Once you get used to the ease and convenience of parchment paper, there’s no turning back. You won’t have to worry about sticking pastries or cakes again. Buy the largest sheets you can find so they can be cut to size without patching. Whenever possible, buy parchment paper that is packaged flat, and not rolled—the rolled paper curls up on the pan. The only way to fix this problem is to grease the pan to glue the paper in place.
Wax paper starts to scorch at 300°F, so while it can be used for lining the bottoms of cake pans (where it is covered and protected by the batter), it can’t substitute for parchment paper in applications where it will be exposed to the oven heat.
Baking mats are flexible sheets of silicone that can be reused hundreds of times before they lose their nonstick quality. Some brands can be trimmed with scissors to fit your pans. It’s worth having a few of them to fit the baking pans you use most often.
Parchment paper and baking pads are available at most kitchenware stores. The Baker’s Catalogue from King Arthur Flour is a good mail-order source for flat parchment paper (see Sources).
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