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Le Creuset


CtznCane
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I have a 5-quart Descoware "buffet casserole" that I bought in the late 60s.

It is almost exactly like the Le Cruset 5 quart except the Descoware has a loop handle on the lid. (which I like better).

I use it for preparing things that are cooked covered, then the lid removed to reduce the liquid as rapidly as possible. (Smothered pork chops, "Swiss" steak, and especially paella) In fact, when I purchased it, the piece was identified as a "covered paella pan"....

When browning things like pork chops and chicken, etc., I don't want to crowd the items in the pan and the 3 1/2 quart is just a bit too small for my uses, however it is personal preference. I find it is a very versatile piece and often move it from stovetop to oven or broiler and because of the short loop handles, it fits in my smaller convection oven where a frypan will not.

It really depends on how many servings you are going to prepare. I still work three days a week and have a long commute so I often prepare enough for two meals (actually 4 servings, because it is my housekeeper and me). And I also do a fair amount of entertaining - thus the paella or cippino - even though I do not eat seafood, many of my friends do.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I'm getting married in a few weeks, and want to get a Le Creuset dutch oven, because I've heard so many great things about them. For the time being, I will only be cooking for my husband and myself (no plans for kids just yet), so I'm not sure what size/shape would be most useful. Any suggestions?

Edited by JaclynM (log)
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Somone gave my mom a 2 quart (or is it 2.5 quart) round. She went ahead and gave it to a single friend. So, she went out and got a 4 quart one. She really wishes she'd gotten the 7 quart oval, which is what I have. I love it. And, if you are going to braise, it's really nice to make more than you'll eat at one meal because the leftovers are wonderful. Plus, if you have people over, anything smaller is going to be too small. Do you live near a Le Creuset outlet? They have great monthly specials.

Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"
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I was actually considering the buffet casserole.  But I wasn't sure what I would use it for...any suggestions?

The buffet casserole is total magic for brisket.

I, too, have found that I use the buffet casserole (I have the 3.5 quart size) more than any of my other Le Creuset pieces. I've actually just ordered the smaller size, but I can't report anything because it hasn't arrived yet. :smile:

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I was actually considering the buffet casserole.  But I wasn't sure what I would use it for...any suggestions?

The buffet casserole is total magic for brisket.

I, too, have found that I use the buffet casserole (I have the 3.5 quart size) more than any of my other Le Creuset pieces. I've actually just ordered the smaller size, but I can't report anything because it hasn't arrived yet. :smile:

Well, my 2 1/4 qt flame-colored buffet casserole arrived late yesterday afternoon, and it hardly had time for a quick bath before it was plunked in the oven with a wee brisket (why is it that I never see large ones in the case any more ...) and its accoutrements nestled inside.

The pan size was perfect; the contents divine.

I've had some le creuset pieces for bazillions of years - gifts from my mom.

They are round ovens - and are enamelled on the outside bottoms - but those outside bottoms are ridged, kind of like a grill pan. The insides of the pots look like regular le creuset. The knobs are strange - a phrenolic cap that slips on and off of a regular metal knob - except on the smaller pot where I melted the phrenolic knob onto the metal one :smile: . I long ago ordered replacement knobs, but I can't get the old knob off the small pot. The screw must be rusted shut.

I haven't used these older pots since I got my smoothtop range (no, there is no gas line in my bldg) because I'm concerned that the ridges mean that the bottom of the pot only partially contacts the cooking surface, and I thought that was a no-no for smoothtops.

Of course, most grill pans (or at least the all clad and calphalon ones I've seen) have these same ridged bottoms (except the ridges also extend into the interior of the pans) - and I assume the respective companies wouldn't be foolish enough to manufacture cookware that cannot be used by a significant portion of their target market - or would they?

Anyone out there have any experience with these old le creuset pots, or with ridged pans on a smoothtop????

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Melic, how many pounds was the brisket? Trying to guage how large a piece of meat to buy for mine ;-). Thanks!

I was actually considering the buffet casserole.  But I wasn't sure what I would use it for...any suggestions?

The buffet casserole is total magic for brisket.

