Leg of lamb oven

I have asked a number of questions to the support team but still feel a little unsure.
I have just placed 2 x 2kg of boneless lamb in the anova oven. At 57 degrees Celsius. From what I have read I should cook it for anything from 2-8 hours?
How do I know when to stop?
I put the probe in. After an hour it’s still at 40. I set a probe check for 57. I was hoping to achieve medium.
How long should it take for the internal temp to get to 57?
How long would you then cook it for?


Hi Jess, you don’t disclose the answers you received from the Anova Support people and it appears you should rightfully feel unsure.

Is 57ᴼC both your cooking temperature and your target temperature? That’s about the midpoint between Medium-Rare and Medium doneness. By most standards Medium is 60ᴼC.

I don’t own an Anova oven, but most conventional ovens cannot cook at a lower temperature than about 75ᴼC, and that’s for a very good reason. It isn’t safe.

Precisely speaking, if your oven’s cooking temperature is set at 57ᴼC the meat’s internal temperature will never get to 57ᴼC. Over a sufficiently long period of time the internal temperature will approach that temperature, but never quite gets there. Meanwhile your cooking becomes a food safety matter as the meat’s internal temperature remains in the Food Danger Zone far too long allowing the growth of harmful pathogens. You don’t want that as hospitals are busy enough these days.

Jess, please don’t put a question mark at the end of a simple declarative sentence as i can’t know if you are asking a question or making a statement. If it is a question, i suggest you redirect your reading elsewhere as the information you have is not helpful.

You know when to stop cooking when the meat’s internal temperature attains your target temperature. That’s the purpose of using the probe thermometer. You know that.

If if this cook was doing 2 small pieces of lamb like yours equalling about half a whole boned leg of lamb the oven temperature would be preheated to 135ᴼC. First i’d whack up some onion, rosemary, lemon zest, garlic, a small pinch of red pepper flakes, and a few anchovy fillets. Simmer the mixture in olive oil til the onion is tender and allow the mixture to cool a bit. Season it with salt and pepper.

If you have the time and inclination, untie the meat or remove it from its netting and rub half the seasoning mixture over the inside of the meat. Then retie the roasts and slather the remaining mixture on the meat.

Place the meat on a wire rack set into a rimmed sheet pan. Insert the temperature probe and set the probe’s temperature’s alarm to 54ᴼC so you will end up with your target of 57ᴼC with carry-over residual heat.

Pop the meat in your oven and roast til done as you enjoy the delicious aromas wafting around your home. Remove the meat from the oven when the temperature probe’s setting has been attained. It should take about 2 1/2 hours, a little less if you use a 50% steam setting.

Normally, close to service time, i would pop a roast into a 260ᴼC oven for 10 to 12 minutes to crisp and brown the surface. However, your roasts are a little too small to do that without overcooking them.
And don’t forget to remove the twine before slicing.

Stay safe and enjoy.

Question for you @chatnoir: When I cook steaks to medium rare (145F or 60C) I set the oven to about 150F and a probe alarm to about 135F so I have room to sear them on the barbecue when they reach temperature and still have medium to medium-rare steaks. From what you said, it appears that might be unsafe, so my question, my food scientist friend, is am I endangering my family doing what I’m doing?

As an aside, the APO will very effectively control temperatures from about 15F/8C higher than ambient temperature in the room. I regularly proof (is that the right word?) bread in my over at 95F/100% humidity before baking it.


Hey Joe, how’s everything?

Your steak cooking practice is effective and safe.

Food safety is always time and temperature dependant. You know about the Food Danger Zone being between 40ᴼF and 140ᴼF. Well there also a time element implied there too. When cooking you don’t want an overwhelming amount of bacteria growth when within the FDZ.

Consider that at the midpoint of 70ᴼF, about room temperature, pathogens double about every twenty minutes. And that growth is geometric, not linear, so it soon becomes dangerously exponential over time. And that rate of growth increases until it reaches the maximum growth rate just before the thermal death point of 126.1ᴼF.

