We've been testing out a new line of collapsible, silicone products from FoldTuk and can't wait to share our results. This brightly colored line of bakeware is safe to use in your freezer, microwave, and oven — but best of all, they're great for small spaces as they can expand and collapse easily. Ready to hear why we like them and why we're not throwing out our Pyrex anytime soon?The FoldTuk products are patent pending and made from silicone and ceramber, which is a silicone and ceramic blend. This mixture is safe for your family (no leeching chemicals) while still allowing it to be heated up to 500 degrees in your oven or head into your freezer for any extent of time. We had the chance to try out collapsible roasting pan (3 words that aren't normally used together) and a few smaller storage/side dish sizes.
When we first opened up our boxes, it was like Christmas. There were new shiny products to play with and care instructions to read. FoldTuk products are quite versatile, but don't do well with sharp utensils (obviously) and when reheating food in the microwave, the lids needs to be unlocked to decrease steam build up. We spent a solid 15 minutes expanding and collapsing the pieces, as it's a rather cathartic feeling and sound— like popping bubble wrap.
Since their arrival in our home we've put them through all sorts of tests. They've been through 3 different cycles in our dishwasher with different heat settings and dry times, all of which turned out great. We've frozen, microwaved, baked and roasted in them, all of which yielded tasty results. The only problem we had (personally) is their inability to crisp or brown.
We tested the large roasting pan (which collapses down to take up just 3 inches, lid included), which could be the most beautiful one we've ever seen. It's large, red and held a ridiculous amount of food. We threw together fixings for a roast beef, along with onions, mushrooms and whole cloves of garlic surrounding it. In the smaller trays we also cut up potatoes and tossed them with some olive oil and a little salt and pepper.
Our feast was set and in the oven. When the meat was done we pulled everything and we noticed two things right away. First, the olive oil that would have usually crisped the outside of the potatoes, didn't. Instead we pulled a boiling oil and potato mixture from the oven (as you can see in the picture above). It tasted great, but it was quite obvious that we only needed far less oil than usual and that although the potatoes were super soft and creamy, they weren't crispy like oven roasted potatoes usually are.
Next up was our assessment of the large roasting pan. The meat was extra tender and juicy and we didn't have the slightest qualm with it, but because it didn't caramelize any of the onions or garlic, the juices left in the pan were quite plentiful (almost 8 cups of liquid!!). The veggies were quite tasty (the mushrooms were the real superstar of the night as they stayed full and plump) but didn't have that extra layer of flavor that you would normally have from a roasted vegetable. We later used the pans for macaroni and cheese and a few other casseroles and they did brilliantly. The tops of our food were crusty, while the bottom layers were moist and bubbly. You can check out (albeit blurry) pictures of some of our food adventures above.
The plastic has retained a slight smell from the previous dishes, but isn't something that is a huge concern as we've been told we have overly sensitive sniffers. They fold almost flat and take up almost no space in our cabinet. They've been super fun to play around with and certainly brighten our kitchen while getting done the job they promise to do.
Our final assessment of them is that they're worth the money spent to purchase, but for those home cooks who are into their pan sauces and really love the extra taste that roasting adds to a dish, then these probably aren't for you. If you're new to the kitchen and are still a little terrified about leaving a dish in the oven too long, or drying out your meat, then these are right on target for your kitchen. Dare we saw it would be impossible to burn anything in them and with their fabulous ability to retain every last bit of moisture in a dish, they are sure to yield tasty results every time.
There's fun little videos over on the FoldTuk website to demonstrate their ability to expand and collapse, along with more info on the material makeup of the silicone used as we're sure that's a big concern for many of you. The roasting pan (which is available in several colors) retails for $80 while the smaller pieces come in between $15-$22 in assorted shapes and sizes. Here's their main product page for a quick run down of everything they have to offer.
Related: Survey: Silicone vs. Nonstick
(Images: Fold Tuk and Sarah Rae Trover)