is a technique used in Grilling
, etc. that cooks the surface of the food (usually meat, poultry or fish) at high temperature so that a carmelized crust forms. It is commonly believed that this acts to "lock in moisture" while cooking
finishes, resulting in a juicier end product. However it has now been scientifically shown that searing results in a loss of moisture. Nonetheless it remains an essential technique in cooking meat as the contrast in taste and texture between the crust and the interior makes the food more interesting to the palate. Typically in Grilling
, the food will be seared over very high heat and then moved to a lower temperature area of the grill. In Braising
the seared surface acts to flavor, color and otherwise richen the liquid in which the food is being cooked.