The (Surprising) Rise of the Sheet Pan
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The (Surprising) Rise of the Sheet Pan

Martha Stewart was placing two apple crisps on a pan, which said to hold the juice that came out during cooking, “If you saw how many sheets I had, you would be quite frightened.” I have A lot of Sheet pans. “

And they have long been credited: Ms. Stewart was first introduced to commercial sheet pans – thick, unheated aluminum sheets with 1-inch-high rims and rolled edges – in the 1970s Fred Bridges By. He had a catering business in Connecticut, and he owned Bridge company, A professional kitchenware store on 52nd Street in Manhattan.

“That’s where I really started learning about high-quality, restaurant-quality, long-lived appliances,” Ms. Stewart said. “I bought my best stuff from Mr. Bridge.”

In his first TV show, two decades later, he used sheet panes on sets, showing them to home audiences repeatedly – though not intentionally. Like most professional cooks in America, and bakers in particular, Ms. Stewart relied on those pans even though she did not display them.

Until recently, no one did, because the sheet pan has neither the old-car shine of copper utensils nor the charm of carbon-steel knives. Sheet pans are essential for professional people, but with far more work than form, they do not shout for attention. The best ones cost less than $ 20.

And yet this useful piece of equipment has become a star. This can be attributed to a portion of sheet-pan recipes from food publications, cookbooks, and bloggers, a new style of weekend cooking that provides complete food on the pan. A cousin of one-pot food, sheet-pan supporters combine vegetables, protein and starch in a piece of cookware, but offer a larger canvas to create a range of shapes and colors. Actual cooking requires nothing more than passive waiting.

Less shocking is its social media popularity: the non-reflective aluminum surface serves as an underlying backdrop for the burnt portion of the caramelized carrot. Roasted chicken, A cheese-mess of anything. As of this writing, 42,000 posts have been tagged #sheetpandinner On Instagram.

Their usefulness is a revelation for home cooks – and even for some restaurant chefs. When Kavi Temporarily closed due to epidemic in New York City, Eunjo parkThe executive chef first created a sheet-pan meal in the kitchen of his apartment. “The last thing I want to do at home is use all these pans and utensils,” she said.

It may feel that sheet-pan food was seen as an override food media in the last few months, but their rise in the home kitchen was really slow. pound cake From Soufflé. According to Google Trends, the word is “pan pan” Kept climbing Interests reached the highest peaks in the weeks of Thanksgiving and Christmas in 2020, since 2009.

But popularity is fleeting. Sheet pans are not. Available in four sizes, they are the basis of many American restaurants, bakeries and food-service kitchens.

The full-sheet pan is designed to fit commercial ovens; Half sheet pans have a length of 17- by -12 inches; And so on down to the eighths. While home cooks toss around the word “sheet pan”, the chef shortened their name by size: “Bring me half a sheet of almonds. Snooze on a quarter sheet.” (Most sheets for home cooks – Pan recipes are developed for half a sheet.)

Half the sheets are surprisingly versatile, partly because they are the right size. The cooks grab them to move ingredients to walk-in, clean up dirty equipment and stove to wash dishes. They use them as trays to organize mise en space. They throw bread crumbs, roasted bones or dried tomatoes in the oven in half a sheet.

Pastry chefs fill them with cake batter and pastries designed for those dimensions. “Baklava goes a long way in those half sheets,” he said Reem AssilChef and own Ream of californiaWith locations in Oakland and San Francisco.

In the 1990s, Paan was seen more outside of the professional kitchen, in the backdrop of food-magazine photos and in TV shows run by chefs. They were also newly visible in the open kitchens of restaurants and bakeries. Food lovers who wanted to cook like professionals saw them and trekked to restaurant supply shops or specialty cookware shops to buy them.

Sarah Carey has worked for the Martha Stewart brand for 21 years and is currently editorial director of food at Martha Stewart Living.

Cookware Company Nordic ware Started selling paan to house cooks in 2001. “It was not a success out of the box,” said Jennifer Dalquist, executive vice president of sales and marketing. “It took years to get on its feet because it is not a glamorous looking product.”

Ms. Dalquist declined to share the exact numbers, but said that for more than a decade, the company has experienced double-digit growth in sheet-pan sales year-over-year. His pan, which is universally Praised in cookware review, Comes with a lifetime guarantee. “As long as you drive it with a car, it’s going to end you forever,” she said.

When seeking a half-sheet pan, pure aluminum is best, as it conducts heat more evenly than aluminized steel. Avoid any type of coatings: Pans with nonstick finish cannot withstand particularly high oven heat, get scorched and need to be replaced every 3 to 5 years. For stronger options, refer to the thicker pan according to the metal gauge (12- to 18-gauge works well); The lower the number, the thicker the aluminum. Once you use a true half-sheet pan, you cannot go back to the shimmer.

Because sheet pan rolled steel rims are important, which prevent flat rims from buckling and rolling in hot ovens such as pressurized rims. Those steel rims are wrapped on aluminum ledges and crimped to attach. (Ms. Dalquist suggests shaking a sheet pan to test its quality. If you hear the tingling, it comes from a steel rim, flattering against the encroachment, which is made of lighter-gauge aluminum Also indicates the possibility of a messy crimp, which may be dental or taut over time.)

It is tempting to buy sheet pans – at least two feel necessary and a dozen are a dream – because they serve so many purposes, and also because they nest so neatly for storage. Buy decent people, and they will live for decades. “To me Athema grocery store has those stupid aluminum pans,” Ms. Stewart said. “It is such a waste. In three years, you need to replace them. “

Some people complain that it is difficult to wash the sheet pan by hand. (Using a dishwasher causes them discoloration, but does not affect performance.) Ms. Stewart said that unless dirty pans pile up inside each other, washing is simple. If they are immediately washed in hot water water, everything “comes right out”, she said, and they look just like they did before.

“These sheets start from my catering days, from the early ’70s – are still completely correct,” she said.

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