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Silpat vs airbake vs flat cookie sheet


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#1 helios3

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 11:58 AM

Hi everyone,

I'm surprised this topic hasn't come up more on the site (I did a search).

Does anyone has experience with using silpat for cookies? I'm thinking of buying either that or an airbake, since right now all my cookies are burnt on the bottom.

The airbake sounds like a good idea, but I do wonder if it works or not.

Also, do you use silpats for other things? Should I line the bottom of my cake pan with a silpat so it slips out really nicely? Or is that just ridiculous?

Thanks,

Helios

#2 rickster

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 12:08 PM

I use SIlpats all the time and like them alot. Much easier to use than parchment. However I do belive that cookies cook slightly differently on them so I'm not sure all recipes will come out perfectly (this was discussed on a macaron thread). For sheet cakes I prefer to use parchment though. I worry that the batter may seep under the Silpat, although I've never tested it.

#3 bripastryguy

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 01:07 PM

I have baked millions of cookies, I have never used silpats for tehm ( i do use them for lots of other things)

It doesnt allow the cookies to spread as much, just not the final products I was looking for.

You can always double pan your cookies. Rotate during cooking. Switch the bottom tray to the top and visa versa
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#4 snowangel

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 01:17 PM

I hate my airbakes. They have become project trays for the kids. I'd rather double up on cookie sheets. Now that I have a convection oven, I don't even have to do that.
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#5 elyse

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 01:29 PM

Wouldn't just turning your oven down or raising the racks do it?

#6 rickster

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 01:31 PM

Not sure what this proves other than I used a bad recipe, but last week I tested out a new chocolate chip cookie recipe baked on Silpats and the balls of dough barely spread at all. Thinking that the problem was possibly that the Silpat inhibited the spreading, I baked the second batch on an Airbake pan with parchment and got exactly the same result.

#7 elyse

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 01:32 PM

I know parchment definitely inhibits spreading.

#8 Wendy DeBord

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 02:26 PM

I think you meant silpats Elyse?

Yes, silpats are not perfect for all cookies in fact don't bother using them unless the recipe calls for them.

Parchment is the perfect liner for easy clean up, it's very rare that it's not the perfect surface.

As far as pans- forget the air ones or any other. The best are also NOT the most expensive. Go to a local restaurant supply house and buy yourself aluminun half pans. They're perfect and last forever.

#9 MsRamsey

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 02:29 PM

Cookies don't seem to brown on Airbake sheets, and I don't like that. I would never use one now.
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how the bill to ban production of foie gras in
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#10 Elizabeth_11

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 02:33 PM

I love silpats, but I also love parchment paper. I have found them both to produce almost exactly the same reults. I HATE airbakes, I never ever use them. I always only use all-clad cookie sheets and Chicago Metallic sheet pans. Those are my favorites :smile:

Edited by Elizabeth_11, 24 June 2003 - 02:35 PM.

-Elizabeth

Mmmmmmm chocolate.


#11 rickster

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 02:40 PM

I don't use my airbake much, but I do prefer it for baking biscotti, since it tends to keep the slices from browning during the second baking.

#12 LEdlund

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 02:41 PM

I love my Silpats. I store them right on my sheets. I use them for most everything. I haven't had the same problem with the cookies not spreading. In fact the last batch of cookies I made spread a little more than desired :angry:

The only thing I use my airbake for is to heat frozen pizza!

My problem with parchment on a cookie sheet is that it burns. It's probably all in my head, but I swear I can taste the burnt parchment in whatever I am baking. Of course I don't have that problem with using it in my cake pans.....

Has anyone noticed that Silpats have really come up in price? When they first came out they were really expensive, then they dropped a lot and I could find them for as low as $15.00 for the larger size. Now I only see the smaller ones and the cheapest I found was $19.95!
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#13 beans

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 02:42 PM

I concur: I HATE airbake.

I find parchment is the most versatile and have often reused the same sheet (wipe it off, flip it over) until it begins to brown. I've had some mixed results with silpats too so I just resigned myself to the "wastefulness" of disposable parchment paper.

I once believed I had to have the All Clad cookie sheet, but then realized it was frivolous for such an expenditure and went with several aluminum commercial restaurant supply pans. They're almost indestructible.

edit: boo boo fixer! :laugh:

Edited by beans, 24 June 2003 - 02:50 PM.


#14 MsRamsey

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 02:47 PM

I find parchment is the most versatile and have often reused the shame sheet


Freudian slip? :laugh: :laugh:
"Save Donald Duck and Fuck Wolfgang Puck."
-- State Senator John Burton, joking about
how the bill to ban production of foie gras in
California was summarized for signing by
Gov. Schwarzenegger.

#15 beans

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 02:49 PM

Oh God. I can't type to save myself today! :laugh: :wacko: :raz: :blink:

#16 plax

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 03:15 PM

I've been using Silpats and parchment interchangeably when baking cookies and haven't really noticed much difference between them. I don't much like that slimy feel of the Silpat-- never quite feel like I've gotten it clean-- but it has certainly held up and cut down on my need for boxes of parchment paper.

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#17 elyse

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 03:49 PM

I think you meant silpats Elyse?

Did I? I thought I meant parchment.

#18 nutcakes

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Posted 25 June 2003 - 12:14 AM

I am surprised by the lack of enthusiasm about silpat. I have heard praises from bakers sung for ages, and finally broke down and bought 2 on sale. So far, I am really happy with the results, and am producing the best and most consistent cookies. I'm mostly making a large (4"diam) molasses crinkle cookie and various biscotti. Also have made a type of sugar cookie that you chill and slice. Random others. The baking seems more even, and of course, nothing sticks to it. Plus you don't grease the pan, and your pan is clean in the end.

