Cooking Smooth with Silicone Kitchen Utensils

 

flickr photo by Jim MooreIf you’ve read anything else I’ve written, you can pretty much surmise that I’m not a big fan of Teflon. I like that it is nonstick, but I DON’T like that it gives off toxic offgas at high temperatures.

That being said, making an omelet in my Lodge Logic cast iron skillet is pretty near impossible. It is scrambled or nothing. So, assuming everyone is safe with the temperature of their nonstick cookware, you also need to be careful not to scratch the Teflon coating…and THAT is best avoided by using silicone cooking utensils.

silicone kitchen utensils

flickr photo by Jim MoorePretty much any of the utensils in your cooking utensil set can be found in a silicone version. If you checked my basic cooking tool list, I was able to find everything on that list in a silicone version except the serving fork.

There are plenty of benefits to having silicone kitchen tools around:

- Smooth yet Durable: This is the biggest one. Silicone kitchenware is great for your Teflon coated cookware, since it won’t scratch Teflon’s delicate barrier. Silicone is flexible and tough to break, crack or tear. This is a great quality for cool kitchen utensils, but makes it tough for cookware…more on that later.

- Great Insulator: Silicone doesn’t conduct heat very well, which is great for utensils and the silicone pot holders that are out there. If you have a silicone spatula with a stainless steel handle, the heat is less likely to make it through to the handle if the silicone isn’t passing that heat along. Because it doesn’t conduct heat it is also able to withstand high heat. Usually up to 500-600° F (depending on the product specifications).

- Safe: Because of both properties listed above, silicone can be used in the microwave and washed in a dishwasher with no worries or concerns.

flickr photo by Jim MooreWith all of these modern kitchen utensils at your disposal it is pretty easy to get a decent collection going. Another perk with silicone kitchen gadgets and tools is that it is easy for silicone to be manufactured in different colors. Not that that is an “advantage” per se, but if you want a pop of color, or just something beside black plastic utensils, stainless steel utensils, or wood utensils, silicone is a great go to.

silicone cookware

flickr photo by Jim MooreAs I had mentioned earlier, the flexibility of silicone can make using silicone bakeware and cookware a little more difficult. Yes, it is nonstick and will help you cook more evenly, but one common complaint is that the silicone is too flimsy and you’ll just end up putting the silicone bakeware on a metal cookie sheet so it doesn’t flop around.

And using a silicone baking mat to make flat cookies might be even easier than attempting something like muffins in a silicone muffin mold.

unique kitchen utensils

There are a couple cool little silicone kitchen gadgets that I’ve been seeing around.

flickr photo by Jim MooreOne pet peeve of mine is that my pasta strainer takes up a good amount of cabinet space. Anyone with me on that? There are now collapsible pasta strainers on the market that use silicone and its flexibility to fold in on itself for storage. Brilliant!

flickr photo by Jim MooreAnother cool little item I’ve seen (and will soon be getting) is a utensil clip. It is mad out of stainless steel and silicone and clips on the side of your pot or pan so you can rest your utensil over the food to drip instead of where ever else you might put it that you would later need to clean up.

Overall, silicone cooking utensils are a good choice, whether you have delicate Teflon cookware or not.

 

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