Here at NESCO, we not only manufacture quality products, we also use them in our own homes.
To help you benefit from some of the things we’ve learned over the years, our staff has compiled some helpful hints in two areas, cooking and product care. We hope that these tips help you grow to love your products as much as we love ours.
- In addition to roasting and baking, you can always use the NESCO® Roaster Oven as a slow cooker by simply setting the temperature control in the 200°F range and stirring often.
- For additional browning of meat or poultry, mix 1/4 cup melted margarine with 1 tsp. browning sauce and brush on before roasting. Occasionally, older cuts of meats dry out as they roast. Water, broth, or carbonated soda (ginger ale) may be added. Check meat during roasting. Your NESCO may be used as a portable oven by placing casserole dishes, glass, stainless steel or aluminum baking pans on the rack in the preheated cookwell.
- Do not use cooking bags in roasters.
- Despite a long standing rumor, there is absolutely no need to put water in between pans when cooking in a NESCO. The patented NESCO Circle of Heat® provides consistent, even cooking throughout. Water will actually slow down the cooking process, and make it more difficult to clean up.
- Deep frying in your NESCO is not a recommended use. The heat on your NESCO comes from the sides of the unit, our patented “Circle of Heat®”. There is no heat from the bottom, so the oil will never get hot enough to deep fry.
- To prevent buildup on cookwells, do not spray with non-stick sprays. When making a casserole, soups, chili, etc. in the roasters, wipe the cookwell with a light coat of liquid vegetable oil to prevent sticking to the sides. Also, since the heat comes from the sides of the roaster, rather than the bottom, be sure to stir the contents occasionally.
- Be sure to “cure” your roaster before using it for the first time. The only part you that should be cured is the body of the roaster, also called the “heatwell”. Take off the lid and remove the cookwell and all packaging materials. Place in a well-ventilated area, plug in, and heat on it’s highest setting for 30-60 minutes. You may notice a slight smoke or odor, this is normal. It’s the insulation around the heating element heating up for the first time. You shouldn’t smell anything like this after the first time.
- To make great jerky, use the two packets that come with the jerky seasoning mixture. Mix the spice packet and cure packet with ground meat. Use 1 package of each to approximately 2 lb. of meat.
- You may use pineapple, orange, or lemon juice as pretreatment for your fruits. This will help keep them from discoloring as they dry.
- Clean-A-Screens® are mesh screens that work well with small vegetables and sticky fruits. They will keep the small items from falling through the trays, and make sticky items easier to remove by flexing the screen.
- Fruit Roll Sheets are a solid plastic sheet that works well for liquids, fruit rolls, and as a drip catcher on the last tray of your dehydrator for jerky. Fruit Rolls are an easy to make, healthy snack for kids. Fruit Roll Sheets help you turn making Fruit Rolls into a fun family activity!
- Applesauce and gelatin can be added to your fruit rolls to add color and flavor. Try various flavors to see which one is your favorite.
- To rehydrate foods, soak in water for 1-2 hours. Using boiling water will speed up the process.
- When slicing a roast for jerky, it will slice more easily if the roast is semi-frozen.
- Make sure when testing for dryness that your food is at room temperature for accurate results. Food is softer the warmer it is.
- As you clean out your refrigerator or have left-overs, remember that dehydrating can save money and waste. Dehydrate them and use them later!
When marinating with sliced meat, combine the spice packet, cure packet, and 1/4 cup of water and let this marinate in refrigerator overnight.
- You should always use 4 trays for even heat distribution. The trays can be run empty.
- Food must be carefully monitored near the end of the dehydration process to prevent overdrying. Overdried foods lose quality in texture, nutrition, and taste. To test for dryness, remove a piece of food, allow it to cool, and feel with your fingers to determine dryness:
- Fruits should be pliable and leathery with no pockets of moisture. To check if fruit is dry, tear a piece in half and watch for moisture beads along the tear. If there aren’t any, it is sufficiently dry for long term storage
- Fruit rolls should be leathery with no sticky spots
- Jerky should be tough but not brittle
- Dried fish should be tough. If the fish is high in fat, it may appear moist due to the high oil content
- Vegetables should be tough or crisp
- If the food you are drying sticks to the tray, Fruit Roll Sheet, or Clean-A-Screen®, place the tray in the freezer until the food is frozen. Then remove the food.
