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Sep 15, 2005 04:26 PM

Poaching with Plastic Wrap

  • p

A friend of made a rolled stuffed chicken breast the other day by wrapping in plastic wrap and poaching. He assured me that this method was safe - and i saw that the plastic did not melt. anyone have experience with this or heard otherwise? would the plastic release some other chemical before it began to melt?

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  1. That sound more like steaming to me. I am sure the stuffing added enough moisture that was then trapped in the wrapped to steam cook the food. Poaching is when you cook food in a liquid. Semantics, maybe. I think what he did was perfectly safe provided it was micro safe wrap, which seeing as it didn't melt it most likely was safe.

    I steam food all the time in the microwave but never by just wrapping in plastic wrap. I usually put in a micro safe dish and cover tightly with micro safe wrap. Fish comes out wonderfully this way and is my preferred method when cooking for one. Not as effective when cooking for a crowd.

    1. s
      sally from LA

      yes- chemicals will leach from the plastic wrap into the food to an extent which is dependent on the fat content of the food. It is even recommended not to use plastic for microwaving for this reason...

      2 Replies
      1. re: sally from LA

        we stopped using plastic wrap to microwave a long time ago - glass plates work well to cover and glass or ceramic to hold the food. Seems safer ... read various bits about migration of some unwanted elements from saran or maybe even plastic ware containers.

        1. re: sally from LA

          Gordon Ramsay recommends poaching in cling film for pork fillet so if its good enough for him and his covers its fine for the population of this list.

          I've tried it a few times but find it very hard to make it watertight.

        2. It appears that most of those responding to the OP assumed that s/he was talking about plastic-wrapped food being cooked in the microwave. But I don't think that's the case. The subject was poaching, which means submerged in simmering liquid on the stovetop, no? I've seen cooking demonstrations where this method was used - kind of like making a forcemeat sausage encased in several layers of plastic wrap, tied at the ends, instead of sausage casing. My guess is that the heat from the simmering liquid isn't as intense as the heat in a microwave, so I don't know why there would be a problem with it.

            1. re: Steve

              sorry about's the right one: