Healthy Cooking Techniques Guide
Foods cooked en papillote are encased in parchment paper and baked. The foods are cooked by trapped steam.
Culinary Institute of America
ABOUT ROASTING PANS Roasting pans should have a flat bottom and relatively low sides so that air can circulate. Sheet pans, half-sheet pans, and jelly-roll pans can be used as well, particularly for vegetables, fruits, and individual portions of meat, poultry, or fish. Pans should hold the food comfortably. If the pan is too large, juices will evaporate too quickly and may scorch rather than develop a fond; if the pan is too small, the juices won’t evaporate quickly enough and the food will steam. Vegetables should be in a single layer, as they brown best when they are in contact with the hot pan.
Roasting pans should be of a heavy gauge, and a light or shiny interior is better than a dark finish. Dark metals absorb heat and can hasten the evaporation of juices. Any handles should be riveted on. Handles that fold down make storage convenient, but they are difficult to grab when wearing mitts or holding towels. Either avoid handles entirely or opt for those that stay up all the time. A rack allows air to circulate on all sides of the food. If you are roasting a whole bird or fish or a large cut of meat, consider using vegetables to elevate the food instead of a rack. Thickly sliced onions or carrots accomplish the same, and add flavor to the fond.
Smoke-roasting, or pan-smoking, is a technique for hot-smoking foods without special equipment. Foods are roasted in a bath of smoke and emerge from the pan infused with the flavors of whatever aromatics were chosen—hardwood chips, teas, or herbs are most common. Smoke-roasted foods have an advantage over traditionally smoked foods because they do not contain nitrites, and because they are not brined they are generally lower in sodium.
Foods should be marinated or liberally seasoned before smoke-roasting. Thick foods, such as duck breasts, should be partially smoked and finished in the oven. If they are smoke-roasted until they are cooked to doneness, the smoky taste can overwhelm the food’s natural flavor.