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See, there comes a time in every human being’s life when they are transformed into a full-fledged adult. It often happens without warning: one day you close a bar down at sunrise, the next you exchange tips with your boyfriend about the ideal ways to keep your dishwasher clean.
My personal bill came when I was unable to stop praising silicone baking mats. I can not recommend them enough, and thus I have come to accept that I am no longer at my best age.
Mats are available in single and two-packs as well as several sizes and colors.
When you start using silicone baking mats, you will wonder how you have ever cooked without them.
These mats are available in lots of different brands, colors, shapes and sizes, but MMmat Silicone baking mats in orange are exactly the product I have been using for the last two years. I keep them folded in the middle with my cutting boards and will guess I use them at least five times a week.
So what’s so great about these flimsy little things? I would say that their biggest advantage is that they make disposable tinfoil and parchment paper almost useless. Before these mats, I would tear a new piece of aluminum foil off almost every time I put something in the oven. From pizza leftovers to raw salmon to cookie dough to vegetables drizzled in olive oil, each food would get a fresh sheet of foil to separate it from the baking sheet.
While I’m sure baking sheets are meant to be cleaned regularly, this is not something that happens with reliable safety in my household. Our sheets are filled with firewood stains and sometimes sticky with an oily residue, even after cleaning in the dishwasher. Cooking with the silicone baking mats, which – praise of the forces – dishwasher safe, makes me sure that the food I make will not be contaminated by what is left on the sheet. I can also be sure that the mats prevent the baking tray itself from getting dirty.
The silicone sheets can withstand oven temperatures up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit and are also safe in the freezer. They are really nonstick and incredibly easy to wipe off. I have not tried this move yet, but some reviewers say they use the sheets to line their refrigerators – they would definitely stay in place – to keep everything immaculate.
Buying something new is rarely the best option when it comes to practicing sustainability. But these, I think, are worth buying because they so drastically reduce the need for disposable plate liners.
As I mentioned earlier, I have had mine for two years now and I see them holding on to many more in the future. One way to ensure that they hold is to avoid cutting directly on top of them, as it would be possible for a sharp knife to cut into the silicone and eventually tear a hole.
While throwing away foil is hardly our biggest environmental crime in the kitchen (and in fact, aluminum foil is recyclable in many municipalities, if you do it right), these recyclable sheets are a boon in our book when it comes to making small changes for to cut down on waste.