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Wrapping is an essential part of storing, and in some cases cooking, foods in order to maintain freshness, flavour and texture. Foods such as meat or fish should be loosely wrapped to allow the air to circulate. Some of the wide variety of wrapping materials available are as follows:

This is probably the most useful of all wrappings. Foil may be used for storing, cooking and freezing food. For more information, see entries under ALUMINIUM .

A clean damp cloth may be used to wrap foods, such as dough, in order to keep them moist and fresh. A buttered and floured cloth may be used to wrap steamed puddings, such as suet or Christmas pudding.

These are useful for wrapping sandwiches to keep them moist, or greasy foods to prevent the grease from seeping through.

Polythene is another versatile wrapping material. It is moistureproof and grease-proof and it comes in various strengths.

Heavy-duty polythene is used to wrap food for freezing, since it will withstand very low temperatures and prevent the food from freezer burn. This polythene is not resistant to heat and therefore cannot be used to wrap food for cooking.

These are made of a special heat-resistant polythene and are used to roast meat or poultry. They prevent the loss of cooking juices and also keep the oven free from fat splashes. For further information see the entry under ROASTING BAGS.This is a thin, transparent wrapping which is suitable for covering containers or wrapping fresh foods for storing in the refrigerator. It is not suitable for use in a home freezer or for cooking food as it cannot take extremes of temperature. Certain foods are sometimes enveloped, during cooking, in other foods – for example, meat is often wrapped in cab-bage or vine leaves. These wrappings not only keep in the freshness of the food, they also impart some of their own flavour to the food they are enclosing. Pastry is often used to wrap meat or sweet fillings during cooking. For more information about pastry wrappings see the entry under PASTRY.

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