Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

nena_loves_bento
Bento-ing from: Turin › Italy
Joined: 20 Feb 2009
User offline. Last seen 5 years 21 weeks ago.

Hi everybody!

I saw on a bento book a method for cooking small amounts of food at the same time:
they put an aluminium foil below an ingredient in the 18 cm non-stick pan, so for example they are able to cook chicken in a half of the pan (on a piece of aluminium foil), and some vegetables in the other half, on the pan or on another piece of aluminium foil.
Then if you want to cook some other food you just have to use a new aluminium foil and the pan is already clean!

I thought I found the japanese secret for cooking small amounts of many dishes at once,
but I'm thinking about.. is it safe? is it healthy? :-/

Is it normal in Japan to do like this method?
Do you have some secret to cook multiple things at the same time without mixing?

Please share your tips for saving time and pans! :)

Thank you,

kisses! :*

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eilismaura
Joined: 6 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 4 years 51 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

It is an interesting idea!

I know we have done aluminum foil packet cooking in Boy Scouts when camping - and it can be done in the oven too.
So the idea to cook using foil is healthy that way - as in it is a safe item to use.

Eilish

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maki
admin
Bento-ing from: somewhere › France
Joined: 24 Jan 2007
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Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

Personally, I have a concern about using aluminum foil in frying pans on a couple of accounts. Firstly, you have to use a very sturdy aluminum foil (or cup) to withstand the high heat from the pan. Secondly, I do not like the idea of cooking anything acidic in aluminum. Thirdly, all of my frying pans have non-stick surfaces, and I wonder how using aluminum foil on them at high heat frequently would affect that surface. Lastly, food cooked directly in foil can stick to it like crazy unless you grease it a lot. So, I prefer to just use two small frying pans and keep things separate.

Keep in mind that some Japanese kitchens only have 2-burner stoves (a tiny apartment may even only have one portable burner) so people have to improvise. At the moment I have a slowly dying range with only 3 working burners out of 4, but that's enough for bento prep. (I supplement that with a toaster oven and an electric kettle to boil water quickly.) Anyway that's just my personal opinion!

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Alice
Bento-ing from: Leicester › UK
Joined: 9 Jun 2008
User offline. Last seen 3 years 14 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

Seems like a waste of good aluminium foil too me. Think of the amount you'd get through, it's not like you can use it time after time. Also, the foil may scratch the pan. Acidity and reactivity aren't a problem since the aluminum oxide that coats the foil isn't very reactive at all (Horray for GCSE chemistry), it will scratch your pans though. We baked stuff in foil in guides and none of us where poisoned, so it may be worth a try if you really want too.

anon.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

You weren’t poisoned but maybe you'll develop cancer later.

bronwyncarlisle
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Bento-ing from: Dunedin › New Zealand
Joined: 12 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 1 year 19 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

I'm not hugely bothered by cooking in aluminium - all our pots were aluminium when I was a kid, until Mum could manage to afford the copper-bottomed stainless ones. However, you just try cooking some apples or rhubarb in an old, non-anodised aluminium pot. You'll be amazed at how clean and shiny it becomes. Acid certainly does react with aluminium oxide. The aluminium oxide forms a thin coating on the aluminium that stops further oxidisation in air and water (and makes welding it difficult), but it still reacts with acids and bases.

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arlia11
Bento-ing from: Framingham › Massachusetts › USA
Joined: 5 Apr 2009
User offline. Last seen 3 years 46 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

Hmm, my friend gave me a carbon steel frying pan. I wonder if it would be Ok to use aluminum foil then?

What about biscuit rings or other cookie cutters to use to separate things? Like when you are poaching eggs? My mom used to put them at the bottom of a pan to keep eggs in a certain shape.

clarissa
Bento-ing from: Berlin › Germany
Joined: 6 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 3 years 41 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

They are not made from aluminium, are they? So I think that they are save

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bronwyncarlisle
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Bento-ing from: Dunedin › New Zealand
Joined: 12 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 1 year 19 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

My egg poaching rings (which I use for English muffins and crumpets mind you, never eggs) are aluminium. I think most of them are. My preserving pan is aluminium too, as is my steamed pudding bowl.

