Sunday confessions: I’m not a fan of silicone

I’ve been doing some baking recently – a muffin here, a slice there, cupcakes in the middle. What with the World’s Biggest Morning Tea, the cross country and a sudden desire to stop spending $16 a week on muesli bars, the stove at the Fibro has been cranked up to red hot. In the midst of all this stirring and rising, I’ve come to one conclusion I simply must share:

I hate silicone bakeware.

This is not a subject about which I ever thought I’d have strongly held notions. But there you have it.

At one stage, I had a fair amount of the stuff. Somewhere along the line, in the obscure manner of these things, I’d collected a loaf ‘tin’, a cake ‘tin’, a slice ‘tin’, two muffin ‘tins’ and a star-shaped arrangement, which was clearly aimed at a baker of higher standard than I. As I clear out my kitchen in preparation for my move, I note that only the muffin ‘tins’ and the star-shaped thing remain.

I remember well what happened to the slice tin. I made a slice in it. But slices require hard surfaces. Any bend or curve, weft or weave, and the whole slice falls apart. I think the crumbled slice and the slice ‘tin’ went into the bin holus-bolus as I wept and wondered if I had the makings of another one in the cupboard.

The muffin ‘tins’ have survived longer, simply because, tis true, the muffins do slide out of them more easily than they do the standard, er, tin ‘tin’. But I made some lovely pear-and-almond muffins for a communal morning tea today and they’re just looked… anaemic. Things just don’t brown. Crusts don’t crust. There’s no lustre to the baking.

As I tried to unobtrusively slide my pale little muffins onto the table this morning, one of the other mums commented on how lovely they looked. I couldn’t help myself. “Aaaugh,” I said. “They’re lily livered. I baked them in silicone–”

“Don’t tell me,” she said, holding up one hand. “They don’t brown, they don’t crust. I hate that silicone bakeware. I’ve chucked out all of mine.” Another mum nearby nodded.

So now I must know. My random survey of three mums (including myself) has uncovered no friends of silicone cookware. Are we missing something?

Are you a fan? Can you explain what we’re doing wrong? Or maybe you’ve got your own silicone horror story to share?