, Portugal) were familiar with this type of material for preparing their meals. The principle of the Omnia oven is simple. The heat from the stove burner revolves around the mold through the central hole. The flame never comes into contact with the food and ensures even cooking. It’s just a convection cooking system!
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Many possible recipes
There are many recipes for using this very practical and compact oven. It’s possible to cook meat like chicken and even make pizza in the shape of a disk with holes in it – not quite legal for purists, but just as good. However, be careful with the cooking times, which are much shorter than in a traditional household oven. The principle of operation of this oven, which does not contain any source of heat but completely relies on that of the available stove, initially left us rather baffled: it is still better to do a few tests before mastering cooking . For around 80 € (oven + pan + thermometer) this investment will change the way you cook on board your motorhome. This is an essential utensil for those who like to eat well and take the time to cook.
A few precautions for use
The Omnia oven is quite easy to use, but some basic precautions are needed before use. Like any appliance that generates a lot of heat, the Omnia oven must be installed in a stable manner to avoid the risk of tipping over and burns. And if the kitchen unit of your motorhome has a glass cover, be careful not to get too close to the oven to avoid the risk of overheating the glass, which can be weakened.
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3 recipes to adopt
apple pound cake
You will need: 1 glass of flour, 1 glass of oil, 1 glass of icing sugar, 3 eggs (the fourth quarter), 1 packet of baking powder, 1 pinch of salt, 3 Belchard or Chanteclerc apples.
- In a bowl, combine the flour, salt and baking powder, then add the eggs and oil.
- Finally, add the sugar and stir until you get a paste without lumps.
- Butter the silicone mold and pour in the batter.
- Peel the apples, cut them into medium sized pieces, spread them evenly over the dough and press the pieces with a fork.
- Turn the gas to medium heat and set your Omnia oven down with the lid.
- The temperature slowly rises to 150°. Check with the thermometer.
- Baking the cake takes 35-40 minutes. Test for doneness by inserting the tip of a knife into the center of the cake. When the dough is no longer sticky, it is done.
- Avoid opening the lid too often during cooking so as not to lose heat.
Our opinion : Incredible success. It is golden brown and demould perfectly. Cooking is even down to the core. The purchase of a suitable silicone mold seems mandatory to us to facilitate cleaning.
You will need: 5 potatoes with melting flesh (eg Agatha), half a liter of milk, 50 cl of liquid cream, grated Emmentaler, salt, pepper and nutmeg in powder form or for grating.
- Peel the potatoes, wipe them without washing to preserve the starch. Cut them into relatively thin slices (about 5 mm).
- Spread the slices evenly in the silicone mold.
- Pour the milk and crème frache, grated Emmentaler and nutmeg into a salad bowl and season with salt and pepper. Stir everything and pour the contents of the appliance onto the level potatoes. Put grated cheese on the preparation and… let’s cook for 50 min!
- Again, you should not open the oven lid too often.
- After 40 minutes on low heat we discover to our surprise a perfectly baked gratin and also golden brown to perfection. Second success.
Wreath seed bread
For baking bread we tried it several times. But after four attempts, we found the solution. The problem was certainly not baking in the Omnia oven, but making our bread dough. Here’s a recipe that works perfectly…
You will need: 500 g flour for baking bread (mixture of flour and seeds), 2 sachets of baker’s yeast (2 x 10 g), 2 teaspoons salt, 300 cl lukewarm water.
- Mix the flour with the salt in a large bowl. In a bowl, pour the yeast with a little warm water and a little flour. Stir well and let it swell for 10 minutes.
- Stir the yeast into the flour in the large bowl with a wooden spoon and add the lukewarm water little by little until you get a compact dough. Knead the dough with your floured hands for at least 10 minutes so that the dough does not stick to it. It’s sports!
- Make a round piece of dough and let it rest in a bain-marie for 40 minutes with a cloth over it.
- The dough should double in size as it rises.
- Second kneading for 5 minutes and second proofing for 20 minutes at room temperature (minimum 20°).
- Here your bread is kneaded and all you have to do is put it on the fire.
- Make a hole in the center of the dough and place it evenly in the tin. Make several incisions in the top of the bread with a knife.
- Let’s cook for 30 to 40 minutes.
Our opinion : our bread does not look like a very pure baker’s baguette, but the result seems very correct to us. Airy crumb and crispy crust. It is a real pleasure to eat your own bread made in your motorhome. And even after a few days it doesn’t dry out…
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