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Q&A -- Understanding Stovetop Cookware


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#1 eGCI Team

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Posted 07 August 2003 - 01:23 PM

Please post relevant questions here.

#2 trillium

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Posted 07 August 2003 - 01:44 PM

Great job! But one question....

What about black porcelain enamel finished cast iron pans? They develop a "seasoning" much faster then raw cast iron and are non-reactive. And they don't need the babying that the ivory enamel does, you can use them for high heat cooking.

regards,
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#3 slkinsey

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Posted 07 August 2003 - 01:58 PM

What about black porcelain enamel finished cast iron pans?  They develop a "seasoning" much faster then raw cast iron and are non-reactive.  And they don't need the babying that the ivory enamel does, you can use them for high heat cooking.

I am not familiar with this. The kind of enamel I was talking about was the kind used by Le Creuset, et al. I've never heard of "black porcelain enamel." Who makes it?

Anyway... I am a little dubious at the idea of "seasoning" enameled cookware.

While on the subject of enameled heavy iron, however, I'd like to take the opportunity to shill for Staub, which I think makes very interesting cookware of this type. Other manufacturers of enameled cast iron, many excellent, are often lost in the shadows of Le Creuset.
Samuel Lloyd Kinsey

#4 trillium

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Posted 07 August 2003 - 02:48 PM

Le Creuset. It's the stuff that is on their not non-stick black colored finishes for some frying pans, "woks", "tawas" grill pans and griddles. While the idea of seasoning an enamel is kind of anti-intuitive I can't think of a better way to say it. The finish starts out black and matte and with a slightly rough surface and ends up black and shiny and smooth. You can get it that way by applying a thin film of oil and putting it in a low oven a few times. I'm calling that seasoning. It goes away with harsh detergents or some seriously high heat over a long period of time. I thought it was raw cast iron, but they insist it's an enamel finish.

I was just eyeing the Staub at Sur la Table the other day. Very pretty.

regards,
trillium

#5 mamster

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Posted 07 August 2003 - 02:56 PM

I don't have a question, but this was an amazing lecture. Nice work.
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#6 slkinsey

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Posted 07 August 2003 - 02:58 PM

Le Creuset.  It's the stuff that is on their not non-stick black colored finishes for some frying pans, "woks", "tawas" grill pans and griddles.

Interesting. I see what you're talking about, but I don't seem to be able to find any literature about it. Fundamentally, I suppose, it is not all that different from regular enamel -- just maybe a little tougher.

Oh well... I knew I couldn't possibly cover every cookware design under the sun. I didn't cover soapstone griddles and stewpots either.

I was just eyeing the Staub at Sur la Table the other day.  Very pretty.

Cool stuff. What I like about it is the lid with nodules on the underside to serve as condensation points.
Samuel Lloyd Kinsey

#7 fifi

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Posted 07 August 2003 - 04:04 PM

From one science geek to another... Absolutely excellent job! I thoroughy enjoyed this.

Just another interesting tidbit...

My first really good heavy pot a few years ago was the Calphalon anodized 8 1/2 quart saucier. The size of the pot (12" dia x 4 1/2" high) looked very versatile to me (and it proved to be so) and is still one of my favorite pots. In the literature that came with the pot was some blurb on how they use a high purity aluminum and have a special method of spin casting that gives them exceptional thermal conductivity. Well, being the cynic that I am, I consulted my heat transfer and metallurgy geek friends and they confirmed that high purity aluminum can have as much as 30% better tc that an aluminum alloy. That is because of the grain boundaries in the alloy are much more extensive than in a higher purity metal and grain boundaries are a hurdle for heat. That is what makes stainless a poorer conductor.

The final test was making a dark roux in a pot of this diameter on a dinky gas range (read... dinky diameter flame). The bubbling of the roux in the bottom of the pot was ABSOLUTELY EVEN across the diameter of the pot. I fell in love. That became my gumbo pot until I got my big LeCreuset and fell in love with thermal capacity. :biggrin:
Linda LaRose aka "fifi"

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#8 Nick

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Posted 07 August 2003 - 04:14 PM

This may not be the place to address this, but I'll ask it anyway. The gas ranges that I've been looking at (except for the simmer burner) typically have rather large diameter burner rings. As I am usually only cooking for myself I tend to often use smaller pans such as the All-Clad 1 qt. saute, 2 qt. sauce pan, and many 7 1/2" fry pans which are all fairly small in diameter. So my question is, will these small pots and pans work with the larger burners?