I, too, have found that I use the buffet casserole (I have the 3.5 quart size) more than any of my other Le Creuset pieces. I've actually just ordered the smaller size, but I can't report anything because it hasn't arrived yet. :smile:

Well, my 2 1/4 qt flame-colored buffet casserole arrived late yesterday afternoon, and it hardly had time for a quick bath before it was plunked in the oven with a wee brisket (why is it that I never see large ones in the case any more ...) and its accoutrements nestled inside.

The pan size was perfect; the contents divine.

I've had some le creuset pieces for bazillions of years - gifts from my mom.

They are round ovens - and are enamelled on the outside bottoms - but those outside bottoms are ridged, kind of like a grill pan. The insides of the pots look like regular le creuset. The knobs are strange - a phrenolic cap that slips on and off of a regular metal knob - except on the smaller pot where I melted the phrenolic knob onto the metal one :smile: . I long ago ordered replacement knobs, but I can't get the old knob off the small pot. The screw must be rusted shut.

I haven't used these older pots since I got my smoothtop range (no, there is no gas line in my bldg) because I'm concerned that the ridges mean that the bottom of the pot only partially contacts the cooking surface, and I thought that was a no-no for smoothtops.

Of course, most grill pans (or at least the all clad and calphalon ones I've seen) have these same ridged bottoms (except the ridges also extend into the interior of the pans) - and I assume the respective companies wouldn't be foolish enough to manufacture cookware that cannot be used by a significant portion of their target market - or would they?

Anyone out there have any experience with these old le creuset pots, or with ridged pans on a smoothtop????

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Melic, how many pounds was the brisket? Trying to guage how large a piece of meat to buy for mine ;-). Thanks!
I was actually considering the buffet casserole.  But I wasn't sure what I would use it for...any suggestions?

The buffet casserole is total magic for brisket.

I, too, have found that I use the buffet casserole (I have the 3.5 quart size) more than any of my other Le Creuset pieces. I've actually just ordered the smaller size, but I can't report anything because it hasn't arrived yet. :smile:

Well, my 2 1/4 qt flame-colored buffet casserole arrived late yesterday afternoon, and it hardly had time for a quick bath before it was plunked in the oven with a wee brisket (why is it that I never see large ones in the case any more ...) and its accoutrements nestled inside.

The pan size was perfect; the contents divine.

I've had some le creuset pieces for bazillions of years - gifts from my mom.

They are round ovens - and are enamelled on the outside bottoms - but those outside bottoms are ridged, kind of like a grill pan. The insides of the pots look like regular le creuset. The knobs are strange - a phrenolic cap that slips on and off of a regular metal knob - except on the smaller pot where I melted the phrenolic knob onto the metal one :smile: . I long ago ordered replacement knobs, but I can't get the old knob off the small pot. The screw must be rusted shut.

I haven't used these older pots since I got my smoothtop range (no, there is no gas line in my bldg) because I'm concerned that the ridges mean that the bottom of the pot only partially contacts the cooking surface, and I thought that was a no-no for smoothtops.

Of course, most grill pans (or at least the all clad and calphalon ones I've seen) have these same ridged bottoms (except the ridges also extend into the interior of the pans) - and I assume the respective companies wouldn't be foolish enough to manufacture cookware that cannot be used by a significant portion of their target market - or would they?

Anyone out there have any experience with these old le creuset pots, or with ridged pans on a smoothtop????

Oh it was really small - 2 lbs tops, probably less. Looked about the size of a sirloin steak. I swear it's more like matching the longest dimension of the uncooked brisket to the diameter of the pan than thinking about the weight.

But brisket shrinks! Boy does it shrink! It never ceases to surprise me.

The largest brisket I've ever bought slightly overfilled my 3 1/2 qt le creuset buffet casserole (it was kind of wavy stuffed in) to begin with, but when I lifted the lid a couple of hours later, there was more than enough room to spare.

Granted, the really big briskets of yore (7 lbs or so, I'll guess) don't find their way into prepacked meat sections these days.

