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ltarq

Cookware Recommendations?

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What saute pans are best to use? I currently use ceramic bc of it's non reactive and non stick components but after a while I have to replace them.

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I recently bought a set of 3 pans from Costco and love them!  There is a small, medium and really large pan.  I have used them every day, more than once per day, to cook with. Their only downfall is they don't have lids.  I have resorted to using lids from other pans to cover foods. They are aluminum with a non stick coating.

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Thanks tigger girl, I've stopped using non stick because of their reaction to foods. I'm trying to see what's healthy and still be able to use something like ceramic that has a non stick quality to them.

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My pan I use the most, by far, is a 12 inch aluminum skillet. My husband got it in a restaurant supply store. Love it: can use it on the stovetop and in the oven. It's not non-stick: just use enough cooking fat and it's fine.

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Cook's Illustrated / America's Test Kitchen does extensive testing of cookware and gives their recommendations for the best quality pieces.  They unanimously recommend All Clad, but it's outrageously expensive.  Their next-best recommendation is almost identical for a fraction of the price.  Tramontina Tri-Ply cookware.  The same specifications as All Clad, at a very affordable price.  I love mine.

 

You can get this at online at WalMart.com, but it is rarely found in stores.  WalMart stores usually carry the regular (not nearly as good) Tramontina single-ply stuff.  You can use the Ship-To-Store option for free shipping from WalMart.com and pick them up at your local store.  Just be SURE you are getting the "Try-Ply" version.  You can buy in sets or individual pieces. 

I cannot recommend them enough. Every time you pull it out, you feel like you're on a television cooking show set. They are gorgeous. Like a good cast iron skillet, these pans are the type of item you will use for the rest of your life.

 

Tramontina Try-Ply 12-inch Skillet - $49           Tramontina Try-Ply 8 Piece Set - $139

 

The fabulous cooking website Serious Eats also confirms that the Tramontina is the best skillet on the market for the money.

 

Serious Eats:  All-Clad vs. Tramontina Try-Ply

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Cast iron for skillets. I love my All Clad sauce pans but  as for skillets or sautee pans? I will never use anything other than cast iron again. 

 

I have 8 cast iron in various sizes I bought at garage sales and thrift shops for very cheap. They needed a good  scrubbing and re-seasoning but they will last for generations.  They cook evenly, are easy to clean and care for  and they are the best! I stopped using non stick years ago when I got one so hot that the coating burned, set off the smoke alarm in my apartment building and they had to evacuate the entire building and the fire department came.. um...no that wasn't embarrasing AT ALL. 

 

 

I covet a Le Creuset  dutch ovens but they are too expensive! I found  a martha steward on at Goodwillf or 8 bucks. It's  enamel coated cast oven and it's great. The only problem is that the lid on the handle is plastic. It is removable so I can put it in the oven but it sucks to remove the lid without a handle.   

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I covet a Le Creuset  dutch ovens but they are too expensive! I found  a martha steward on at Goodwillf or 8 bucks. It's  enamel coated cast oven and it's great. The only problem is that the lid on the handle is plastic. It is removable so I can put it in the oven but it sucks to remove the lid without a handle.   

 

Le Cruset's Dutch Ovens now come with a plastic handle as well.  I also own the Martha Stewart version, and the plastic handles on them (and the Le Cruset) are oven-safe to 450 degrees, so there should be no reason to remove it before using it in the oven... that's what they were made for.

 

For what it's worth, Sur La Table has started selling replacement handles for the new LeCruset dutch ovens because people are upset they switched to plastic, even though its oven safe.

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OMG THANK YOU! As I said, I got the martha stewart one second hand so I had no idea. I just took the handle off. And I burn myself with steam on a regular basis. Im leary to put plastic in the oven....but I will try it. Good thing I didnt' chuck it in the trash!

 

I am not going to go to the sur la table site to look at the handles of which you speak. I just spend too much money if I even look at their site :)

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I have a Scanpan skillet I use for nonstick that I picked up on sale. I love it and use it for most things. I do have an All Clad pan with the tall sides (and a couple pots/small fry pan - got a set 20 years ago), which is very useful for some dishes, and a cast iron pan for the rest.

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I have two sets of pans (both basically have a small, medium, and large).  One is a set of cast-iron handed down from my mom and the other is a nonstick I got from Walmart.  I find there are certain things that do really well in my cast iron but others don't.  For example, if I fry eggs in my cast iron, I can sometimes have a problem with them sticking to the bottom (which is probably due to me not seasoning my skillet enough).

However, I'm slowly acquiring a set of porcelain enamel cast iron cookware (pricey), and it's the best of both worlds to me.  The heating is very even and the enamel helps with the nonstick aspect (and clean up!).  If you can, I'd definitely go with maybe one or two to start with.

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