What does it mean to broil 4 inches from the heat for x minutes


I was looking at some recipes online and it said 'Broil 4 in. from the heat for 1-2 minutes or until lightly browned.'

Does broiling mean a specific temperature? I have never broiled anything before and I was wondering if there is a standard temperature range for broiling?

Incidentally, this is about making garlic toast, but I would like to know about broiling in general.

Best Answer

I'm going to assume this is an American recipe, as broiling has a slightly different meaning in Australia & the UK.

With broiling, the oven only heats the top element in the oven, and you turn the element or burner up as hot as it can get. It's not a specific temperature, as in most ovens, that would cause it to cycle on & off. (in fact, when broiling, you typically leave the door open specifically so the oven won't heat up so far that it decides to cycle the burner off to cool down).

It's about extreme high heat, from a single side. (top in the US, bottom in the UK and Australia)

You typically need to pay close attention to whatever's under the broiler, as it can go from golden brown to charred very, very quickly.