Aluminum Foil - A Great Invention!
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Aluminum foil has been around since I can remember. You are probably wondering why I am doing a review on the subject! Just about everyone has used foil some time or another, so what is there to write about? Well ...
Uses Of Aluminum Foil
There are SO many uses for aluminum foil! I will list all the things I have used it for, and just maybe you will find a few ideas you hadn't thought of yet!
* Wrapping sandwiches for school lunches
* Lost the lid for that storage bowl? Get out the foil wrap and it will cling and do a fine job as a lid!
* Line the shelf on your toaster oven when cooking pizza, pot pies, etc. It will catch the spill overs and keep the
cooking racks sparkling clean!
* Put it under your casserole that always boils over in your oven!
* Wrap and freeze meat and poultry in it
* Use it on the barbecue for grilling fish, if the fish falls apart it will not fall through the holes into the coals
* Make a tent out of it when roasting a turkey
* Of course, wrap baked potatoes in it!
* Use it round the edges of a pie to prevent the crust from burning before the rest of the pie is done
* Cover your broiler with it when broiling those steaks - makes clean up so much easier!
* Line the bottom of a show box with it when you have to send cupcakes to school!
* Use it for decorations and crafts. My daughter made a beautiful picture out of foil. Use it for covering a star when your daughter wants a "magic wand".
Different Types of Aluminum Foil
Foil comes in the ordinary, everyday form. It is also available in heavy duty form, I use this when I am cooking on the grill, it is more resistant to getting holes poked into it. It also comes in the very handy dandy foil packets - while these are very expensive, they are a life saver when you are out camping! I would never spend the money on these, but my hubby bought some once and I loved them - I buy them when they are on sale.
These are my very favorite recipes using aluminum foil:
Roast Beef with Veggies and Gravy
Put enough foil in a large pan to be able to cover a roast and veggies. I like to use potatoes. Put the roast in, add veggies, 1/2 package of onion soup mix, one can of cream of mushroom soup, salt, pepper, and garlic to taste, and a teaspoon A1 Steak Sauce. Bake on low heat for several hours. When this is done, it will have it's own gravy already made for you. Add a salad and some dinner rolls and it is a delicious meal!
Halibut in Foil
Tear off a large piece of heavy duty foil. Place a piece of Halibut in the center (or you can use Salmon, Cod, any type of fish). On top of the fish, sprinkle lemon/pepper seasoning, seasoned salt, thyme and a dab of butter. If you so desire you can also add a few onions or a slice of lemon. Bring up two opposite sides of the foil and double wrap them. Double wrap the ends and tuck under the packet. Put on the grill and cook (with the lid on) for about 15 minutes.
Love Letters In Foil
This is a family favorite! Don't know how they ended up being called love letters, but it has stuck with me!
Tear off a large piece of heavy duty aluminum foil, or use a foil bag. Add potatoes cut into the shape of french fries. Cover the potatoes with a few dabs of butter, some chopped onions, salt and pepper, and a little rosemary. Wrap up the ends of the foil and bake over hot coals till done. If you don't pre-cook the potatoes these can take quite a long time to cook, so cook them well before your meat. I prefer the taste if they are not pre-cooked, the potatoes are firmer.
Steak and Potatoes Dinner
Similar to the roast recipe, but can be done on the grill. In heavy duty foil or a foil bag, put a T-bone steak (or porterhouse, tenderloin, or other tender steak). Top the steak with sliced potatoes, 1/2 can of cream of mushroom soup, 1/2 a 4 oz. can of mushrooms, drained, 1 teaspoon A1 Steak Sauce, and salt and pepper. Close the ends tightly and grill for 20 minutes or so.
Cut slices of zucchini, onion, green pepper, and tomatoes. Make a packet out of heavy duty foil or put in a foil bag. Top with one tablespoon butter, 2 cloves of garlic, salt and pepper, lemon juice, and 1/2 teaspoon each of rosemary and thyme. Secure and fold under ends, and grill on barbeque for 20 minutes.
Onion Roasted Potatoes
Again, make a packet out of heavy duty foil or use a foil pouch. Cut potatoes in quarters (leave the skins on). Mix together 1/4 cup oil, 1/4 cup melted butter, 1 teaspoon thyme, 1 teaspoon marjoram, 1/2-1 envelope onion soup mix, and 1/4-1/2 teaspoon pepper. Toss the potatoes with this mixture until well coated. Add to foil, and pour any remaining mixture over the top. Broil or bake on a grill for 45-60 minutes.
I was told that when you bake potatoes wrapped in foil, to put the foil shiny side in, this way the potatoes cook faster because the heat does not reflect back off from the foil. I don't know if this holds true or not, but I have always followed this rule because it came from one fantastic cook!
Be careful when opening up packets of foil - there may be some steam inside and it can burn you. Steam is hotter than boiling water!
Foil comes in 12" and 18". I find the 18" a lot more versatile.
The Reynolds company says that foil is preferable to plastic wrap for freezing because it has a lower moisture-vapor transfer. This means that less moisture is lost from the food when wrapped in foil.
Acidic foods, such as tomatoes, will "eat" through foil. I have put foil over a bowl of spaghetti or lasagna, and when I take it out of the oven it has small discolored, pin prick size holes all over it. Make sure and remove these well before eating the food!
There You Have It
Well, I hope you liked my ideas for aluminum foil! And I hope you enjoy the recipes even more! Happy cooking, and happy camping! Here's to summer!
For more delicious recipes, visit the Reynolds website: http://www.rmc.com/wrap
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