I really like baking and eating cookies. As someone who has done plenty of both, I am also well-versed in the forever debate around cookies: crisp and crunchy or soft and chewy? I have my own opinions, but one thing is for sure — no matter where you fall on the issue, no one likes a burnt cookie.
Sadly, a burnt cookie is often what I wind up with. I have the uncanny ability of putting in a tray of cookies and completely forgetting I turned on the oven. Even setting timers can go awry for me. I'll check after the 12-minute buzzer and think, "Hmm, could do with an extra minute or two." And then forget to reset the timer. Ten minutes later, I'll be scrubbing the bathroom sink or reorganizing my shoes and my roommate will look up and say, "Is something burning?"
I blame this on genetics — I have never seen someone burn as much toast as my mother. Sadly, I don't have a solution for her. There is, however, hope for me in the form of T-Fal AirBake cookie sheets, which keep me from burning my batch of snickerdoodles.
The "how" here is relatively simple: The cookie sheet is made from two layers. The bottom layer absorbs the direct heat from the bottom of the oven. The top layer, where the actual baking happens, is kept from getting too hot because of air pockets between the two layers. Air circulation keeps the surface from getting too hot and burning the food.
It makes sense, but does it work? To find out, I (gasp!) purposefully tried to burn a batch of cookies. Using the T-Fal sheet side by side with my regular ol' baking sheet, I baked the two trays for a long time. Even when the classic tray made the cookies pitch-black burnt (and, in my opinion, inedibly charred), the AirBake cookies were a golden-brown.
The only caveat: Because of the air pockets, you can't let the cookie sheets soak, and dish detergent will destroy the nonstick surface, so you have to hand-wash. That said, the nonstick does work great, so you won't really need to soak. And this same feature also makes hand-washing a breeze.
AirBake also claims that the more even baking temperature can result in moister baked goods and even a decreased baking time. But the prize of non-burnt cookies, for me, is more than enough.