[Sca-cooks] hot pan, cold oil ( was Re: ot help with soy...)
johnna at sitka.engin.umich.edu
Sat Jul 21 18:10:15 PDT 2007
This turns up on the web like 2 million times. Try searching under hot
pan cold oil---
http://www.newton.dep.anl.gov/askasci/gen01/gen01181.htm is from Argonne.
It's labeled as false at http://www.pgacon.com/KitchenMyths.htm
It's been a topic of postings on all the culinary lists at time or
another. Some say
it's Yan Can Cook; others invoke Jeff Smith.
Cooks Illustrated says to get foods properly seared--
"Measured into a cold skillet and heated for a few minutes, oil gives
off wisps of smoke that serve as a visual alarm that the skillet is hot
and ready. We tested our theory with beef steaks, chicken (skin-on), and
fish fillets and steaks. In each case, oil that had just begun to smoke
was a good indicator that the skillet was hot enough to produce
well-crusted, good-tasting, and good-looking food without overcooking.
That said, not every kind of oil is suitable for high-heat browning and
searing. Unrefined oils, such as extra-virgin olive oil, should not be
used because their smoke points are low. Refined oils, such as
vegetable, canola, corn, and peanut (be careful of the unrefined peanut
oil carried in some grocery stores) work well because their smoke points
are high (above 400 degrees). A word to the wise: Using just-smoking oil
as a heat indicator is good only for browning and searing in very little
oil, no more than a couple of tablespoons. Smoking oil is simply too hot
for pan-frying and deep-frying."
As to non-stick cookware-- "our results reinforces the recommendation we
made in the magazine about use of nonstick cookware over high heat: The
worst thing you can do is heat an empty pan on the stovetop. Always add
butter or oil first. Butter begins to smoke at about 350 degrees, most
vegetable oils between 400 and 450 degrees--before the pan reaches
temperatures at which the coating begins to break down. And never leave
a pan--empty or not--unattended. Likewise, a pan filled with the
contents of a stir-fry intended to serve four will be much less able to
sustain high temperatures than a pan of the same size used to cook a
single lonely hamburger or chicken cutlet. Use a pan size appropriate to
the amount of food being cooked."
I didn't find it the latest edition of McGee.
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