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Old 10-29-2011, 02:09 PM   #1
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ISO advice for gift for inexperienced cook - HA or SS

Hi All, This is my first post. I'm looking for some advice on a topic I don't usually deal with. Any advice is greatly appreciated.

I would like to buy a set of pots and pans (Kirkland from Costco) for someone who was recently married. She has been cooking for a long time, but has a hodgepodge of old stuff she doesn't really like; and she is not the chef type that knows specifically how to use articular types of pans (e.g. SS, HA, cast iron). I do know she would like a non-stick pan, but I'm sure she would also like a whole new set.

So, my question is, do you think she would be better served by a good stainless steel or hard anodized aluminum set. I know HA can be non-stick, but will it be in general if not used in a very certain way?

These are the two sets I'm considering

Costco - Kirkland Signature HA

Costco - Kirkland Signature SS

thank you in advance,
Mark

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Old 10-29-2011, 02:17 PM   #2
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Welcome to DC! I don't know much about HA, but I love my SS. It can also be used on an induction burner.

What a nice gift!
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Old 10-29-2011, 02:17 PM   #3
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What to Buy...

Welcome to DC.

I am not a fan of buying cookware from Costco, but I do shop there on occasion. Bottom line is I were buying cookware for an inexperienced cook I would buy something in a non-stick form. I don't use non-stick, but if somebody is just learning how to cook than being able have a non-stick pan would be great for their clean-up.
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Old 10-29-2011, 02:23 PM   #4
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Am also thinking while it may be nice to have a nonstick pan or two, for a whole set, you might be better off with SS. And you said your friend has cooking experience.
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Old 10-29-2011, 02:26 PM   #5
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I prefer SS to HA. HA is a surface treatment that can wear off or scratch off. It's usually not DW safe.

SS is more durable, easier to clean and DW safe. The set you linked to is a 'layered disk on the bottom' type. It works great on an electric stove. On a gas stove, smaller pots can have flames heat the pan beyond the disk and cause burned food.

Best bet is a tri-ply set of SS where the entire body of the pot/pan is a three layer material.

I have had a Costco tri-ply SS set for a dozen years and it performs as well as my All-Clad Tri-ply SS pans.
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Old 10-29-2011, 02:42 PM   #6
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experience

well, as far as experience goes, she is ~40 and has been cooking for her family for ~13 years. I do the same and I wouldn't call myself experienced as a cook, but I know how to put together a meal.

And, WOW! you are fast with the responses. Thank you so much!
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Old 10-29-2011, 02:43 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Webster View Post
Welcome to DC.

I am not a fan of buying cookware from Costco, but I do shop there on occasion. Bottom line is I were buying cookware for an inexperienced cook I would buy something in a non-stick form. I don't use non-stick, but if somebody is just learning how to cook than being able have a non-stick pan would be great for their clean-up.
Is there something in particular about Costco cookware to watch out for?
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Old 10-29-2011, 02:47 PM   #8
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With our once a year forays to Costco, we've never been disappointed. And as Andy said, his Costco cookware has been very satisfactory.
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Old 10-29-2011, 08:59 PM   #9
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Welcome to DC! What a nice idea for a gift for your friend. I like SS for certain things, my LeCrueset for others, and CI for yet others. My DH loves SS. I don't think you can go wrong with SS. I only use non-stick when I pan fry walleye. Having said that, if you want to buy a set, I think Andy's suggestion would be a good bet. Buy the best quality you can afford--I regret having bought an inexpensive SS stockpot--I ended up sending it to the Goodwill.

I've had my LeCruest for over 30 years. Probably the best $200 (yes, that was what it cost then--I know that the replacement cost is over $1500!) my mother ever spent to buy me something. She also bought my brother the same--we both still use them every day, but we each also have SS, CI, and one non-stick fry pan. Your friend may decide to keep some of her old pans because she likes them for something specific, but I'm pretty sure she'll appreciate your thoughtfulness and the SS pans.
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Old 10-29-2011, 09:06 PM   #10
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AllClad LTD...hard anodized aluminum on the outside, stainless steel on the inside. Pretty enough for a gift, practically indestructible and heats evenly. Can even get it with teflon inside.
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