The Benefits of Roasting Foods

Barbara F. Watson

Roasting is a very easy and basic cooking technique. Many cooks use this method to cook their meats around the holiday season. Food cooked in this way is attractive in appearance, tasty and healthy. Roasting does not use much grease or oil, which reduces the fat and calorie content of the food.
Roasting is similar to baking, but roasting is done at higher temperatures. Roasting uses an oven’s dry heat to cook the food, whether an open flame, oven or other heat source. For roasting, the food is placed on a rack, in a roasting pan or, to ensure even application of heat may be rotated on a spit or rotisserie. During oven roasting, all sides are cooked evenly, because hot air circulates around the meat.

Foods could be roasted by three methods. The first method is by cooking the food in a low temperature oven, 200 degree Fahrenheit to 325 degree Fahrenheit. This temperature is best when cooking with large cuts of meat, turkey and whole chickens. This is known as slow roasting. Secondly, cooking at high temperatures which is beneficial if the cut is small enough to be finished cooking before the juices escape. Thirdly, the combination method uses high heat at either the beginning or the end of the cooking process, with most of the cooking at a low temperature. This method gives the golden brown color, texture and crust also retaining more of the moisture than simply cooking at a high temperature. In either case, the meat is generally removed from heat before it is finished cooking and left to sit for a few minutes, while the inside cooks further from the residual heat. During roasting, meats and vegetables are frequently basted on the surface with butter, lard or oil, to reduce the loss of moisture by evaporation.

Roasting is a good cooking method for large, tender cuts of beef or lamb, poultry, fish, and most vegetables. One can also roast firm foods, like apples, pears and tomatoes.

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