Jess is cooking boneless roasts which are considerably different than steaks. Boneless items receive a lot more invasive handling than steak. Thus i am concerned about the greater hazard of interior contamination in them as compared to your steak. I am also concerned with the length of time the core temperature of fabricated items like those roasts remains in the FDG. Your steaks cook relatively quickly compared to roasts.

This cat has a personal maximum allowable cumulative time for hazardous foods to be in the FDZ of 4 hours. In all my kitchens those times were always measured and documented. Those among us with a background in Microbiology will assert that it’s actually within 6 hours at 130ᴼF to prevent dangerous levels of harmful pathogens being produced, but i prefered having some extra margin of safety for my guests.

Steaks and whole muscle roasts are about as safe as can be as contamination is only on the exterior. Ground and chopped meats are the most worrisome so those you want to cook thoroughly and quickly.

Not to make this epistle any more complicated than already done, consider that cooks learn to think in terms of safe or dangerous as well as tough or tender when planning a cook.

Bread proofing, - or fermenting that is another name for it, is most effective just as you are doing.

Keep well.

I read your comments slowly.
Yes I set both oven and probe to 57.
It the probe reached 57 after 3.5 hours but when I removed the meat at 6 hours it was not nearly medium and still mostly raw on the inside. That was a little confusing.
I had thought that the probe was the key indicator and that if I maintained an internal temp of 57 for anything from 4-8 hours I should be OK.
That was based on a few websites that I read.
I think I will return to doing just simple recipes on the app and take it from there.

Hey Jess, you certainly are having some serious APO challenges.

Maybe you should not be using your Anova oven until you have a better understanding of its functioning. And you need to get your information from better websites as it appears you are being misinformed.

Other than temperature you haven’t mentioned the oven settings you used. The cause of your problem might be your oven’s cooking mode setting compounded by the inferior recipe you are following. Were you using the Sous Vide setting? Judging from your reported results you are not cooking, you’re incubating as i explained in P. 4 of my response to you. And that’s dangerous and becoming worse with time.

Please go back and read to understand P. 4 again. Your oven is not supplying sufficient heat to cook your meat.

Did you verify the meat’s internal temperature with a thermometer you know is accurate? If in doubt, verify. Don’t rely on visual information.

Improper placement of the probe can also result in poor results. You want to be certain its tip is at the centre of the thickest piece of the larger roast. That can be difficult sometimes with boneless meat products because there can be air pockets inside that would result in wrong temperatures if the probe’s tip was in one.

You are wise to use simple recipes until you have consistently successful outcomes.

Keep well.

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I feel your pain: When I got my oven, I went feet first into the wild and wooly – way far off my normal beaten path. I had mixed results. But the things I was used to – steaks, roasts, bread, and I got into baking a bit more – they all came out spectacular. Sure, I had a few “meh” results, but by and large, every time I did, I was able to figure out why (sometimes with the help of the folks here, sometimes just having that “OH OF COURSE!” moment after the fact) and more or less correct it for the next time.

Our kids are out of the house, and having a smaller oven more suitable to cooking for two is one of the ways I convinced my wife to give the APO a go. After four months with it, my wife and I both love this oven, even if we have had to accept that once in a while, we’re going to badly screw it up and order pizza.

But we’re not ordering pizza much anymore.


The summer is here, and now I’m looking forward to seeing how the oven integrates with my barbecue and my smoker, so the adventure continues. The only thing I’m letting be my guardrails at this point is the whole danger-zone-poisoning-my-guests concerns, and I am always learning more about that to keep us all safe. But I accept that some nights will be amazing, while others will be good nights to have the local Chinese place on speed dial.

One thing about the app: Certain of the chefs on the app like their food – especially the fish – a lot more fleshy than someone pedestrian like me likes. You might want to mix some of your recipes into the learning curve, and you might be surprised at how well that can work, and how much more encouraging that is vs. food with which you’re not all that familiar cooked to someone else’s taste.

So, why not pick a favorite meal of you own, throw up it here for comment, and let’s see if we can’t get you going.

Have a great day!


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