OK - for the 2 1/4 qt le creuset buffet pan - brisket was somewhere over 1 1/2 lbs. Less than 2 lbs.

for the 3 /12 qt le creuset buffet pan - brisket was over 2 lbs. Probably 3 lbs tops.

If it doesn't quite lie down flat ... it will flatten out.

Now ... I've just gotten a 3 1/2 oval oven - and returned from the store with a 5 1/2 lb chicken. What to do, what to do ... :)

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Granted, the really big briskets of yore (7 lbs or so, I'll guess) don't find their way into prepacked meat sections these days.

Sure they do, you just have to know where to shop :). I've never actually seen brisket sold as anything other than a whole or half. My local butcher shop *only* sells it by the whole or half, Sam's Club and other such places also sell them in the normal fashion. The grocery stores around here don't usually sell it, but if you've got a grocery store with a real meat department you could certainly order one.

The local grocery stores sell such a pitiful quality of beef that I'd rather just go to my butcher tho. Then I get middling to top end choice, rather than ungraded beef that'd have a tough time making Select.

Emily

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Granted, the really big briskets of yore (7 lbs or so, I'll guess) don't find their way into prepacked meat sections these days.

Sure they do, you just have to know where to shop :). I've never actually seen brisket sold as anything other than a whole or half. My local butcher shop *only* sells it by the whole or half, Sam's Club and other such places also sell them in the normal fashion. The grocery stores around here don't usually sell it, but if you've got a grocery store with a real meat department you could certainly order one.

The local grocery stores sell such a pitiful quality of beef that I'd rather just go to my butcher tho. Then I get middling to top end choice, rather than ungraded beef that'd have a tough time making Select.

Emily

Actually, the smallish briskets I get now are "local beef"- from a farm that AFAIK raises Black Angus cattle mostly for breeding/sale to other operations. They do cull a small amount of beef; it's from young animals, and aged 28 days before it's even sent to the store. If I ordered in advance, I could get a 'whole' brisket - or a standing rib roast before the store I shop at butchers the roasts into Delmonico steaks. I think they only get 1/2 side of beef per week from the local farm. People either love the beef or hate it. I'm in the former category :smile:

I just keep forgetting to order.

Whole Paycheck's briskets-in-the-case are also tiny, and not IMO as good as these local ones.

As an aside, couple of years ago, I ventured into what is arguably the best specialty butcher around here--one that advertises their extra super special prime beef, and asked for a large brisket. The guy disappeared into the back, and presented me with a still-cryovac'd slab of Something From A ConAgra Company.

Ugh.

And it tasted awful, too.

I guess they didn't get too many requests for brisket there. :smile:

Another problem with brisket is the stores' compulsion to trim off all the fat before the brisket is packaged. I'd rather cook it first and trim the fat before serving.

I can't remember the last time I bought either meat or poultry (or fish) in a large chain grocery (Whole Paycheck excepted). That doesn't mean I buy expensive cuts; I just get to know where the stuff comes from and who's cutting it.

edit: this is where the beef come from: Roseda Black Angus

Edited by Melic (log)
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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 3 weeks later...

This person on ebay is selling Le Creuset at about 1/3 off retail price. I bought a big 7 1/4 qt round one off her for 165 or so (shipping included) and she was really nice and accomodating -- she reserved one for me in the color I wanted and sent me a replacement at her own expense when the first one was scratched (not her fault).

Just in case anyone was in the market.

edit: adding the information that prompted this post (doh!):

http://stores.ebay.com/Andis-Apparel-Plus_...genameZL2QQtZkm

Edited by fellowpeon (log)
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  • 2 weeks later...
Not Le Creuset, but close and a great price

Mario Batali 6 qrt enameled cast iron pot.

Looks impressive, especially at $60. Closer to LC than the low cost copies I have seen (and purchased). All made in China, including Mario's. I think LC has a problem, if they continue to manufacture in France.

Edited by jayt90 (log)
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I bought a 9.5 quart dutch oven at a outlet store in SC. It was a "second" and it cost me $200. I got such a large oven because the price for the next smaller size was almost identical and I can just about always cook smaller amounts in a larger pot but you can't cook large amounts in a too small pot.

