||Pots and Pans
To do any type of cooking at home, you'll
need a set of pots and pans, but there is
a vast array of sizes, surfaces, shapes,
prices, and brands to choose from.|
Heavy gauge, highly conductive metals that
provide rapid heat transfer make the best
quality cookware, especially for cooking
on the stove top. The average cook will need
a small and large saucepan, a small and large
sauté (frying) pan and a medium sized stock
pot to get started. All of these should have
interchangeable close fitting lids. Griddles
and skillets are nice additions.
Consider the following when buying
- Metal cooking equipment can be made from
copper, aluminum, stainless
steel, or cast
- Copper is frequently the choice of professional
cooks because of its superior heat transferring
ability, but it can be very expensive.
- Anodized aluminum is manufactured by an electron
chemical process that makes it non-porous
and non-food reactive. It is 30% harder than
- Stainless steel is very durable, but it is
not the best heat conductor. It is often
given a copper or aluminum bottom to improve
this. Stainless steel is easy to take care
of because it is not damaged by cleaning
in the dishwasher. It has a long lasting,
attractive natural luster.
- Cast iron provides good, even heat, but it
is very heavy. It can be difficult to take
care of since it needs seasoning before it
can be used and cannot be washed in the dishwasher.
- Traditional surfacing for pots and pans includes
stainless steel, aluminum, and enamel. Small
amounts of fats or oils are necessary when
cooking with these to prevent food from sticking
and burning. Non-stick surfaces do not need
fats or oil and so are a healthy way to cook.
They are also very easy to clean up. Make
sure when buying non-stick cookware that
the surface is long lasting and durable.
Also, hard edged utensils will scratch and
damage non-stick surfaces, so use only those
made for this cookware.
- Better quality cookware will be versatile
enough to withstand the highest
and can go under the broiler.
be riveted on. Look for features
high domed lids and stay cool
An economical way to buy pots and pans is
by purchasing a basic combination set. Look
for manufacturers that offer a life time
warranty. Brand names include Farberware,
All-clad, Cuisinart, Calphalon and Circulon.