Baking is the technique of cooking food in an oven by dry heat applied evenly throughout the oven. The person that does the baking is called a baker. Breads, desserts, and meat (see also roasting) are often baked, and baking is the primary cooking technique used to produce cakes and pastry-based goods such as pies, tarts, and quiches. Such items are sometimes referred to as "baked goods," and are sold at a bakery.
The dry heat of baking gelatinizes starch and causes the outside of the food to brown or char, giving it an attractive appearance and taste, as well as sealing in the food's moisture. The browning is caused by caramelization of sugars and is the result of the Maillard reaction. Moisture is never really entirely "sealed in," however; over time, an item being baked will become drier and drier. This is often an advantage, especially in situations where drying is the desired outcome, for example in drying herbs or in roasting certain types of vegetables.
To compensate for moisture loss, some items (usually meats) are basted on the surface with butter or oil to slow the loss of moisture through the skin. Some foods are replenished with moisture during baking by placing a small amount of liquid (such as water or broth) in the bottom of the pan, and letting it steam up into or around the food.
Broiling is cooking food with high heat with the heat applied directly to the food. Heat transfer to the food is primarily via radiant heat.
In some ovens, broiling is done using the heating coil from the ceiling of the oven, in other cases there is a separate compartment.
In American English broiling done over an open flame on a grid-iron is called grilling. In British English grilling simply means broiling.
FlashBake is a high tech cooking technology invented in 1993. A company (Quadlux, Inc. from Fremont, CA, USA) made an oven that cooks with intense infrared and visible light radiation. It can cook like a regular oven with a speed close to that of a microwave oven. This technology is not popular in the home market due to the high price.
FlashBake is a registered trademark. This patented technology was licensed to various restaurant equipment suppliers, such as Wolf Stoves and Vulcan-Hart. Other licensees include home appliance manufacturer GE for their Advantium line of oven, and Bosch & Siemens in Europe. Amana developed their own WAVE ovens after failure to license the technology from Quadlux. Amana later lost in a law suit with Quadlux regarding this dispute.
Some high end products still use the technology, but Quadlux ended production on 1st July 2000 because of production difficulties with the contract manufacturer Watertown Metal Products. They ceased research and development and dropped to a staff of four. It is unclear as to whether they are still in business.