To add - I've cooked with cast iron for many years, but have been won over by the All-Clad stainless line. At this point I think the only advantages of cast iron over All-Clad are in browning and braising.

Also, in looking at your excellent introduction to all this (which I haven't fully read) you say,

"Black Steel/Blue Steel
- This is carbon steel that has been treated by a process of annealing, which makes the surface harder and less reactive. It also imparts a distinctive black or gunmetal blue color to the carbon steel.
- Because the surface is harder, black/blue steel seasons more like cast iron in terms of its durability and persistence. Because the surface is less reactive, one need not be so concerned about minimizing opportunities for chemical interaction between the food and the pan."


Annealing is the process by which the strains and stresses are taken out of steel after it has been worked, and results in a soft steel rather than a hard steel. It is typically used to remove stresses from working high carbon steel prior to hardening and tempering. It relaxes the steel and improves the grain structure.

Pans (I would think) are made of low carbon steel and the reason for annealing would be to remove the working stresses so that the pan doesn't warp on being heated on the range.

Edit: I should add for those that aren't familiar with annealing - the steel is heated to a temperature of 1350-1500F, maybe higher in the case of low carbon steel, and kept there for a period of time depending on the size, weight, and complexity of the piece(s). After that it is allowed to cool slowly.

Edited by Nick, 07 August 2003 - 04:25 PM.


#9 slkinsey

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Posted 07 August 2003 - 04:52 PM

Hmm... That's right about the annealing. It does make it softer. There must be something else that is done to blue/black steel -- perhaps whatever it is that gives it the black or blue color -- that makes it harder than mild low carbon steel. Because it is definitely the case, in my experience, that black/blue steel pans are harder than regular carbon steel pans.
Samuel Lloyd Kinsey

#10 Fat Guy

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Posted 07 August 2003 - 08:18 PM

Sam, may I ask a hypothetical question? Let's say I have $250, $500, and $750 to spend on a cookware gift for a newlywed couple -- novice cooks but eager to learn over time -- moving into a new home and currently in possession of zero utensils. How might you go about constructing some basic sets of cookware in those budget ranges? (In reality, I may be called upon to put together the $500 set on behalf of a group of friends going in together on a gift, in which case it's getting wrapped with a link to your lesson.)

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#11 gsquared

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Posted 08 August 2003 - 01:26 AM

Great work, Sam. I bought a new stock pot this morning using your guidelines - buying this stuff is easy if you know what to look for!

Edited by gsquared, 08 August 2003 - 01:34 AM.

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#12 slkinsey

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Posted 08 August 2003 - 07:56 AM

Sam, may I ask a hypothetical question? Let's say I have $250, $500, and $750 to spend on a cookware gift for a newlywed couple -- novice cooks but eager to learn over time -- moving into a new home and currently in possession of zero utensils. How might you go about constructing some basic sets of cookware in those budget ranges? (In reality, I may be called upon to put together the $500 set on behalf of a group of friends going in together on a gift, in which case it's getting wrapped with a link to your lesson.)

Well... a great place to look is Bridge Kitchenware's What Every Kitchen Needs resource.

For stovetop cookware, they suggest:
- 1.5 qt saucepan
- 3 qt. saucepan
- Large Surface Saute Pan
- Medium Saute Pan
- Omelette Pan
- Steamer Insert
- Medium Covered Casserole
- Large Covered Casserole
- Pasta Pot w/colander
- Non-Stick Fry Pan
- S/S Double Boiler

Personally, I would modify the list to this:
- 1 qt. to 1.5 qt straight gauge saucepan, sauteuse evasee or curved sauteuse evasee (Amazon has a 1 qt. All-Clad MasterChef sauteuse evasee -- they call it a saucier -- for 35 bucks)
- 3.5 to 4.5 disk bottom tall saucepan (Bridge Kitchenware has a 4.5 qt. Paderno Grand Gourmet tall saucepan for 78 bucks)
- 11" disk bottom saute pan (Bridge Kitchenware has an 11" Sitram Profisserie saute pan for 68 bucks)
- 11" straight gauge fry pan (Cookware and More has a 10" All-Clad MasterChef fry pan for 60 bucks or a 12" All-Clad MasterChef fry pan for 70 bucks)
- 11" straight gauge nonstick frypan (Amazon has 11" Calphalon Commercial nonstick fry pans in occasional sales as low as 30 bucks)
- 6 qt to 7 qt enameled cast iron casserole (Pans.com has a 6.75 qt Chasseur casserole for 163 bucks)
- 12 qt to 18 qt disk bottom stock pot with pasta insert (Bridge Kitchenware has a 17.7 Sitram profisserie stock pot for 117 bucks)

