More Americans are cooking at home than ever before. As National Public Radio pronounced on April 7: ”… family dinners — and breakfasts and lunches — are resurgent.”
As a brush-up on practical kitchen skills, Eating Well offered March 25 “5 Things
You Should Never Put in Your Oven”:
1. Plastics: While they might be a common-sense no-no where heat is concerned, some home cooks confuse plastic kitchen products with those made of silicone, which are generally heat resistant; and while Pyrex casserole dishes, for example, are made of oven-safe glass, their lids are not, just as some skillets have oven-safe handles while others are made of non-heat-resistant plastics.
2. Wax paper: It is intended for food storage and is not the same as parchment paper, which is heat resistant and can be used to line a baking sheet to make cookies. Eating Well informed wax paper “is literally paper sandwiched between two thin layers of wax, and it’s not heat-resistant, so the wax will melt at high temperatures, leaving the paper exposed.”
3. Glass: Only thermal-shock and oven-safe withstands high heat; still, home cooks should avoid taking a hot oven-safe dish and exposing it to cold water as it could shatter or explode.
4. Foods that will overflow dishes: Use tinfoil, a cookie sheet or some sort of oven-safe catchall when cooking something that is certain to bubble or spew out of its container (i.e. pie, lasagna, some meats); drippings on the bottom of an oven are not only difficult to clean, they could result in fire.
5. Moist or wet towels, oven mitts and potholders: ”… The heat can transfer to the water in the oven mitt and cause scalding burns,” warned Eating Well; any type of cloth must be completely dry before it is used to remove something hot.
6. And Taste of Home reminds never to put food or bakeware directly on an oven’s heating element.