Have you ever went into a department store and were overwhelmed by all of the choices of cookware that were on display? I can definitely understand the feeling – especially if you are brand new to home cooking. I was fortunate enough to work for a company that sold gourmet cooking implements so I learned a lot…
Foodal’s Cookware Reviews
If you love to cook or you’re looking forward to learning to prepare good at home, then buying high end cookware is probably the best place to start and reading as many cookware reviews as possible will get you more educated on what you are buying.
On the other hand, if you seldom cook or find it excruciating to be in the kitchen, spending a lot of money on items that will not be used seems silly. Let’s take a look at what’s out there by clicking on the tab to the right.
Types of Cookware
Most pots and pans fall under two categories, non-stick or uncoated. T-Fal, for example, falls under the non-stick category. The basic plus side of non-stick is obvious, food doesn’t stick to the pans making clean up a breeze. The downside is that most non-stick pans should not be used for high heating nor can you use metal utensils for stirring, scraping or flipping.
You’ll find most non-stick pans sport a plastic handle which gives the cookware another disadvantage; they cannot go from stove top to an oven beyond 350 degrees.
However, the handles don’t get hot while cooking and non-stick pans and skillets tend to be lighter overall.
As non-stick ages the Teflon coating begins to flake and ends up in food and ultimately ingested. As the jury decides the health risks and hazards of Teflon a good approach may be to look elsewhere or keep one or two pieces for eggs and omelets and other foods that have a tendency to be “clingy.”
Aluminum, stainless steel and cast iron all fit under the heading of uncoated. Each type of cookware has its pros and cons. The price range varies greatly depending on the gauge of the metal, where it is manufactured, and of course the reputation of the brand.
Cast iron may be slow to heat and cool, but conducts heat even and with consistency. This is a huge plus in the cookbook of most chefs. The durability of a well-kept cast iron is widely known; they can last forever.
Cleaning it up can be as simple as wiping it with a paper towel or soft cloth if the skillet has been seasoned correctly. At the other end of the spectrum lies a skillet that requires a lot of elbow grease and time to clean it properly.
Some people believe it’s a good idea to have at least one well-seasoned cast iron skillet waiting in the pantry.
Want to know more? Take a look at Foodal’s Cast Iron Reviews.
Carbon steel is very similar in performance and has seasoning requirements to cast iron.
This material is a bit lighter in weight but cooks much the same way as cast and is a suitable alternative for those who don’t want lug around a heavy skillet. Read more about carbon steel cookware now.
Stainless steel and aluminum
These are two of the most popular metals for pots and pans. This is the realm of companies such as Calphalon and All-Clad. Commercial level pots and pans are heavy and last, but along with the durability of the product comes a heftier feel and a high end price.
Many of the stainless steel varieties are clad or “tri-ply” – meaning that they sandwich a thick layer of aluminum and or copper in between two layers of stainless in order to take advantage of the thermal properties of these two metals.
Stainless steel and aluminum cookware are the most versatile.
Both are dishwasher safe and they hold up to metal utensils and are safe for acidic foods. When it comes to browning, aluminum and stainless steel beats most and ties with cast iron, depending on the cook’s preferences.
This heat spreads evenly throughout the pan’s bottom making and it is simple to dial in incremental adjustments to the temperature and is a favorite of French chefs (it is not a coincidence that the bulk of it is still made in France).
A good conductor of heat, tempered glass has the ability to go from freezer to oven to table without skipping a beat. An unfortunate disadvantage is that tempered glass breaks easily if dropped or banged.
As you can see, there are many types to choose from and Foodal offers many cookware reviews to help you decide.
For futher research check out Foodal’s Guide to the Best Cookware or all of the assorted articles and cookware reviews below.
Foodal's Cookware Reviews
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