That would comprise a well-equipped battery of stovetop cookware that I think anyone would consider to be pretty kickass stuff that will last a lifetime. It is, of course, possible to get this set (or one similar) for less money if you are good at looking for things on sale. It is also possible to get even better by upgrading in a few places: go with Staub enameled cast iron in 8 quarts for around 220 bucks; go with a Falk Culinair stainless lined heavy copper sauciere in 1.4 quarts for 100 bucks (75 if you are a first-time customer) and so on.

A large cast iron skillet would compliment any set of cookware.

This does not include knives and that sort of thing, of course.

Personally, my philosophy is to slowly build up a battery of fop-flight cookware, acquiring one or two pieces a year as you start feeling like you need them. A perfectly good starter set for someone who doesn't have much of anything and doesn't have much cooking experience would be an 11" straight gauge curved sauteuse evasee, a 12 quart stock pot (mostly for pasta, but also works for soups), an 11" nonstick fry pan, a 2 qt saucepan and a 10" chef's knife. There aren't too many things you can't make with that collection.
Samuel Lloyd Kinsey

#13 alacarte

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Posted 08 August 2003 - 09:05 AM

Thanks for the lesson.

Can you give some specific instructions for seasoning a cast-iron pan? I've forked over the bucks for a nice one, tried to season it, and still ruined it with my first frittata. :sad:

#14 Dave the Cook

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Posted 08 August 2003 - 09:10 AM

Thanks for the lesson.

Can you give some specific instructions for seasoning a cast-iron pan? I've forked over the bucks for a nice one, tried to season it, and still ruined it with my first frittata.  :sad:

All the advice you can handle, right here.

Edited by Varmint, 02 October 2004 - 06:20 PM.

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#15 slkinsey

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Posted 08 August 2003 - 09:24 AM

Can you give some specific instructions for seasoning a cast-iron pan? I've forked over the bucks for a nice one, tried to season it, and still ruined it with my first frittata.  :sad:

Four things:

1. Cook a lot of high fat products in it. Like bacon. And sausages. Maybe shallow fry a couple batches of chicken. This will build up the seasoning, but it does take time. Look at it this way: it's a great excuse to eat BLTs 3 days a week for a month.

2. Remember to re-season after every use. This simply means that after you finish cleaning the pan you put it back on the heat, drop in a little fat (I like Crisco or lard for this) and use a paper towel to wipe the fat all over the pan inside and out.

3. Even at its most well-seasoned "nonstick" state, cast iron is still significantly stickier than teflon and similar surfaces. As a result, you will need to use a reasonable amount of fat when cooking notoriously sticky foods like eggs. Even then, it is common to find a thin film of stuck-on eggs after you finish scrambling. You can clean this off by scrubbing with kosher salt or a non-soaped steel scouring pad.

4. Don't make fritatta in a cast iron skillet unless you're willing to drop in a fairly significant amount of fat to lubricate the surface.
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#16 alacarte

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Posted 08 August 2003 - 02:00 PM

4. Don't make fritatta in a cast iron skillet unless you're willing to drop in a fairly significant amount of fat to lubricate the surface.


NOW you tell me! (just kidding)

In all seriousness, thanks for the info. I'll be investing in a new cast-iron pan, and a big bucket of Crisco.

#17 slkinsey

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Posted 08 August 2003 - 02:07 PM

In all seriousness, thanks for the info. I'll be investing in a new cast-iron pan, and a big bucket of Crisco.

Well, before you buy that cast iron pan, as the article says "what is it you want to do that you can't do with what you already have?" Maybe cast iron isn't the best choice for your needs.
Samuel Lloyd Kinsey

#18 Dave the Cook

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Posted 08 August 2003 - 02:14 PM

Um, cast-iron is my pan of choice for frittatas, though I admit it might not be the best one for everybody.

But I have to ask: how ruined is your pan, alacarte? I find it hard to believe that a cast-iron pan can be completely trashed by a few nasty eggs (Bad eggs! Bad!).

