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Old 12-15-2012, 02:50 PM   #11
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When the food is ready to release, as I described above, sometimes it needs a little agitation to release it completely. So banging it on the grate, shaking it or using a spatula to break it free will do the trick.

Skittle, maybe a little more fat in the pan will help.
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Old 12-15-2012, 03:16 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M. View Post
When the food is ready to release, as I described above, sometimes it needs a little agitation to release it completely. So banging it on the grate, shaking it or using a spatula to break it free will do the trick.

Skittle, maybe a little more fat in the pan will help.
I was thinking maybe a mix of butter and oil instead of just oil? Everything already gets a little greasy... But I will try letting it sit for a bit before messing with it next time and see if that helps. Thanks!
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Old 12-15-2012, 03:20 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skittle68 View Post
I was thinking maybe a mix of butter and oil instead of just oil? Everything already gets a little greasy... But I will try letting it sit for a bit before messing with it next time and see if that helps. Thanks!
This is the whole key to success!

The type of fat shouldn't make a difference with the sticking.
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Old 12-15-2012, 03:25 PM   #14
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Quote:
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This is the whole key to success!

The type of fat shouldn't make a difference with the sticking.
Good to know- thanks for the advice!
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Old 12-15-2012, 05:00 PM   #15
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This is one of the most annoying things I have to deal with! Sometimes it is about the temperature of the pan and the amount of grease, but most often than not it has to do with whatever I am frying not yet being ready to flip. It's super annoying though! I really like using non-stick pans. I usually encounter this problem more with my stainless steel cookware. The best advice I have gotten (and this usually works) is to make sure the pan is sufficiently hot before you add the oil/butter. It should be hot enough that a drop of water will sizzle upon hitting it. And then of course waiting until the oil is hot enough as well before adding the ingredients. Then I try to find the perfect temperature to cook on. If something is stuck, I will turn it to low and it usually become unstuck.
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Old 12-15-2012, 05:05 PM   #16
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I use a 3 inch paint scraper when frying some things. It is thinner than most spatulas and works great when getting the food unstuck. Just be careful when using it that you don't scratch the heck out of the pan. Once you get a nice crust on whatever you are frying it will be less likely to stick. Then after the first flip, I turn the heat down a notch and it will continue to brown without burning or sticking....
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Old 12-15-2012, 05:29 PM   #17
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If the water just sizzles, the pan is too cold. The water must ball up like a mercury ball and bounce around the pan. Check this out:



Additionally, make sure the water is no longer in the pan before you add the oil. This will prevent the oil from splattering because of the water.

What I do, is time how long it takes to heat the pan and test with the water drop. Then, in the future, I just know how long it takes to get to "mercury ball" temperature. (My 12 inch pan takes about 5 minutes to heat up.)

Also, I heat my ss pans using medium heat, not high. This was the recomended level that was on the instructions that came with the pans.
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Old 12-15-2012, 05:48 PM   #18
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Skittle, just out of curiosity, what kind of SS pans do you have? Are they tri-ply, disk on the bottom or a single layer of stainless?
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Old 12-15-2012, 06:58 PM   #19
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A few points worth covering. The most important and common reason for sticking has been mentioned, but it's worth recognizing its importance. Browning meat will release when it's ready. Sticking occurs when you try to rush it.

Stainless steel pans do need careful handling. Stainless steel is soft and gets softer when hot. It is easily scratched. Scracthed increase the chance of sticking when everything else isn't exactly right. Oil has to fill in all the other than flat spots, and excess scratches is asking for trouble. I do not use metal tools or abrasive cleaners on my stainless steel. Nor do I allow them to go into the dishwasher. That's a very harsh environment. Nor do I allow any deposits to accumulate. But stainless steel that has been damaged by long abuse with metal and abrasives can no longer be considered "non-stick" and should be discarded if they're your only cookware.

There is always much discussion about the virtues of hot-pan-cool-oil or hot-pan-hot-oil. But from a stainless steel sticking perspective food should go into a hot pan with hot oil. Hot oil better fills the fine faults in the metal surface. And there are always flaws, even in new pans.

Do not get too fixated on the high heat notion. High heat is appropriate for browning meat, but a lot of other cooking calls for low to medium heat. This is a difficult topic to talk about without live demonstration. When you need high heat, you really need high heat. But we can't put a label on the proper heat setting. There is far too much variation among ranges and between gas and electric.

Sticking is not all bad. You should never have to pry meat off the pan surface, leaving meat behind. But you also don't need and shouldn't expect to always have all food lift off without a trace. Without some material sticking to the pan, we would have rather poor gravies and sauces. But the caramelized material that's stuck should come off cleanly when deglazing with wine or other liquid. And if you think about it, for these desirable products of deglazing you require sticking. You just require it to release, too.

Eggs are a terror for many cooks. There's a finely defined point where enough oil and enough heat cooks eggs rapidly without sticking. I don't spend a lot of time hunting for it. I have one and only one pan with a Teflon type coating, a small fry pan for omelets. To learn to handle eggs in stainless steel, start with fried eggs and work out the correct situation, flipping when the whites start to set. Oh, and as with all foods, use room temperature eggs.

And stay away from cooking sprays. They will tend to gum up the pan surface, which will cause sticking. Heavy bottom pans will tend to stick less, because they will heat more evenly across the surface, and they will tend to stay flatter.
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Old 12-15-2012, 08:27 PM   #20
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Continuing the conversaton; correct temperature trumps all. Check this out:



Using a sufficiently hot pan is most important.

There was another video on Youtube that showed a guy frying an egg in a ss pan without oil...I can't seem to find it now.
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