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Old 08-06-2007, 02:05 PM   #21
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a lot of us could spend a lot of your money helping you outfit your kitchen. But my advice is: 1) whatever you buy, buy good quality 2) buy what you need right now and keep a running list of items for future purchace 3) if you like shopping, check out the discount stores like Marshalls TJMax etc becaus ethey get overstocks from kitchenware companies and sell for 1/2 price. Also check out the stores like Kitchen Konnection, Kitchen Kapers, Sur la Table, Gourmet Chef etc. but beware as they all have things NO ONE needs or uses.
Bed Bath and Beyond and Linnens and Things are good too.
so what is essential? a couple skillets say 10 and 12 in non stick ... a couple sauce pans with lids 2 and 3 qt, 1 "dutch oven" 5 or 6 qt...a roasting pan, a broiling pan (most stoves came with them), a couple pie plates, mixinhg bowls, a french knife, a paring knife, and bread knife (serrated) a knife sharpoener, 2 or so wooden spoons, a set of silicon spatulas and nylon kitchen tools (that bag of black spoons etc for $5 is really worth it) a whisk.

ok you are good to go

that mixer or chopper or food processor etc are nice but get them as you really need them.

for your pots and pans: keep away from chef endorsed products. get thick walled heavy clad or anodized cookware. If you live near a restaurant supply company, pay em a visit...you will not be sorry...real one stop shopping ...no frills but real results.

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Old 08-06-2007, 02:19 PM   #22
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is swiss diamond a good company? I think i might buy some pots and pans from them...unless anyone has any objections.

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Old 08-06-2007, 02:23 PM   #23
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Cast iron is cast iron, imo. I bought my cast-iron grill pan at a local garden store that also sells milk and veggies from local producers. There's a thread on knives: Recommendations on good chef knives?

I also have a 3-piece set of cast iron pans - I've had them so long, I don't remember where I got them :-)
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Old 08-06-2007, 02:56 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by krnxguhj33
oh also..what's the difference between a high quality nonstick pan and a cast iron pan..?
Nonstick pans are sealed and have no pores so when searing or caramelizing the crust stays with the food and not the pan. Since they are nonstick, food slips away from them easily and they are a breeze to clean up.

Well seasoned cast iron can also be “nonstick” as long as you develop a good seasoning on the pan. Cleaning a well seasoned pan is fairly easy as well since you only use hot water (no soap) and a towel....or just salt and a towel.

When it comes to non-stick, the quality and price range is immense.

There are cheap pans that work.

There are inexpensive pans.

There are expensive pans.

And there are over-the-top pans.

The quality of the pan will determine how well it performs for various cooking tasks. Thick, even layered, multi-ply bottoms will distribute heat evenly (no hot spots or cold spot) and maintain their heat better than thinner, less expensive pans.

Personally, I don’t use a lot of nonstick as I prefer my stainless steel or cast iron sets for most of my cooking. However, I do have a cheap set of nonstick from Wal-Mart for little things like fried eggs, grilled cheese sandwiches, pancakes, etc. They might be cheap, but they do their part perfectly.
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Old 08-06-2007, 07:07 PM   #25
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Aren't cast iron pots a hassle to season after you use them and nonsticks easier to clean and cook with? Why does it seem that most cooks use a cast iron then..
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Old 08-06-2007, 07:12 PM   #26
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Cast iron is simple to season. You basically just need to wipe a small amount of Crisco on a warm pan then bake for an hour. That is it.

Cast iron is heavy and retains heat which is a very good property for certain types of cookware which is why cooks love to use the stuff.
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Old 08-06-2007, 07:18 PM   #27
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I looooove my cast-iron pans. I don't even know how many I have. But, once seasoned, they are fabulous to cook with. I have one very deep skillet I use to fry chicken, etc. in that is about 100-years-old and it's my favorite. All I have to do is to wipe it out with a hot, damp cloth and dry and it's ready to go for its next task.

Every time cast-iron is used with grease/oil/fat, it gets a little more seasoned. After a while, a pan is almost like Teflon. Whoo, hoo!
"As a girl I had zero interest in the stove." - Julia Child
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Old 08-06-2007, 08:11 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by krnxguhj33
Aren't cast iron pots a hassle to season after you use them and nonsticks easier to clean and cook with? Why does it seem that most cooks use a cast iron then..
If you look in the cookware forum, you should find several threads about use and care of cast iron.

Cast iron requires a little more care than a standard pan, but not much.

There is the initial seasoning after you purchase it. Remove the label, wash with warm soapy water, dry, then place on a burner and thoroughly dry it over heat (the pores in the metal will absorb the water and cause the pan to rust). Preheat the oven to 350, rub the pan down well with Crisco, and place the pan, upside-down, on a rack in the oven and bake for an hour.

After you cook with it, it's easiest to clean the pan while it's still warm. Clean with warm water (no soap, that will eat away at the seasoning). Dry on the heat, then rub down with a little Crisco. Allow the pan to cool.

A new cast iron pan will darken and build up the seasoning with time and use. I would recommend that the first several times you use it, do some pan-frying or deep-frying, as this helps build up the seasoning really well. Also, I would stay away from highly acidic foods, like tomato-based dishes, fruit, and wines, until the seasoning becomes good and thick.
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Old 08-06-2007, 10:38 PM   #29
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Hello Lodge Co. make the finest cast iron pans on the planet I have 3 of them in different sizes and I would not part with them.....They sell pre seasoned pans straight from the factory, and for what you get they are reasonable in $$$$$
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Old 08-06-2007, 11:36 PM   #30
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mmm, i see...SO. if my reading comprehension is good, i only need to season it well for a couple of times, then it's ready to go as long as i don't wash it with soap and water. And it retains heat well..i see..What's so important about retaining heat..?

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