Speaking with the outlet cashier she told me the outlets Always have a signifigant sale around the 4th of July and Christmas.

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 2 months later...

I'm having a hell of a time braising (lid on, of course) in my Creusets; even after preheating the oven, I get a really bad chemical odor emanating from the stove, and we've deduced that it's the black handle on the pot. (Temp usually around 350 or so)

Has anyone else had this experience? I want to give Bittman's bread recipe a try this weekend, and we can comfortably get the stove up to 500 without going to broil....but I'm a bit worried.

Any suggestions (other than using all cast iron or Staub)?

Thanks everyone.

BeefCheeks is an author, editor, and food journalist.

"The food was terrible. And such small portions...."

--Alvy Singer

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I'm having a hell of a time braising (lid on, of course) in my Creusets; even after preheating the oven, I get a really bad chemical odor emanating from the stove, and we've deduced that it's the black handle on the pot. (Temp usually around 350 or so)

Has anyone else had this experience? I want to give Bittman's bread recipe a try this weekend, and we can comfortably get the stove up to 500 without going to broil....but I'm a bit worried.

Any suggestions (other than using all cast iron or Staub)?

Thanks everyone.

I have a Le Creuset manual from a new pot and it says do not exceed 200C (which would be 392F).

Jamie

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I'm having a hell of a time braising (lid on, of course) in my Creusets; even after preheating the oven, I get a really bad chemical odor emanating from the stove, and we've deduced that it's the black handle on the pot. (Temp usually around 350 or so)

Has anyone else had this experience? I want to give Bittman's bread recipe a try this weekend, and we can comfortably get the stove up to 500 without going to broil....but I'm a bit worried.

Any suggestions (other than using all cast iron or Staub)?

Thanks everyone.

I have a Le Creuset manual from a new pot and it says do not exceed 200C (which would be 392F).

Jamie

Hmm. I just used mine to make Bittman's bread in my oven at 500 degrees without an apparent problem. And all I could smell was the bread baking.

MelissaH

MelissaH

Oswego, NY

Chemist, writer, hired gun

Say this five times fast: "A big blue bucket of blue blueberries."

foodblog1 | kitchen reno | foodblog2

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On my oval LC pot, the handles are metal loops integral to the pot itself. The lid has a black knob on top.

Both went into my blazingly hot oven. The only possible effect I noticed was that the screw holding the lid on loosened up a bit, but not to the point where it caused problems. And for all I know, this might have happened even before the pot went in the oven.

If the lid turns out to be a real problem, I'll probably find a metal shop to replace the knob with a metal one.

Leather elbow-length welding gloves are good to have in the kitchen.

MelissaH

MelissaH

Oswego, NY

Chemist, writer, hired gun

Say this five times fast: "A big blue bucket of blue blueberries."

foodblog1 | kitchen reno | foodblog2

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I mean the black knob---the pot itself is fairly old, probably close to 20 years old. Melissa, is yours more recent?

Welding gloves, huh. They didn't teach us that at ICE, but hell, I'll try anything. THanks!!

BeefCheeks is an author, editor, and food journalist.

"The food was terrible. And such small portions...."

--Alvy Singer

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Mine's much more recent, like within the last three years.

MelissaH

I mean the black knob---the pot itself is fairly old, probably close to 20 years old. Melissa, is yours more recent?

Welding gloves, huh. They didn't teach us that at ICE, but hell, I'll try anything. THanks!!

MelissaH

Oswego, NY

Chemist, writer, hired gun

Say this five times fast: "A big blue bucket of blue blueberries."

foodblog1 | kitchen reno | foodblog2

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The Le Creuset website states that the knobs are safe up to 450F

Phenolic knobs are heat proof to 450°F. Further, it is best to keep phenolic knobs away from the heating elements in an oven as the temperature in this area is generally hotter than the temperature throughout the oven.

http://www.lecreuset.com/usa/products/care...meled_Cast_Iron

When I had the oven up to 500 I did notice a smell but I didn't know if it was the oven or the knob on the pot. I'm guessing after repeated use at 500 the integrity of the knob may be compromised.

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