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which is it

 
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cabbage head
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 01, 2012 2:12 am    Post subject: which is it Reply with quote

when u cook a chicken in a granite covered roaster with no water, would the proper name for this be baked chicken or steamed chicken or both?
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Michael Chu



Joined: 10 May 2005
Posts: 1631
Location: Austin, TX (USA)

PostPosted: Sat Dec 01, 2012 2:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sounds like it is roasting.

Baking is usually not used for meats except in cases of small cuts or where the meat has been processed or prepared to make it drastically different from the original cut (for example, a stuffed chicken breast or a meatloaf or meatballs).

Steaming is when you cook food elevated over boiling water which releases steam (invisible water vapor) which cooks the food.

When something is covered and its own juices have evaporated but cannot escape and that water vapor contributes to the cooking process, the final food may resemble food which is cooked by steaming, but we would not refer to the cooking method nor the final product as steamed or steaming (we might use that language to describe the texture or taste of the final product).

Cooking a large intact piece of meat in the oven is called roasting. The term derives from the original meaning of roasting which predates ovens when people would cook large intact meat over a fire.
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Michael Chu



Joined: 10 May 2005
Posts: 1631
Location: Austin, TX (USA)

PostPosted: Sat Dec 01, 2012 2:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

By the way, what's a granite covered roaster? It sounds like a giant rock monstrosity... but is it just an enamel coated steel pan with lid?
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cabbage head
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 01, 2012 3:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

yes it is a roaster my grandma had...speckled and has a lid. Some where i read said for chicken in a covered roaster they called it easy steam roasted chicken.... i believe it was the hillbilly house wife, web site.... because it cooks in its own juices, u say not to call it steamed? And what about epliote? pouch cooking what would that be called ...veg or whatever cooks in there own juices?
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cabbage head
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 01, 2012 3:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

oh, would a baked potato wrapped in foil be called steamed potato,i hear this at times, but from what you said this should be called baked only
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cabbage head
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 01, 2012 3:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

so u are saying when people say steam or its steaming when food cooks in their own juices...you dont use that phrase unless your referring to the texture of the food etc. would this also apply to a baked potato wrapped in foil ? bec. i hear that its steamed, a lot. And what about say brats u cook in a frying pan also known to me as the sausage u get at fairs...with onions green pepper.Ihave been told to cook them using a frying pan and some water and a lid and have been said to me this is steaming them?
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Michael Chu



Joined: 10 May 2005
Posts: 1631
Location: Austin, TX (USA)

PostPosted: Sat Dec 01, 2012 7:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There's no governing body that polices how people use language related to the cooking of food. Some of the worst offenders are restaurants when they attempt to make their food and preparation descriptions sound as appetizing as possible. I normally wouldn't have any problem with describing a potato covered in foil as steamed or fish in a parchment paper pouch as steamed, however, since I write a cooking website and author recipes, I am keenly aware that some cooking terms cannot be loosely applied without introducing confusion. Particularly "steaming" which requires the use of a boiling water source to provide continuous steam. Even though, the juices of an ingredient may be evaporated into steam and that steam is used to cook the ingredient, this is not the cooking technique of steaming. So that means, a potato in foil, a fish in parchment, or pretty much anything microwaved (the heating action actually comes from the water molecules heating up inside the ingredient so some amount of heating actually comes from internal "steaming").

A potato wrapped in foil is still a baked potato. It's just another way to bake it. Fish in a parchment pouch would also be baked fish - the cooking method is different enough than laying a whole seasoned fish in an oven for it to be referred to as "baking" instead of "roasting".

Brats in a pan with oil and water would be pan fried. Brats in a pan with water without oil would be boiled. (In steaming, the food being cooked cannot touch the boiling water.)
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