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“Baking is a method of cooking food that uses prolonged dry heat, normally in an oven, but also in hot ashes, or on hot stones” according to Wikipedia. My own definition is anything cooked or baked in the oven. You might cook food in hot ashes or on hot stones while camping but home baking is usually going to be done in your oven. Personally, I prefer the oven. And home baking refers to food baked in an oven in your home.
Baking Or Roasting?
According to Wikipedia, “roasting is the action of cooking something in an oven or over an open fire”. Again no open flame here. So actually when you are baking or cooking meat or vegetables in the oven the correct term is you are roasting the meat or vegetables. I think it is all in the way you interpret because both definitions refer to cooking food in the oven. It just sounds better to say “I am roasting vegetables in the oven rather than I am baking vegetables in the oven. But then again some people do say I am baking a turkey in the oven and others will say they are roasting a turkey in the oven. So for argument’s sake, I am going with anything made in the oven in your home is home baking!
To me casseroles are a one dish meal baked in the oven and served in the dish it was made in. They can be easy with few ingredients are elaborate with many ingredients. The key is one dish meal. Usually with meat and potatoes or meat with vegetables. A meal that only needs a salad to go with it or if the casserole is meat and potatoes I like to make a vegetable to go along with it. Growing up my mom always had meat, potatoes, vegetable and a salad on the table for supper. Casseroles today are the way to go when making a meal. It’s easy and convenient especially if you are crunched for time. And the cleanup, well do I need to say any more on that subject?
Baked Potato anyone? I love baked potatoes, especially with extra butter. I know I know. My family is on me constantly about the butter but I really cannot eat them any other way. Some like to make them in the microwave. Not me! They are just not the same. They are just potatoes made in the microwave. No bake about them.
There are so many ways to make potatoes in the oven. I like them roasted. Sorry that word again but it just doesn’t sound right to say baked potato in this instant. I cut them in quarters and put them in a baking dish. I drizzle them with some melted butter and a little oil. Add a little sliced onion. Sprinkle them with garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Add parsley flakes and mix well. Bake them at 425 degrees until done. Yum! My son makes his a little different. He adds graded mild cheddar cheese, butter and bacon bits instead of the parsley flakes and onion.
There is scalloped potatoes, au graten potatoes, Twice baked potatoes and the list can go on and on. And they are all baked in the oven. This is baking!
Lasagna comes to mind. One of my favorite pasta meals. I like ricotta cheese in mine but I know a lot of people like theirs’ made with cottage cheese. I don’t like cottage cheese, therefore, none of that in my lasagna. Then there is baked macaroni and cheese, baked ziti, baked spaghetti, canneloni cavatinni, and again the list could go on. Do you see a theme here? They are mostly considered Italian dishes not including the macaroni and cheese. But really most pasta is considered an Italian. Gotta love them Italians, they know their food.
Home Baking is Not just Dessert!
There are so many foods that can be made in the oven. Not just sweet desserts and bread but also savory dishes such as meats, vegetable, potatoes, pasta, and casseroles. So when you say you are baking most people will assume you are making cookies or a cake when you may actually be making a casserole for supper! Remember home baking is anything that is cooked in the oven in your home.
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