- Drying Temperatures
- Meat & fish 145° F and above
- Fruits & vegetables 130° to 140° F
- Herbs & flowers 100° to 110° F
- When drying liquids, sauces, or purées use a Fruit Roll Sheet, available from NESCO
- Do not spray vegetable spray directly onto the surface of the trays.
- You always need to use the “cure” packets when making beef jerky, whether it’s ground meat or sliced.
- The tray in the bottom of the FD-60 is a moisture collector. You don’t have to do anything with it other than empty it when moisture accumulates.
- Do not spray vegetable spray directly onto the surface of the trays.
Jerky Seasoning & Kits
- If you wish to add seasonings, herbs, or other flavorings to dehydrated foods, do so after the food is completely rehydrated for best results.
- When using NESCO seasonings for jerky, use 1 package of spice and 1 cure package to 2 pounds of lean ground beef, turkey or other meat. Form into strips or sticks using our Jerky Works® jerky gun and accessories. To use as a marinade for sliced meats, add 1/2 cup of warm water to one package of spice and cure. You can also add Worcestershire, soy, or teriyaki sauce for great flavor. Add a little cayenne pepper to make it spicier!
Jet Stream Ovens/Air Fryers
- Do not preheat when baking
- Use the cooking times in both the charts and recipes as a guide. Variables in food size and thickness, humidity, altitude, and your personal preference for doneness all have bearing on actual cooking time
- Use caution when using cookware (i.e. pizza pans) with lightweight objects. Use the top/hold down rack to add extra weight and eliminate danger of pans levitating and causing damage to fan
- When cooking bacon and eggs, put bacon on bottom rack and cover with top rack upside down and flat and place eggs on the top rack. Cook on LOW speed and use caution when preparing bacon to avoid steam burns when lifting the lid
- When cooking semi-liquids, start on LOW speed until surface is firm enough to prevent movement.
- If a recipe calls for preheating, always preheat at 400° HIGH for 2 minutes
- The top rack is usually used as a hold down rack when cooking small or lightweight foods
- Unless otherwise specified, when two racks are shown, food should be contained or sandwiched between the top and bottom racks
- When baking small items, use a foil-wrapped rack that is pierced with a few holes
- Always place food directly on bottom rack unless otherwise specified
- Use the bottom rack upper position, as a rule, when following your own recipe
- When cooking individual items (i.e. baked potatoes or chicken fillets), arrange around outside of rack. Group lightweight foods together
- Spraying rack with non stick spray will make cleanup even easier (Do not spray the lid)
- When preheating, remove bottom rack. Place food on rack while oven is heating, then replace quickly to prevent heat loss
- If you need to purchase a Jet Stream Oven® Belt, call us at 1-800-288-4545
- If your Jet Stream Oven® needs repairs, you can send it directly to us. You can also call us at 1-800-288-4545
- Check fan blade periodically for flatness by spinning it on a flat surface. Bent or warped blades will cause vibrating and/or unusual noise. Gentle adjusting by pushing down on the blade (while on a hard, flat surface) should correct any problems. If a blade is severely bent and cannot be realigned, call our toll free number for assistance
Electric Pressure Cookers
- To ensure the best cooking performance when pressure cooking, always make sure the recipe calls for at least 1 cup of water or other liquid so enough steam can be generated to create pressure.
- After a period of time the rubber gasket may shrink, harden, or otherwise become distorted under normal use. When this happens or other damage occurs, do not use the appliance. The rubber gasket should be replaced. Contact the Customer Satisfaction Department (800-288-4545) for replacement.
- When using the HIGH or LOW pressure settings, the timer will not start counting ‘down’ until sufficient steam pressure is generated.
- When pressure cooking, if you are not sure how much cooking time is necessary, it is better to ‘under’ cook. Then use the “quick release” method, remove Lid and check for doneness.
- Never fill the removable cooking pot more than half full with food or 4/5 full with liquid.
- Make sure this appliance is plugged into a separate 120 volt electrical outlet. A circuit overload may occur if used with another appliance at the same time.
- Tougher, less expensive cuts of meats are better suited for your digital pressure cooker because the steam pressure helps break down the tough fibers in the meat making them more tender and flavorful.
- Fresh fruit should be cooked under low pressure.
- When pressure cooking beans, add a teaspoon of oil to the water to reduce the amount of foaming.
- Any liquid such as oils, oil-based marinades and dressings should not be used pressure cooking.
- Liquids that contain water can be used when pressure cooking. These include wine, beer, stocks, tomato and other vegetable and fruit juices. Wine must be mixed with an equivalent amount of water because it evaporates quickly during cooking.
