I often misspell the word ‘silicone’, because in my mind, it’s always followed by the word ‘valley’. And if it’s not in computers, then it should be in videogame consoles, controller skins, or mammary improvements. So the idea of silicone bakeware was somewhat disturbing.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, silicone is a chemical that contains silicon (of the valley variety). There are several types of silicone used to make items ranging from paint, varnish, artificial rubber… and yes, breast implants.
Baking dishes made from silicone are said to have several advantages.
- They are non-stick, which makes dishwashing infinitely easier.
- They are a lot quieter than metal bakeware, because silicone stacking blocks they are effectively artificial rubber, so don’t make loud scary noises when you drop them accidentally.
- Also, because of their rubbery nature, they are easier to remove cakes and cookies from after baking. You can simply bend the silicone and pop out the baked goods.
- Silicone dishes can withstand very high temperatures, so they are ideal for oven and microwave use.
- They are good for children’s cookery lessons, because they don’t break like glass dishes, or chip like enamel. However, when making the correlation between children and silicone dishes, note that there are two kinds of silicone. Silicone bakery sets are made from a soft, pliable rubbery material, while silicone resin is a much harder material. The resin is used to make tough children’s dishes that can withstand throwing, dropping and general tantrums, but would not survive five minutes inside an oven.
- Silicone is an artificial material, unlike glass or metal, which are drawn from ores and raw materials in the ground. In this way, silicone is kinder on nature, since its manufacture does not deplete the earth’s natural resources. It’s not fragile, and it doesn’t rust.
- Rubber, artificial or otherwise, is infinitely easier to clean than metal, and silicone baking dishes are the same. You don’t need tons of lemon paste and elbow grease. You simply need to soak the dishes for a while in warm water, then gently scrub the dirt away using a little soap.
- For the fashionistas among you, silicone bakeware is not as shiny as some bakery sets, but it does come in a variety of pretty colors.
- And silicone dishes look new even after use, so your cookware display will constantly look like it just came from the shop. Of course that means people won’t believe those home-made cookies really originated in your oven