Twines & Ties

From Cook's Country | April/May 2013

Overview:

Kitchen twine is indispensable for trussing whole chickens, tying roasts and rolled stuffed meats, and making bundles of herbs for flavoring stews. (Never cook with twines that aren’t specifically labeled “kitchen” or “food-safe.”) Does it matter which kind you use? And what about reusable food ties made of silicone? We tested cotton and linen kitchen twine as well as two brands of silicone food ties, using them on stuffed 11-inch-long flank steaks for braciole and to truss chickens. When all was said and done, nothing beat cotton twine. It never frayed, singed, split, or broke, and it stayed put when we tied knots. It’s inexpensive and efficient. Linen twine worked equally well but was more expensive. We’ll stick with our winner for our cooking needs.

Kitchen twine is indispensable for trussing whole chickens, tying roasts and rolled stuffed meats, and making bundles of herbs for flavoring stews. (Never cook with twines that aren’t specifically labeled “kitchen” or “food-safe.”) Does it matter which kind you use? And what about reusable food ties made of silicone? We tested cotton and linen kitchen twine as well as two brands of silicone food ties, using them on stuffed 11-inch-long flank steaks for braciole and to truss chickens. When all was said and done, nothing beat cotton twine. It never frayed, singed, split, or broke, and it stayed put when we tied knots. It’s inexpensive and efficient. Linen twine worked equally well but was more expensive. We’ll stick with our winner for our cooking needs.

less
  • Product Tested

    Results Key:

    Good ★ ★ ★ Fair ★ ★ Poor
  • Prices are subject to change.
  • Highly Recommended - Winner

    Librett Cotton Butcher’s Twine

    This ball of 100 percent cotton twine tied and held foods without burning, fraying, splitting, or breaking. It made neat, even ties around braciole and whole chicken and stayed in place without slipping. Although any cotton twine might perform as well, this brand releases string from the center of the ball, letting us pay it out with no danger of it rolling off the counter.

    • Ease of Use ★★★
    • Performance ★★★

    $8.29 (2 cents per foot)

  • Recommended

    French Linen Butcher’s Twine

    This compact ball of linen twine comes in a clear plastic container with an opening for the string and a small blade for portioning lengths, but we still needed our kitchen shears to snip off ends after tying. Thinner than cotton twine and slightly more expensive, linen proved just as strong and simple to use.

    • Ease of Use ★★★
    • Performance ★★★

    $9.99 (3 cents per foot)

  • Recommended with Reservations

    Trudeau Food Tie Wraps

    These flexible, stretchy, 11-inch silicone ties come in a set of six—not enough to tie our braciole at 1-inch intervals. Using a tab and loop mechanism, they were easier to tie than another silicone product but proved slippery. The ties didn’t melt in a hot skillet or a 450-degree oven, and we could pull and secure them to truss a chicken evenly for uniform roasting.

    • Ease of Use ★★
    • Performance ★★

    $14.20; reusable

  • Not Recommended

    Fusionbrands The FoodLoop Trussing Tool

    Although they held up to searing in a hot pan and roasting in a 450-degree oven, we needed more than one set of four textured 13½-inch silicone ties to tie our braciole at 1-inch intervals. Spaced 2 inches apart, they let the rolled meat bulge in between and left ugly indentations. As for trussing a chicken, these loops pulled the legs to one side as we tightened the cinch, making the bird lean, which resulted in lopsided roasting.

    • Ease of Use ★★
    • Performance

    $10; reusable

In My Favorites
Please Wait…
Remove Favorite
Add to custom collection