But I'd be more worried about the aluminium in my deodorant than in a cooking pan, and I don't worry about that. People have been cooking in aluminium for years. There's also very little evidence to link aluminium with cancer or Alzheimer's.

clarissa
Bento-ing from: Berlin › Germany
Joined: 6 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 3 years 41 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

That is funny. I've never seen this things made out if aluminium. Only made of steel.....

bronwyncarlisle
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Bento-ing from: Dunedin › New Zealand
Joined: 12 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 1 year 19 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

Steel rusts, I doubt egg poaching rings are made of steel. Maybe stainless steel? Even then, they'd be quite expensive and heavy.

enui
Bento-ing from: › Italy
Joined: 21 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 2 years 13 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

As long as you don't cook, or leave in them for a long time strongly acidic food in them, I don't see any problem. If you use them in a non-stick pan then you'll have to be careful not to scratch it, but in another pan you'd have to be very rough to cause damage I think :)

enui
Bento-ing from: › Italy
Joined: 21 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 2 years 13 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

Yes, and maybe a meteorite will fall from the sky and hit her on the head, but this does not mean that there is a relationship between the two facts.

enui
Bento-ing from: › Italy
Joined: 21 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 2 years 13 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

If a magnet sticks to it, then it's most likely steel. If it does not, then it's most likely aluminium, since aluminium is not magnetic.

clarissa
Bento-ing from: Berlin › Germany
Joined: 6 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 3 years 41 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

a magnet sticks. And heavy? No thats not my expression. They are just big pastrypunchs. And there the better ones do not rust. Yes they are not cheap, but they will last long.

bronwyncarlisle
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Bento-ing from: Dunedin › New Zealand
Joined: 12 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 1 year 19 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

A misunderstanding. You were talking about the cookie cutters, I was talking about egg poaching rings. Egg poaching rings are used in water, and are nearly always aluminium. Cookie cutters aren't. My cookie cutters are some sort of steel too. I even bought some of them from Germany!

Certainly no one should be worried about cookie cutters, even if they were aluminium.

arlia11
Bento-ing from: Framingham › Massachusetts › USA
Joined: 5 Apr 2009
User offline. Last seen 3 years 46 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

Probably less wasteful to cook an egg in the cookie cutter or whatever you are cooking because then you contain the entire food within the shape.

If not, you are cutting into a cooked piece and wasting some ends and edges and such.

Not to get off track or anything...

bronwyncarlisle
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Bento-ing from: Dunedin › New Zealand
Joined: 12 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 1 year 19 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

Yes, that's why you can buy them - but if you use really fresh eggs they all stick together anyway so you don't need to use anything. Trying to poach elderly eggs without a ring is messy. The whites spread all over the pan and you end up wasting a heap.

Alice
Bento-ing from: Leicester › UK
Joined: 9 Jun 2008
User offline. Last seen 3 years 14 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan
anon. wrote:

You weren’t poisoned but maybe you'll develop cancer later.

Of course I'm going to develop cancer. I have no significant familly history of heart disease, therefore I will probably die of cancer.

Tinfoil has nothing to do with the matter.

Alice
Bento-ing from: Leicester › UK
Joined: 9 Jun 2008
User offline. Last seen 3 years 14 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

The aluminium oxide is very thin, so it's shiny anyway. The apples etc, get rid of other stuff on the surface though.

bronwyncarlisle
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Bento-ing from: Dunedin › New Zealand
Joined: 12 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 1 year 19 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

See http://www.chemguide.co.uk/inorganic/period3/oxidesh2o.html

The unreactive alpha-Al2O3 they talk about is corundum, which is a very hard stone, and if coloured is either ruby or sapphire.

Also see http://www.evapo-rust.co.nz/Aluminium%20Oxide%20Remover.htm for an acidic chemical specifically for dissolving large amounts of aluminium oxide.

Alice
Bento-ing from: Leicester › UK
Joined: 9 Jun 2008
User offline. Last seen 3 years 14 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

Can I also point out that if alluminium wasn't safe we'd all be in trouble, it being about the third most common element in the earths crust. We've evolved to be fine with reletivley high amounts of it. Although it's not great for you to absorb too many aluminium salts.

bronwyncarlisle
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Bento-ing from: Dunedin › New Zealand
Joined: 12 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 1 year 19 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

Exactly! And it always amuses me to see the "natural crystal" deodorants you can buy - which are just big hunks of aluminium salts. See below (from a FAQ page of a manufacturer). They always have on them something like "contains no aluminium chlorohydrate", which leads the unwary to believe there is no aluminium of any sort.

"Crystal deodorants are made from a natural mineral salt called generally termed alum , which does contain a natural aluminium salt. Alum is not the same as aluminium, and our products do not contain compounds such as aluminium chlorohydrate or aluminium zirconium compounds found in most anti-perspirants. These amazing mineral salts work effectively to prevent body odour by forming an invisible topical surface film which kills and prevents odour causing bacteria."

Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

I'm a bit late to the party here, but the conversation is very interesting. Right or wrong in my assumption about the alum foil safety I'd shy away from cooking with aluminum cups in a pan. I cook with aluminum foil sometimes on the outdoor grill (under fish for instance)... but try to keep that at a minimum. I've slowly started phasing out my aluminum based pans for stainless steel pans and of those I only use the non-stick pans for certain items, otherwise I'm cooking on polished stainless with a thin film of oil whenever possible.