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Eat more chicken skin.


#19 slkinsey

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Posted 08 August 2003 - 02:27 PM

Um, cast-iron is my pan of choice for frittatas, though I admit it might not be the best one for everybody.

I tend to use my 11" stainless-lined heavy copper fry pan. The low sloped sides makes it easier to slide the frittata out. I also use a fair amount of oil in the pan and shake the pan a little once the egg starts to set so it releases from the bottom of the pan.

But I have to ask: how ruined is your pan, alacarte? I find it hard to believe that a cast-iron pan can be completely trashed by a few nasty eggs (Bad eggs! Bad!).

Yea. I was kind of wondering this myself. Pretty hard to ruin a cast iron pan.
Samuel Lloyd Kinsey

#20 oraklet

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Posted 08 August 2003 - 02:27 PM

slkinsey, that was a grrrrrreat lecture!

one question: traditional danish meatballs (and lots of other things, of course)should be slowly fried on medium heat. now, if i want to make a lot at a time - and i do, cause we are 6 in the family, and with frequent guests - i'd like to make them all in one pan. i've been thinking of buying a very large (sitram) copper-bottom frying pan for such cooking, feeling that it would serve well for my bolognese or curries, too. as i read your lecture, this seems to be the right choice. am i right in thinking so?
christianh@geol.ku.dk. just in case.

#21 slkinsey

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Posted 08 August 2003 - 07:06 PM

one question: traditional danish meatballs (and lots of other things, of course) should be slowly fried on medium heat. now, if i want to make a lot at a time - and i do, cause we are 6 in the family, and with frequent guests - i'd like to make them all in one pan. i've been thinking of buying a very large (sitram) copper-bottom frying pan for such cooking, feeling that it would serve well for my bolognese or curries, too. as i read your lecture, this seems to be the right choice. am i right in thinking so?

OK... when you say "traditional danish meatballs should be slowly fried on medium heat" I assume you mean that they need to be fried (as in, fried in hot fat) all in one layer. If this is the case then you do need a pan with a large cooking surface, and you are correct that a sauté pan might be a good choice for this. Sauté pans have a large cooking surface and the straight sides will prevent the fat from splattering all over the place as it might if you used a fry pan. So, there are a few other considerations:

1. Size -- you should figure out how much room you will need to cook all these meatballs at the same time. The next time you make a big batch of meatballs, if might be valuable to put all the meatballs next to each other in a roughly circular arrangement on a clean surface (countertop?) and measure how much room they need. The typical "large sauté pan" has an 11 inch or 30 centimeter diameter. However, this may not be big enough for you to make the meatballs you want to make all at the same time, and you may find that you need to go to a bigger pan.

2. Conductive material -- copper bottoms are nice, but since you are going to be stuffing the pan as full as it can get with meatballs and then keeping it at a relatively constant temperature, thick aluminum might be better. You really don't need the responsiveness of copper for something like this, thick aluminum will have a much larger heat capacity and the heat will be just as even. Also, an aluminum disk bottom is always less expensive than a comparable copper disk bottom design. If you do end up figuring out that you will need an "oversize" diameter pan and have a regular-strength stove that cannot crank out the heat like a Dynasty or Viking, you will benefit greatly from the higher heat capacity of aluminum.

3. While a sauté pan might be the best design for frying the meatballs, I think there are other designs that are more versatile for your other uses. The sides of a sauté pan are awfully low for making a long-simmered sauce like ragù Bolognese or putting together a curry. For those tasks, you would ultimately do better with a Casserole, which has sides that are twice as tall as those on a sauté pan in proportion to the diameter of the cooking pan. So, in the best of all possible worlds, you would have a sauté pan for the metballs and a Casserole for the ragù and curry. However, we don't live in a perfect world and you may have economic or space-saving considerations that dictate one pan for both uses. In this case, I would recommend a Rondeau. It has a large cooking surface for cooking your meatballs and the sides are tall enough (around 1/3 the diameter of the pan) to make it a fairly effective cooking vessel for ragù, etc.