I have never seen them made for putting in cake pans. You cannot cut them so it does not work for baking cakes unless you bake in half sheet size.

I have noticed the price dropping, not rising.

#19 jackal10

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Posted 25 June 2003 - 12:26 AM

I've just got some Silpat ("Silform" ) baguette moulds. Magic. No more stuck baguettes
Much easier to handle and store as well

#20 browniebaker

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Posted 25 June 2003 - 05:43 AM

I use Silpats for cookies (for the non-stick properties and for less browning on the bottom) but not for biscuits or scones. As between biscuit rounds on aluminum baking sheets and biscuit rounds on Silpats placed on aluminum sheets, the former definitely spread more. The former end up with the bottoms wider than the tops (rather conical), whereas the latter are perfectly cylindrical. The bottoms of the biscuits sitting directly on aluminum are browner, too, and I like the crustiness. The Silpats seem to moderate the initial heat hitting the aluminum and cause the biscuit dough to set more slowly than when they sit directly on a fast-heating aluminum sheet.

Cookies on Silpats do not brown on the bottom as quickly as when they sit directly on aluminum sheets; I would guess they spread more, too, just as do the biscuits and scones.

#21 Wendy DeBord

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Posted 25 June 2003 - 05:58 AM

Nutcakes- I use them for certain cakes, mainly in full sheet pan sizes. No, they don't make them to fit inside cake pans and your right-don't cut them.

I absolutely love silpats. They are very necessary in a professional kitchen. Many items are practically impossible with-out them. But the question was about baking cookies on them and there are cookies that won't work on these.

I just bought 3 (full sheet pan sized) from www.cakedeco.com for under 20.00 each. The best industry/wholesale price I've seen on them is 24.00 and in retail stores I've seen them for 36.00. The prices have come down as the mass marketing has increased.

#22 Ladybug

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Posted 25 June 2003 - 07:23 AM

I make a lot of cookies for a home cook - I use them for gift baskets that I do for church functions and I give them away to friends. I usually never make less than 100-200 at time because someone is always willing to gobble up the extras. And I LOVE Silpats. I ALWAYS use them when I make cookies. I've never noticed that they spread more or less on a Silpat and the convenience is remarkable. No greasing and no burning. I've left cookies in too long a few times and they didn't burn. I think the Silpat sort of distributes the heat because I ended up with a crunchier, still edible cookie. Airbakes have always been a disappointment and parchment paper is more trouble - the paper slides around on the cookie sheet and can even slide right off. Plus, the scent of cooked parchment is unappealing.

#23 Elizabeth_11

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Posted 25 June 2003 - 10:41 AM

I actually bought mine (it's "Pastry Perfect, not silpat but EXACTLY the same!) at Marshall's for $9.95 in the baking/gourmet section. It's a just a tad bit smaller than the normal silpat, but for the homebaker it works very well.
-Elizabeth

Mmmmmmm chocolate.


#24 bloviatrix

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Posted 27 June 2003 - 04:09 PM

I was introduced to the wonders of Silpat at a class given by Francois Payard about 7 years ago. He made the most intricately designed cookies using tuile batter and assorted painter's tools. Ever since that, I use both Silpat and parchment paper (it depends on the width of my pan) and haven't found a difference with either.

You can find real Silpat at Marshalls -- my monther-in-law bought 4 of them thinking they were interesting looking place mats (she doesn't bake). I was the beneficiary. :smile:
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#25 Mottmott

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Posted 30 June 2003 - 01:10 PM

I also use the thin sheets of reusable silicon (?)"parchment" (sorry, I'm not sure what it's called) that can be reused hundreds of time, cut to size, and store easily. (I store them wrapped around my rolling pin). Unlike silpats, which recommend against cutting, these are meant to be cut to fit your pans. I'm not sure it's any cheaper than using parchment paper, but it saves you from having to cut parchment all the time.
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#26 elyse

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Posted 30 June 2003 - 04:01 PM

So there's no fibreglass in them?

#27 rickster

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Posted 30 June 2003 - 04:39 PM

These thin sheets sound similar to something I used to see in the stores called teflon sheets. They were as thin as parchment but were grayish black. I tried them but found them annoying to clean for some reason and switched to silpat when they came out.

#28 FuturePilot

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Posted 10 July 2003 - 08:42 AM

I also use the thin sheets of reusable silicon (?)"parchment"  (sorry, I'm not sure what it's called) that can be reused hundreds of time

Hi,

Am not sure either on the name. I found it under "teflon non-stick foil sheet" of all names. What a mouthful! :smile: I got it for for $8 from a website. I think it does come out cheaper, as the "teflon foil" is about the size of those commercial sheet pans, so you can basically get enought for about two cookie pans. Although, i must say, i think the silpat is much more durable.

By the way that same site sells silpats for 12.50! I'm new to this place and im not sure if posting names is allowed so if anyone wants to know the place just drop a line...

PS. This forum is just great!!!!

#29 sherribabee

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Posted 03 September 2003 - 09:36 PM

Does anyone bake with baking stones? I've used them for cookies at home for 8 years, and I couldn't conceive of using anything else (I'm trying to figure out how the heck I'll afford them if I ever live my dream of opening my own bakery). :sad:

Cookies turn out perfectly every time.
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#30 Richard Kilgore

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Posted 04 September 2003 - 07:46 AM

Futurepilot --- Welcome. $12.50 for half-pan size Silpats? Or what size? And posting a site or link is fine here.