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Old 05-16-2020, 04:01 AM   #1
Assistant Cook
Join Date: May 2020
Location: LA
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Any Recommendations for best 14 inch carbon steel wok?

as discussed in another forum, im not happy with my wok. seems like its getting worse and worse. i might have just gotten a cheap one, an Imusa.

any recommendations from anyone who loves their wok? preferably one i can buy online, like at amazon, thanks!

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Old 05-16-2020, 08:19 AM   #2
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I own this wok - https://www.letgo.com/en-us/i/vintag...d-98770cd69dca, and use it frequently. Mine is well seasoned from many years of usd. It is as, non-stick as any teflon pans I own. It is fairly heavy though. I have used it for making sauces, boiling tings, deep frying, stir-frying, and steaming foods. The little rack that comes with it is handy as it allows me to drain deep-fried foods back into the wok after they are done. The only caveat is that the handle, like on all of my handles that are attached either with screws, or are screwed in, need to be checked for tightness ow and again.

I have been using my Atlas Fltat Bottom Wok for over 20 years no. I have not babied it. It'''s seen some abuse. And it still works like new. Check it out.

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Old 05-16-2020, 10:12 AM   #3
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I think that Atlas wok is the one I got, back in '84, when I set up my kitchen! And it has probably cooked cooked more dishes than any other pan in my collection, and is still going strong. The main thing you want to check is how the handle feels to you - as with any pan, the angle it is at can be awkward, depending on your height, but it is especially important with a wok, so you have to check it out in the store, using something the height of your range, or as soon as you get it if it was ordered.

A friend got a wok one time that had a problem - the handles were attached with rivets, and the lid did not set well, as a result. Something to check for, as the lid needs to seal well, for steaming.
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Old 05-16-2020, 10:16 AM   #4
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I seem to recall you were unhappy with your wok due to sticking. But you did not go in to any detail about how you season it. There is a lot of instruction online on how to do this, but my experience over the years has been the advice is either incomplete or just plain wrong.

Here is what I do to season carbon steel and cast iron:

1.) Cook with it using a high temp oil (I usually use canola).

2.) After serving your meal, set the pan aside to cool (If I made dinner, I usually let it sit out overnight).

3.) Use a paper towel or two to wipe out the excess oil and any bits of fond. It it is really stuck on, warm the pan and use a brush or scrubbing sponge. Avoid using water if possible (if you must use water see footnote below).

4.) Use a dry rag (I usually use an old T-shirt) and buff off any oil and rub all over the pan (inside and out). It is imperative to remove as much oil as possible as you want a VERY thin layer. If you can see it or even feel it, it is too thick and will just get gummy (and sticky).

5.) Place the pan upside down in the oven and turn the heat to 400°F and leave for 2 hours. Then turn the oven off, leaving the pan in until cool to the touch. This accomplishes two things… it kills any bacteria that might have been present in the used oil, and it polymerizes the oil to form a non-stick coating.

FOOTNOTE: If you used water, dry the pan upside down in a 300°F oven. When dry and cool enough to handle, drizzle a small amount of oil in the inside of the pan, distribute with a paper towel, and then follow steps 4 and 5 above.

Again I can't stress enough that a thicker coat of oil does not make for faster seasoning. It in fact ruins it and you'll have to clean it all out and start from scratch. And if your wok's current seasoning is shiny, gummy, or has an uneven, vinyl like texture, you'll need to scrub it all out with hot soapy water before re-embarking on this seasoning ritual.

The steps above literally take 2 minutes (less time than washing/drying it), and should be done each time you cook with the pan. Plus, if you have a timed bake feature on your oven, you just set it for 2 hours at 400° and forget it.

After a half dozen meals, you will have a beautifully seasoned pan, and it will only get better after every use.
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Old 05-16-2020, 10:16 AM   #5
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Old 05-21-2020, 03:17 AM   #6
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Join Date: May 2020
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thanks all for your responses. yes, i did season the wok. i did pretty much what you said with some variation. my wok has wooden handles, so i didnt put in oven, just on stove.

first i washed it with soap and water to get the manufacturer coating off. then heated on stove with a thin layer of canola oil. i used tongs and a paper towel to rub the oil all around. i shifted the wok to catch all the edges, hoping it would turn and change colors. then i proceeded to cook scallions, ginger, and garlic with some oil for 15 min, then threw it out. i cleaned it with some warm water and a brush, no soap. i didnt let the water soak in, just to rinse off the gunk. then i put on the stove at high heat to dry water off. turned heat lower and put oil and used tongs again to rub a thin layer on the wok all over. let it sit there dry.

when i cook food, i heat up, apply some oil, cook food. then rinse off leftover gunk with brush and warm water. then heat on stove to dry water off, and rub with oil. repeat over and over.
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