So, assuming you want one pan for both tasks, I'd recomend a Rondeau with a thick aluminum base sized to have the diameter you need to cook a typical large batch of meatballs all at once in once layer. Paderno Grand Gourmet would be a great example. 7 mm aluminum bottom, heavy stainless body, comes in a variety of sizes from 8 inches (20 cm) to 15.75 inches (40 cm). My second choice would be Sitram Catering with a similar range of sizes and 2.5 mm copper bottoms. Third choice would be a Paderno Grand Gourmet sauté pan with a 7 mm aluminum bottom (they tend to have higher sides than the traditional design). Then a Sitram Profisserie sauté pan with a 7 mm aluminum bottom, if you can find one with a large enough diameter. Last wold be a Sitram Catering sauté pan with a 2.5 mm copper bottom.
Samuel Lloyd Kinsey

#22 oraklet

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Posted 09 August 2003 - 04:03 AM

thanks for a detailed and very informative answer. it'll be aluminium bottom, then. i'm still a little doubtful about the shape (though not the size). it's my impression that it will be easier to use a spatula in a frying pan with relatively high sides, than in a sauteuse. you are of course right about the ragus etc., though i've become accustomed to using a large non stick frying pan (which i ruined...). but the rondeau you linked to sure is a beauty!

i guess my large cast iron skillet is still the best choice for steak?


er...why is it that one should not "crowd the pan"? i've experienced that meat may start boiling instead of frying, but why?
christianh@geol.ku.dk. just in case.

#23 slkinsey

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Posted 09 August 2003 - 08:06 AM

i'm still a little doubtful about the shape (though not the size). it's my impression that it will be easier to use a spatula in a frying pan with relatively high sides, than in a sauteuse.

You are corrrect that it is easier to get a spatula into a fry pan. These are the only pans (other than griddles) that are supposed to be used with spatulas. The whole point of a sauté pan is that you move the food around in the pan by shaking it back and forth. This is exactly what I do when making meatballs. If it is important to have more "hands on" control of turning the meatballs, you should use tongs.

i guess my large cast iron skillet is still the best choice for steak?

Cast iron is definitely a good choice for steaks. The only thing that I have found to be perhaps a little better is stainless lined heavy copper (it has right around the same heat capacity as a cast iron pan at similar thickness, but conducts heat into the steak much more efficiently to form the crust). Since the whole point of using cast iron for something like this is to accumulate as much heat as possible, one should go for the thickest cast iron possible. I have always wondered why they didn't manufacture cast iron skillets with a 5 mm thick base.

Another good option for steaks is a cast iron grill pan, which allows the fat to drain away from the steak as it cooks. I often use a preheated cast iron grill pan when I make steaks under the broiler (the best way to cook steak, IMO).

Since cast iron is cheap, and since heatintg cast iron to the screaming hot temperatures that are best for steak will damage the seasoning, it is useful to have a dedicated "high temperature" unseasoned cast iron pan for this purpose.

er...why is it that one should not "crowd the pan"? i've experienced that meat may start boiling instead of frying, but why?

This has to do with the heat capacity of the cookware. Take a look at one of the "heat bucket" illustrations I used:

Posted Image

See those faucets on the bottom? Every time you put some food into the pan, a little heat drains out of the heat bucket and is conducted into the food. This is how the food cooks. The more food you put in the pan, the more heat is drained out of the heat bucket. Depending on the conductivity of the pan and the amount of food you put in there, the heat may drain out of the pan faster than the burner can put it back in. The net result of this is that the temperature of the pan goes down. Now, instead of cooking the food at a high heat, you are suddenly cooking at low heat. This is why it is important to have a high heat capacity (although having good conducvitity means that the heat capacity doesn't need to be quite as high, as the heat bucket is filled back up relatively quickly).

When you cook at high temperature, the liquid that is exuded from the meat boils off and the steam is dispersed more or less immediately. This provides a crisp exterior and promotes Maillard reactions. When the heat is lower, the liquid doesn't boil off very quickly. Also, the more things you have in the pan, the less efficient the dispersal of steam becomes. So... when you throw a bunch of food in a pan all at once, drain the heat bucket and lower the temperature, these two phenomena can quickly combine to create a situation where the food gives off a lot of liquid that stays around in the pan, and before you know it you are poaching the food in its own juices.

