What is a convection oven???
Convection is a setting on many ovens. It propels a fan that circulates the heat more thoroughly throughout the oven, as opposed to the heat just coming from the top or bottom. In short, this means if you have several trays of food on different oven racks, you can more evenly cook them all.
A convection oven only has this setting. It is used mostly as a cookie baking oven..for lots of sheets of cookies at the same time.
When to use the convection setting?
1. You have two or three trays of cauliflower or cookies, for example, and want them to cook them evenly. Otherwise one tray could burn while the other is barely cooked.
2. You need to speed up the cooking time. Convection tends to make the oven hotter. When I am in cooking class and I see we won’t have time to finish roasting veggies or baking a casserole before the end of class, then I change the oven to convection setting to speed up the process.
When not to use it?
I don’t recommend using the convection setting for a whole roasted chicken or anything that could dry out. It’s too aggressive as a heat source for the white meat. Same goes for any roast. You want to be gentle with roasts so they stay tender.