I have received a free Kitchen Thermometer from Epica to review. And I have decided to put it to the test with a Roast Chicken. And to make the test two-fold, I also stuffed my chicken. It is vital to always ensure that chicken is thoroughly cooked to avoid food poisoning.
As a rule of thumb, chicken should be cooked in a preheated oven at 180ºC/350ºF/gas mark 4 for 45 minutes per kg plus 20 minutes. But if you cook your bird with the stuffing inside, you need to allow extra time for the stuffing and for the fact that it cooks more slowly.
The packaging for the thermometer does not include any mention of safe internal temperatures for cooking different types of meat but I know that it is recommended that chicken reaches a temperature of 75 deg C, measured at the thickest part of the bird between the breast and the thigh. Here is a useful temperature guide for cooking different meats.
However this time to test the thermometer out, I experimented with taking the temperature in different areas of the bird and at times way before it would be ready. And I found for instance that the wing temperature had already reached 75 deg C after only an hour cooking whilst the core temperature was still only 45 deg C. And when the stuffing reached 75 deg C, the core temperature was 60 deg C.
I had a reasonable idea of how long I was expecting my chicken to take to cook, which is useful in order to gauge what time to start cooking all the trimmings for my roast dinner. Also I observe the colour of the meat and juices. And my idea turned out to be pretty much spot on, but it was great to use a thermometer to back up my own judgement.
So we enjoyed a very tasty Roast Chicken dinner with sage and onion stuffing, roast potatoes, shallots, roasted peppers, broccoli, green beans, carrots and gravy. Delicious. Plus lots of chicken left over for other meals and I made chicken broth from the carcass. Watch out for another blog post on that.
The thermometer came with an LR44 battery already installed. The packaging indicated that it has a measuring range from -50 to 200 deg C and that it functions at ambient temperature of between 0 to 50 deg C. I turned it off after each measurement but if you forget, it will automatically turn off after one hour. It also has min and max functionality, so you can take several readings and check for both the minimum and maximum. And it can be switched to Farenheit, for those like my mum who still prefer to use Farenheit.
The thermometer currently retails on Amazon for £21.95 compared to an RRP of £34.95. I thought the probe was a good length for large joints of meat and liked that it came with a cover. A shame that you can’t use it as an oven thermometer though. A nice little kitchen gadget in my opinion but I’m not aware of how much similar products retail for.
As well as meat, I think it will prove very useful when making sweets and jams.
Disclosure. This post is a review of a product I was sent for free. All opinions are my own.