One other thing... sometimes, when the heat is really high and the pan has really good conductivity, the food can actually "float" on a tiny layer of its own steam. In this case, the surface of the food is subjected to extreme high temperatures, but only a relatively small amount of heat is transferred to the food. The result is a highly browned surface with a relatively cool interior. If you ever have a heavy copper pan, you can see this phenomenon at work. Preheat the pan on the highest heat setting for around 5 minutes, then drop in a teaspoon of water. Rather than immedlately evaporating as it would on a cast iron skillet, the drop of water will float around the pan like a hovering spaceship on a tiny layer of its own steam. It's pretty cool to see, and I've only ever seen this in heavy copper pans. If there is interest -- and someone in NYC who can record digital video volunteers to help -- I'll post a video of what this looks like.
Samuel Lloyd Kinsey

#24 oraklet

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Posted 09 August 2003 - 03:21 PM

once more, thanks a lot for your elaboration. it's really nice to recieve answers that do not just tell one to do this or that, but actually tell one why. by the way, the drop-in-a-hot-pan phenomenon can be seen on cast iron, too. at least on the very thickest and heaviest of mine.

heh, one last thing - stainless steel is about as non-non-stick as it gets, right? so, at least for danish meatballs - which are rather big - i think one needs a spatula. ?
christianh@geol.ku.dk. just in case.

#25 slkinsey

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Posted 09 August 2003 - 07:29 PM

heh, one last thing - stainless steel is about as non-non-stick as it gets, right? so, at least for danish meatballs - which are rather big - i think one needs a spatula. ?

Not necessarily. If you use enough fat, preheat the pan enough and shake the pan from time to time to make sure the protein sets before the meatballs have time to bond with the cooking surface you should be fine. In general, even on stainless steel, once the surface is sufficiently browned it will release from the pan with a shake or two. Where this becomes a problem is when the food is too delicate to withstand shaking without being damaged. With meatballs it shouldn't be a problem.
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#26 oraklet

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Posted 10 August 2003 - 04:11 AM

nice to know. thanx!
christianh@geol.ku.dk. just in case.

#27 fifi

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Posted 10 August 2003 - 10:05 AM

One of the hardest things that I have had to learn is to allow the browning to occur so that it releases from the pan. I have to really work hard at leaving it alone for long enough. I still have trouble with that but I am getting better. (One of the many things I have learned here.)
Linda LaRose aka "fifi"

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#28 slkinsey

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Posted 10 August 2003 - 11:03 AM

One of the hardest things that I have had to learn is to allow the browning to occur so that it releases from the pan. I have to really work hard at leaving it alone for long enough. I still have trouble with that but I am getting better. (One of the many things I have learned here.)

I find that, with most things, if you start with high heat and give the pan a good shake right as you put the meat into the pan, the protein will set enough in that first second or two to prevent further sticking.
Samuel Lloyd Kinsey

#29 tirgoddess

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Posted 10 August 2003 - 01:36 PM

Thanks for the informative lesson. I have a few pieces of (orange) Descoware (Belgium) from my mother's pan collection. This cookware is what got me to purchase the Le Cruset line. What can you tell me about Descoware? Is it available today? What other similar, maybe less costly brands, are available? Thanks in advance for your reply!

#30 slkinsey

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Posted 10 August 2003 - 01:52 PM

Thanks for the informative lesson.  I have a few pieces of (orange) Descoware (Belgium) from my mother's pan collection.  This cookware is what got me to purchase the Le Cruset line.  What can you tell me about Descoware?  Is it available today?  What other similar, maybe less costly brands, are available?  Thanks in advance for your reply!

AFAIK, Descoware is no longer made. You can, however, get pretty good deals on it on eBay and places like that.

As for cheap alternatives... this is just an expensive kind of cookware to make. None of the brands out there are particularly inexpensive. Chasseur is probably the most reasonably-priced brand of which I am aware. I believe Martha Stewart makes enameled cast iron, but I really don't know much about the quality. You might also call Bridge Kitchenware and ask what kind of prices they have and what line they carry. I do know that they refuse to carry Le Creuset because they think it is terribly overpriced (same thing for All-Clad).

That said, the best way to get reasonably priced enameled cast iron is to pick up a "second" at one of the Le Creuset Factory Stores or wait until a cookware store is having a sale.


One brief word on price: I know that spending 250 bucks on an enameled cast iron cocotte or a stainless lined heavy copper curved sauteuse evasée seems like a ton of money. But these are pieces of cookware that will last a lifetime and can be handed down to your children or grandchildren as a family heirloom. When you compare that to the money we spend without batting an eye on a not-so-great television or VCR or laptop computer that will be obsolete in 3-4 years, it really isn't all that much money.
Samuel Lloyd Kinsey