Friday, December 3, 2010

My Favorite Things: Uncoated Commercial Half Sheet Pan

Inspired by Oprah's "Favorite Things" and the holiday season, I thought I'd do a series of posts with some of my favorite food and cooking-related gift items.  Of course, I can't hand out free items like Oprah can, but hopefully I can inspire a few gifts for the foodies and entertainers in your life.  Enjoy!

One of the most used items in my kitchen is the Uncoated Commercial Sheet Pan (about $10-15) like this one...

...I have at least 5 of them.  :-)  I like them for the following reasons:
  • They're larger and sturdier than any home cookie sheet you can buy.  They rarely warp under high heat and you can fit a full 12 cookies on them.
  • Because I buy only the uncoated kind, cookies don't burn as easily.  Most people think that nonstick surfaces are better but they actually enhance browning (aka burning if you're not careful).
  • Again, because they're uncoated, I can scrub away baked-on gunk with abrasive cleaning pads like Brillo or SOS.  Try that with a coated pan and all you'll succeed in doing is ruining it and sometimes, the stuff is just permanently baked on.
  • They make great trays for prepping ingredients, freezing items loose for later storage in a zip-top bag, drying chocolates, and carrying things around the kitchen.
Cook's Illustrated calls these, "The workhorses of the test kitchen," and I couldn't agree more.  You'll never buy a home kitchen cookie sheet ever again.

Incidentally, Walmart usually has these in stock in the store, so you don't even have to wait for it to ship.

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