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While many foods maintain a stable texture through the preparation process, there are some entrees and other dishes that may require the use of a cooking band in order to be prepared properly. Here is some information about the cooking tie or cooking band, including some examples of when cooking bands can come in very handy.
Sometimes referred to as cooking elastics, the cooking band can be used in ovens, refrigerators and freezers as part of the food preparation process. The purpose of the cooking band is to prevent the food from falling apart during cooking or cooling.
One of the more common uses of cooking bands has to do with the baking of whole chickens or turkeys. The cooking band can be used to keep the wings and legs close to the main body of the chest cavity rather than spreading during the cooking process. The result is that the extremities of the bird are not overcooked in order to have the main portion of the carcass cooked to perfection.
Adding an element to a roast or pork loin is another way that the cooking band can be used to good advantage. An example of this would be wrapping strips of bacon around a pork loin. Obviously, something is needed to help secure the bacon in place so that bacon drippings will permeate the pork loin while it bakes or broils. A cooking band will easily hold the strips of bacon in place, ensuring that they are crispy and that the flavor of the bacon enhances the pork loin’s appearance and taste.
The cooking band can also be used with vegetables. As an example, it is possible to create a bundle of carrots or asparagus using a cooking band. These can then be placed in a broiling pan and baked in the oven, or even cooked on a grill as a single unit, rather than a number of individual vegetables. This particular application of the cooking band allows the vegetables to cook quickly and more evenly, while maintaining more of the vital nutrients that boiling would remove.
The typical cooking band is made from flexible silicon components that will hold up very well to prolonged periods in the oven. Rather than throwing out the ties after one use, they can be hand washed or placed in the dishwasher along with other kitchen utensils. A good quality set of cooking band can be used for several years before they begin to lose their elasticity and have to be replaced. Several sizes of the cooking ties can be found at finer kitchen stores, as well as restaurant supply outlets.
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