My favorite pans though... the ones I will fabricate nearly any excuse to use are my iron skillets. Consistent heat, generally non-stick once seasoned/well used and in regard to your post here it's the only pan-type I've seen with partitions. I would like to find an iron skillet with maybe 4 partitions instead of 8, but for bento this still might be useful. You might check out this Lodge "cornbread wedge" skillet. https://secure.lodgemfg.com/storefront/product1_new.asp?menu=prologic&id...

This, although not ideal for round burners might also work?: https://secure.lodgemfg.com/storefront/product1_new.asp?menu=tableware&i...

btw, I love your site!

Alice
Bento-ing from: Leicester › UK
Joined: 9 Jun 2008
User offline. Last seen 3 years 14 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

The main reason to not use aluminium foil too much for cooking is environmental concerns. It takes huge amounts of power to extract aluminium from its ore.

Miss_Artemis
Bento-ing from: Victorville › California › USA
Joined: 20 Apr 2009
User offline. Last seen 4 years 15 weeks ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

I think if you question it, don't do it. xD
I usually use multiple frying pans and pots. :]

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anon. 2
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

I am a toxicologist, and reading through this little banter about whether or not cooking in aluminum is potentially toxic or not has been an enjoyable experience in sociology. As it turns out, the scientific Jury is still out on the subject of cooking in aluminum and potential chronic effects. We do know that aluminum can exacerbate lysosome mediated peroxidative damage of brain cell lipids. GI uptake of aluminum can be increased by the presence of various substances, and, of course, biochemical variability among humans (age, sex, gender, blood chemistry status) can cause considerable variability in the fate of aluminum once it has entered the human body. Truly, the chemical complexity of cooking foods in aluminum foil is beyond the reach of persons who have taken basic chemistry courses somewhere, and the biochemical complexity of what happens to those chemicals within the human organism far exceeds the knowledge base of even the most revered inorganic chemist waving her/his nobel prize wildly. Perhaps the precautionary principle is in order here, until further data are accumulated.

T-Marie
Bento-ing from: Austin › Texas › USA
Joined: 1 Nov 2010
User offline. Last seen 47 weeks 6 days ago.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

I don't use foil very often for much at all. Never really thought about that much before either. I may have to pick some up and try things now.
But it seems like one of these http://en.bentoandco.com/products/triple-pan would solve the multiple foods/few burners/less dishes conundrum. And I just noticed how old most of this thread is. >.<
Oh well .02$ anyway. =^.^=

anon.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

Just to add a bit to the discussion -

I live/work in Japan. The "fry pan foil" is like aluminum foil but...different. I don't know how, but putting them side by side, they are different. I just used this foil for the first time awhile back. A woman in the store who was cooking samples told me I needed it for the fish so I got it. Loved the clean up if nothing else!

Nothing stuck to it as it's a somewhat "silkier" texture (compared to regular aluminum foil). I was going to buy some before I leave so I wanted to search online to see what people were saying (or if it was common elsewhere).

anon.
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

What do you think of parchment paper? I just went out and bought more foil because I found it so convenient for roasting vegetables on sheet pans. However, given that I have some metal allergies, perhaps I should be more cautious with foil. However, I understand parchment paper has silicone and perhaps that is an issue. My sheet pans are non-stick (which I don't like putting food on at higher oven temps) and I find the food doesn't burn as much on the foil as it does on the pan directly. I'd appreciate any thoughts you might have.

Jimmy Choo
Re: Cooking in aluminium foil in the pan

Stone Line pans (I bought mine in November and also use metal spatula, etc.) absolutely brilliant coating really is absolutely scratch and not a whit worse than a non-stick coating. But just more durable. In the square pan I would be careful because square pans only cast (because of the heavy and thickness of the material) somewhat flat bleiben.War recently on Silit demonstration since they have declared. Is because the pans in the cold state are slightly curved and flat when heated by the expansion. At the square shape is not possible due evenly, so often warping pans. Have the square Stoneline pan and is not completely flat. In induction mode is not as serious, but when you realize conventional oven's very strong.

Stoneline really only has a small disadvantage: With strong-smelling foods you notice the next time cooking during the heating nor the taste of your last meal. Transfers do not stop at the food. But apparently lies down somewhere. On electric stove slightly longer cooking time than konvektionelles utensils, bottom "dimpled" is (for induction to the better). Cooking identical to itself. Particularly positive is also light weight compared to cast iron and also as Silit Silargan etc. Dream dish for all fans of the non-stick coating curse always short shelf life.

Please visit our website http://www.stoneline.info/

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