Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Parchment Love

Buying hundreds or thousands of sheets of pre-cut parchment from KA or some other source is not in the budget right now, so I'm stuck with what I can find locally for a few dollars at a time.

At Whole Foods (fondly known as "Whole Paycheck" in our family) I found a roll of parchment I like better than the supermarket brand (Reynolds) AND it's more economical.

It's called "If You Care" Silicone Parchment Baking Paper.

What I like:

It's unbleached.

It's rated to 450 degrees F and doesn't get as "crispy" as the Reynolds brand (which is rated to only 420 degrees). This means 1) i can reuse the sheets a few times, and 2) it's not being noticeably aerosolized so less chance I'm breathing in microparticles of the paper.

It's not as wide as the Reynolds, so there is less wasted paper when I only want a small square to go under a boule or oval shaped loaf. While there are fewer square feet of paper in this package than the Reynolds, there is more length and less width. I'll get more useable parchment than the wider roll. The box claims you will get 50 to 70 sheets. Not bad for around $3.50 a roll.

It can be recycled.

Works great!

What I don't like:

The cardboard box is flimsy and lacks a cutter. The box is already falling apart and it's hard to tear sheets off.

The box states that silicone used in this paper is non-toxic (still not sure about BREATHING it) but Quillon, used in some other parchment papers, contains the heavy metal chromium which is somewhat toxic when incinerated (baked at too high temps?). I was thinking of splurging on a box of precut Quillon sheets and I'm glad I didn't do that.

Even though we jokingly call the store "Whole Paycheck", I actually find some frugal bargains for bread baking there. They have flours, grains, seeds, and nuts in bulk so that I can buy just what I need and it's quite fresh. Their store brand flour is priced competitively with national supermarket brands.

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