Making a Foil Sling

This simple—and tidy—technique works every time.

This simple—and tidy—technique works every time.

With their gooey fillings and high sugar content, brownies and bar cookies and often snack cakes can be nearly impossible to remove from their baking pans—no matter how well the pan is greased. After baking countless batches, we finally found a method that works every time. Lining the pan with an aluminum foil or parchment paper "sling" before baking prevents any casualties. Once cooled, the bar cookies may be lifted easily from the pan, transferred to a cutting board, and cut into tidy squares.

1. Fold two long sheets of aluminum foil so that they are as wide as the baking pan (if the dish is rectangular, the two sheets will be different sizes). Lay the sheets of foil in the pan, perpendicular to one another, with the extra foil hanging over the edges of the pan. 

2. Push the foil into the corners and up the sides of the pan. Try to iron out any wrinkles in the foil, smoothing it flush to the pan. Grease the sides and bottom before adding the batter. 

3. After the brownies, bars, or cakes have baked and cooled, use the foil sling to lift and transfer them to a cutting board before cutting into squares. The foil should easily peel away. 

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