Aluminum Foil Vs Parchment Paper – When To Use Them In The Kitchen?

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Written By David Harison

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In the category of cooking packaging, we find those made of aluminum and those that are called “sulfurized”. At first glance, one would be tempted to believe that the two occupy almost similar roles in the kitchen. However, a little more dive into their characteristics reveals that each is used in very different circumstances. Zoom on their performance.

LAPAH Bamboo Smart Wrap dispenser/Drawer Organizer Set (3 boxes) with Cutter. Compatible with 12” wide rolls. One for Aluminum foil, one for Plastic wrap, and one for Parchment paper

$35.99
Amazon.com
as of 9 January 2023 20h29

Reynolds Wrap Aluminum Foil, 200 Square Feet

$14.49
$11.99
Amazon.com
as of 9 January 2023 20h29

Parchment-Lined Foil 30cm X 15m Laminated Parchment Food Packing Backed Paper Aluminum Foil Baking Paper 30x15

$36.00
Amazon.com
as of 9 January 2023 20h29

100 PCS Aluminum Foil Air Fryer Liners, Non-stick Air Fryer Disposable Paper Liner, Oil-proof Water-proof Air Fryer Sheets, Food Grade Aluminum Foil for Baking, Frying, Grilling, Roasting Microwave

$13.99
Amazon.com
as of 9 January 2023 20h29

Oil Slick Wrap Foil Backed Parchment Paper 12”x600” Alternative to Martha Wrap or Reynolds Pan Lining

$29.00
Amazon.com
as of 9 January 2023 20h29

Oasis Supply, Pre-Cut Insulated Foil Sandwich Wrap Sheets - Grease-Resistant, For Hot Food Items,100 Count, 10 3/4" x 14"

$14.95
Amazon.com
as of 9 January 2023 20h29

Reynolds Kitchens Unbleached Parchment Paper Roll, 45 Square Feet

$5.79
$3.99
Amazon.com
as of 9 January 2023 20h29

If You Care Parchment Baking Paper 70 Sq Ft Roll, Unbleached, Chlorine Free, Greaseproof, Silicone Coated, Standard Size, Fits 13 Inch Pans

$10.23
$5.49
Amazon.com
as of 9 January 2023 20h29

Reynolds Wrap Heavy Duty Aluminum Foil, 130 Square Feet

$11.99
Amazon.com
as of 9 January 2023 20h29

The differences between aluminum foil and parchment paper

We immediately recognize aluminum foil with its two sides: one glossy and the other matte. It is a sheet resulting from the transformation of bauxite, a sedimentary rock, essentially made of aluminum. It can be used in cooking as well as in the preservation of food and leftovers.

In the first case, the product adapts to all types of use such as barbecues and even oven passages. Its nature ensures optimal resistance to intense heat variations. In the second case, it can also protect your preparations after hours or even days so that they remain consumable at all times.

In the case of parchment paper, it results from the immersion of a sheet in sulphuric acid. The process increases the material’s resistance to moisture and thermal shock.

The advantages of aluminum foil

In the culinary sector, this type of packaging is one of the most preferred, both for domestic and professional uses. It remains solicited for its ability to remain marble in the face of thermal variations. This sheet is not afraid of temperatures below 0°C or above 200°C. There is no chance that the paper will burn or catch fire during cooking.

It is then found in the preparation of various recipes such as baked ham, or a vegetable flan. Used for cooking methods in papillotes or barbecues, the product protects your food from direct contact with the blazes and thus guarantees them a uniform cooking. It then prevents the drying of your dish so that it retains the nutrients essential for consumption.

It is noted that aluminum is included in the category of the best performing metals in terms of heat conduction. As a result, it rises rapidly in temperature while ensuring a homogeneous distribution of the latter on the recipe in question.

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Aluminum foil also has a manageable texture. Here, it can easily be made to take any form. In this way, you will have no trouble wrapping your gratins, your roasts, your meats of all kinds in the oven as in the refrigerator. In the freezer, desserts also need it to take shape.

Opaque, this type of paper blocks access to light, air or moisture. This is convenient in the preservation of some dishes that decompose quickly at room temperature.

The advantages of using parchment paper

Unlike aluminum foil, the parchment foil is less resistant to high temperatures. This does not prevent connoisseurs in culinary arts from soliciting him in the field of pastry. Usually, it is found in the form of rolls that we cut to have the right size for our needs. It has a more or less transparent appearance and tends towards white.

Its main asset lies in its impermeability. Indeed, it does not let water or oil through. This version also does not wrinkle easily and when you start cooking in papillotes, it requires the use of support to maintain its configuration. It is also not recommended to send this paper to the microwave. Its metallic texture remains likely to produce sparks and possibly a malfunction of the device.

In general, it is used to prevent food from sticking to the dish, making it easier to demould it at the end of the process. It is stored in the mold, at the bottom and on the sides to limit the overflow of the dough when it comes to pastry.

What are the dangers of these packagings

The researchers do not advocate excessive use of aluminum foil. According to them, this element would leave metal residues in food, especially when it is cooked at very high temperatures. This phenomenon is due to the absorption of these particles by food under the effect of intense heat.

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In a more in-depth study, specialists even demonstrate the presence of these harmful effects in the body and especially in bone tissue. Serious consequences can ensue. According to hypotheses, this process is one of the causes of Alzheimer’s disease, various kinds of cancers and in other cases, the appearance of infertility in some individuals. In the culinary world, its use on acidic foods is avoided because they quickly assimilate these tiny parts of metals.

Parchment paper does not have these disadvantages on its side. However, its only limitation lies in the fact that it is quite difficult to handle. It tears quite easily and therefore requires you to do it gently when using it.

Which baking papers for which recipes?

The aluminum foil remains useful in the good realization of certain preparations. By discarding acidic foods, it can be of practical help in cooking any meat, poultry or fish. You will avoid that it basks a little too much, or even browns. Its immutability in the face of heat will also allow you to send your dishes to traditional ovens and perfect your chickens or fish in papillote.

Parchment paper is used as a support for pastry and bakery recipes. Thanks to its waterproofness, you can use it as a support for your pasta. Specialists in cake, biscuits, pies and other pastries will confirm this. It’s up to you to get your hands on the best parchment paperamong the products offered by manufacturers in the trade.

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