- Frozen foods can be cooked if meat is one-inch or less in thickness, do not alter the cooking times, appliance will begin the timer after set internal temperature is reached.
- During the pressure building process, you may notice steam escaping from the pressure regulating valve. Carefully adjust the valve by moving it gently or turning it side to side gently using tongs or similar utensil until it seals properly.
- If steam is escaping around the lid, it means that the rubber gasket may not be sealed.
- Cancel the cooking process, release pressure manually or naturally, remove the lid and check the rubber gasket for damage or incorrectly installed. Re-install after examination and start cooking process.
- Unplug cord from electrical outlet then from appliance. Let the appliance cool before cleaning.
- DO NOT wash any parts of your appliance in a dishwasher. Use warm soapy water, rinse and dry. Always clean after each use or if it has not been used for an extended period of time.
- Wipe base with a clean damp cloth. NEVER submerge the base in water or other liquid. Wipe the inside of base as necessary to remove any food product.
- If the condensation reservoir contains visible moisture, remove by pulling down. Wash in warm soapy water. Rinse and dry. Attach to base by pushing up to lock into place.
- Open the lid, grasp the rubber gasket on either side and pull. Wash gasket in warm soapy water. Rinse and dry thoroughly. Insert the rubber gasket by pushing it down inside the edge of the lid, making sure the ‘v’ groove of the gasket is centered around the wire ring on the lid. NOTE: If the rubber gasket is not positioned properly the appliance will not function normally.
- In order to maintain good performance of your appliance, the bottom of the removable cooking pot should be cleaned after each use. Wipe with a soft damp cloth and dry before using.
- Never use abrasive cleaners or scouring pads to clean any parts of this appliance, as they will make fine scratches in the surface, especially on the polished or non stick coated surfaces.
- Store your appliance with the lid resting upside down on the removable cooking pot. This will protect the valves, knobs and pressure regulator on the top of the lid. If the appliance is stored with the lid sealed, stale odors may form on the inside.
- After the unit has cooled, remove the lid. Note: To remove lid, turn clockwise and lift part way open, then turn counter-clockwise to remove lid from support shaft located to the back of appliance. To attach lid, reverse directions for removing.
- Grasp pressure regulator knob by prying under the knob and lifting to remove.
- Turn the lid upside down and set on a tabletop. Pull out the filter by firmly grasping with a soft cloth lifting upwards. Using a small brush, check and remove any food particles that may be lodged inside the filter, regulator knob stem and floating valve.
- Push filter back into place by locating over the hole and press firmly until it snaps into place.
- Replace the pressure regulator knob by locating over the regulator knob stem and press down until it snaps into place.
- Unplug cord from wall outlet. Allow oil to cool. NOTE: Oil retains its temperature for a long time after use, about 2 hours. Do not attempt to empty the Reservoir until the oil has cooled completely. Do not attempt to move or carry the appliance while it is in use or hot.
- Once oil has cooled, remove the basket from the base. Pour the oil into a container that has a wide mouth and deep enough so that oil does not splash over the sides. Pour quickly and make sure that the fryer is completely empty before turning the base upright so oil does not drip down the exterior wall. NOTE: There is an indent to the back left corner of reservoir to act as a spout for pouring.
- Wipe excess oil with paper towel. Clean oil reservoir by wiping with a damp cloth or sponge and dry thoroughly. NOTE: Be careful not to let liquid drip down exterior wall of the base. If this happens wipe immediately with a dry cloth or paper towel.
- To clean the filter, open filter cover and rinse filter with hot water. Dry thoroughly. NOTE: Filter cannot be removed for cleaning.
- The lid, basket and handle can be removed and washed in the dishwasher or hot soapy water. Rinse and dry thoroughly. To remove lid, open and firmly lift.
- Assemble lid to base by inserting tabs of lid into the slots at the back of the base and push down to lock. The basket and handle can be stored in the reservoir.
- Close lid and store appliance in a dry place.
- Filter oil through several layers of cheesecloth or a large coffee filter into another container. Oil should retain it’s properties for another 8 – 12 uses. NOTE: If oil has been used for cooking seafood or smells spoiled, it should not be used again.ATTENTION!
- DO NOT IMMERSE BASE OR CORD IN WATER OR ANY OTHER LIQUID.
- DO NOT USE STEEL WOOL OR ABRASIVE CLEANERS ON ANY PART OF THE APPLIANCE