What is dry heat cooking?

Lifestyle Monday 02/April/2018 19:13 PM
By: Times News Service
What is dry heat cooking?

Dry heat cooking methods are those that utilise hot air. There are three main categories of cooking with dry heat: baking, roasting, and grilling.
Baking is done in an oven. It is here that food is enclosed and cooked with dry, hot air. The oven has to be set at an optimum temperature and preheated, for food to be well-cooked. Generally, a guide is provided to bake/cook food as per specified temperature and duration. An important tip for baking is that the oven needs to be preheated before you cook. If this is not done, you face the danger of undercooking your dish. Cakes, bread puddings, frittatas, etc., are all baked.
Roasting is a method, which involves browning the surface of the food. This lends a smoky aroma to the food being cooked, such as nuts, papad, meat, etc.
Grilling is dependent on heat from air. The food is skewered onto metal grills and cooked over charcoal or any other heat source, including gas and electricity. The grills are brushed with oil or fat to prevent food from sticking to them. It enables movement by turning the food on both sides over the heat for it to cook well. This type of cooking is ideal for meat, chicken and fish.
Preferably, meat is marinated with spices and seasoning overnight and then grilled in order to tenderise the same while cooking.
The difference between broiling and grilling is that in grilling, food is exposed to heat from below, while broiling involves heating/cooking of food from above.
Frying is a process of cooking food in hot fat or oil. This method of cooking takes less time as compared to boiling and stewing. Food can be fried in two ways:
Shallow frying — which requires little boil. Here, food is turned over so that both sides may be browned evenly.
Omelettes, fish can be shallow fried.
Deep-frying is another frying method. Here, a lot of oil is heated at high temperatures in a wok. Only a few items are submerged completely in the fat or oil and fried one by one. The high temperatures make this a quick method of cooking.
However, while frying one must remember to take care and avoid accidents by maintaining a safe distance from the hot oil.
The food should be uniform in shape and size for it to cook evenly. Food should be fried to golden brown on both sides.
Do not overcrowd the wok while deep frying as not only does it lower the temperature of the oil, but makes the food soggy too.
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