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Old 11-08-2007, 05:28 PM   #1
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What is roast? Have seen several very different directions...

... Or at least they look very different to me.

(a) Is roasting supposed to be covered or uncovered?

(b) Is roasting supposed to be done in a liquid, or sans?

I've seen all four possibilities above described at "roasting". Lil help?

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Old 11-08-2007, 05:36 PM   #2
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I was thinking of asking something similar.
Someone said that laying veggies on a tray and cooking them in the oven is roasting.... well then, what is baking? I need some definitions myself.
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Old 11-08-2007, 05:39 PM   #3
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Roasting means cooking with dry heat. That is, a large piece of meat (a roast) in an open pan. This method is meant for tender cuts of meat like a standing rib roast or tenderloin roast.

What you are doing in a covered pot with your top round roast, results in a pot roast but it is not roasted, it's braised. Braising is to brown meat over high heat then cook it at a low temperature for a long time in the presence of a liquid in a covered container - wet heat method. This type of cooking is necessary for less tender cuts of meat. The low and slow cooking serves to tenderize the tougher cuts.

When people talk of a pot roast, I believe it refers to the cut of meat rather than the process. Pot roasts are braised.
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Old 11-08-2007, 05:39 PM   #4
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The technique of roasting is a dry cooking method (not in liquid, that is referred to as braising). Roasting is done in an oven and often the item being roasted is on a rack above the roasting pan. No top. The idea is to get the dry air and radiant heat of the oven to to crisp up the outside of the item, and cook the inside. THis crisping begins at 225 degrees F. Example: a roasted loin of pork. A pork loin with salt and pepper over the outside placed in a very hot oven, say 450-500, As soon as the outside dries out and begins to color, the oven is turned down and the pork is finished.
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Old 11-08-2007, 05:40 PM   #5
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Baking(dry heat method) is roasting for non-meat items. You bake cakes but roast meats.
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Old 11-08-2007, 05:44 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M. View Post
Roasting means cooking with dry heat. That is, a large piece of meat (a roast) in an open pan. This method is meant for tender cuts of meat like a standing rib roast or tenderloin roast.

What you are doing in a covered pot with your top round roast, results in a pot roast but it is not roasted, it's braised. Braising is to brown meat over high heat then cook it at a low temperature for a long time in the presence of a liquid in a covered container - wet heat method. This type of cooking is necessary for less tender cuts of meat. The low and slow cooking serves to tenderize the tougher cuts.

When people talk of a pot roast, I believe it refers to the cut of meat rather than the process. Pot roasts are braised.
Ah so. Getting closer to understanding.

So:

(a) My confusion stems from "pot roast" being a misnomer?
(b) And with roasting properly-so-called, the meat is supposed to be in direct contact with the heat source?
(c) What about the first poster's question about the difference between roasting and baking"?

Thanks!
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Old 11-08-2007, 05:47 PM   #7
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a) yes
b) not exactly. The roasting is done by the circulating hot air in the oven. So direct contact with the hot air. The heat source is the gas or electric heating element.
c) See my answer above
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Old 11-08-2007, 05:53 PM   #8
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a) yes
b) not exactly. The roasting is done by the circulating hot air in the oven. So direct contact with the hot air. The heat source is the gas or electric heating element.
c) See my answer above
Awesome - thanks!

I'll enjoy my "pot braise" in awhile much more, now that I understand the jargon a bit better.
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Old 11-08-2007, 06:51 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M. View Post
Baking(dry heat method) is roasting for non-meat items. You bake cakes but roast meats.
So would the more correct term have been baked vegetables? I believe we were discussing putting them on a pan, seasoning them and drizzling with oil. Someone called that roasting.

Also, in regards to the beef, I take it you can braise on top of the stove as well as in the oven?
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Old 11-08-2007, 07:39 PM   #10
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Let me modify my earlier definition. I would say roasting applies to savory dishes while baked applies to sweets.

You can braise on the stovetop in a heavy pot with a tightly fitting lid - a dutch oven as well as in the oven, using the same pot.
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