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Old 09-18-2013, 02:56 PM   #1
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Best pot/pan for reducing stir time and preventing scorching

l'd like some suggestions/advice on what would be the best pan/pot to buy to help keep the chore of constantly stirring a pot/pan that has a milk product in it using my cheap electric (sigh) stove that came with my apartment. (Or any other recipe that needs long stirring.)

For instance---- making rice/tapioca pudding.
I do use a flame tamer.
Heavy bottom?
Stainless is best for me.

I know that I could use a double boiler----- but doesn't that take a long time? And still need watching?
Maybe use a slow cooker? But I'd really rather cook at the stove.

Any ideas welcome.
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Old 09-18-2013, 03:02 PM   #2
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Cooking a milk based food is going to be problematic. A heavy-bottomed SS pot is best. Either one with a layered disk on the bottom or a tri-ply SS sandwich to even out the heat distribution. A flame tamer does that also.

A combination of low heat and stirring is still the best solution. This in combination with the right pan will minimize your issues.
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Old 09-18-2013, 03:23 PM   #3
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I agree with Andy.

Some foods that have milk can be microwaved. I find it usually works even better than a double boiler.
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Old 09-18-2013, 03:34 PM   #4
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Thanks to you both---- and Andy M, it sounds as if you're in concert with me ----"problematic'. Sigh. Where's my maid when I need her?

Taxlady------ I've always had the worst luck in trying to microwave stuff like milk in the MW---- I must not have 'your touch'. Boil-overs to the nth degree. And hominy grits that have boiled over!!!!!!!!! Just like concrete on the walls of the MW.
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Old 09-18-2013, 05:40 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cave76 View Post
Thanks to you both---- and Andy M, it sounds as if you're in concert with me ----"problematic'. Sigh. Where's my maid when I need her?

Taxlady------ I've always had the worst luck in trying to microwave stuff like milk in the MW---- I must not have 'your touch'. Boil-overs to the nth degree. And hominy grits that have boiled over!!!!!!!!! Just like concrete on the walls of the MW.
Yup, boil overs are easy. Turn down the power and nuke for one minute at a time. If it's a large amount you could start with more time. It does need a bit of baby sitting, but not as much as stirring. When you think it is nearing the boiling point, keep an eye on it through the window. I have never been able to do stuff with a lot of milk on the stove without it leaving a layer of cooked milk stuck to the pot, even with a double boiler. That doesn't happen in the microwave.
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Old 09-18-2013, 05:59 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cave76 View Post
l'd like some suggestions/advice on what would be the best pan/pot to buy to help keep the chore of constantly stirring a pot/pan that has a milk product in it using my cheap electric (sigh) stove that came with my apartment. (Or any other recipe that needs long stirring.)

For instance---- making rice/tapioca pudding.
I do use a flame tamer.
Heavy bottom?
Stainless is best for me.

I know that I could use a double boiler----- but doesn't that take a long time? And still need watching?
Maybe use a slow cooker? But I'd really rather cook at the stove.

Any ideas welcome.
If milk puddings - sago, rice, tapioca - then why not cook it in a low oven for a couple of hours. I've never cooked rice pudding on the hob. If you cook it in the oven you get a lovely brow topping on the cooked pudd. Dad and I used to squabble over whose turn it was to eat it

(Don't do tapioca and sago. We always called them "frog spawn" at school and it felt like it in your mouth.)
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Old 09-18-2013, 09:19 PM   #7
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I have a round piece of iron about 1" thick that fits on my burner that sort of works for things like that over a low flame. My husband made it for me in the machine shop. Sorry I can't give you a brand name. I still give a stir now and then.
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Old 09-19-2013, 10:11 AM   #8
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mad cook---- you said "why not cook it in a low oven for a couple of hours."-------that would certainly work, but not for an impulse eater like me. LOL Yes, tapioca IS a bit like frog spawn----- so I guess you've never had Bubble Tea! But I like them both.

oldvine: that piece of iron might work even better than my cheap-o flame tamer. Still, it would have to have a long heat up time first. But maybe I'll try that. Maybe Lodge Logic makes one.

Just remembered something I used to have ----- a ceramic disc about 1 inch thick and 3 inches across that was meant to be put in the bottom of a pot to keep 'things' from boiling over. So long ago that I don't remember if it actually worked or not. :(
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Old 09-20-2013, 05:36 PM   #9
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Just remembered something I used to have ----- a ceramic disc about 1 inch thick and 3 inches across that was meant to be put in the bottom of a pot to keep 'things' from boiling over. So long ago that I don't remember if it actually worked or not. :(
Co-incidence - I saw one of those advertised in one of those irritating little catalogues that come inside magazines. I don't know if they work either although I suspect they act as a warning - the boiling "things" probably make it rattle and draws your attention rather than actually preventing the boiling over.
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Old 09-20-2013, 05:48 PM   #10
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I vaguely recall a helpful hint of putting a small saucer in a pot to prevent boil overs.
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Old 09-20-2013, 07:43 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M. View Post
I vaguely recall a helpful hint of putting a small saucer in a pot to prevent boil overs.
Yeah, that seems to ring a bell.
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Old 09-21-2013, 09:34 AM   #12
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I vaguely recall a helpful hint of putting a small saucer in a pot to prevent boil overs.

Maybe we're onto something! :)

buy' ngop
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Old 09-21-2013, 09:45 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M. View Post
I vaguely recall a helpful hint of putting a small saucer in a pot to prevent boil overs.
Quote:
Originally Posted by cave76 View Post
Maybe we're onto something! :)

buy' ngop
I wonder if that would work in the microwave. I may give it a try.
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Old 09-21-2013, 10:02 AM   #14
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taxlady, If you try it in a MW would you report back to us (or to me, the less adventurous one?)
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Old 09-21-2013, 10:06 AM   #15
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Quote:
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taxlady, If you try it in a MW would you report back to us (or to me, the less adventurous one?)
Happy to, if I remember.
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Old 09-21-2013, 12:47 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cave76 View Post
l'd like some suggestions/advice on what would be the best pan/pot to buy to help keep the chore of constantly stirring a pot/pan that has a milk product in it using my cheap electric (sigh) stove that came with my apartment. (Or any other recipe that needs long stirring.)

For instance---- making rice/tapioca pudding.
I do use a flame tamer.
Heavy bottom?
Stainless is best for me.

I know that I could use a double boiler----- but doesn't that take a long time? And still need watching?
Maybe use a slow cooker? But I'd really rather cook at the stove.

Any ideas welcome.
I don't like stainless steel pans for milk-based recipes. However expensive they always seem to scorch. I have a non-stick aluminium pan that I save for milky things. I think you are stuck with standing over it if you heat it on the hob.

The double boiler would be OK. You'd need to check regularly to make sure it didn't boil dry but you'd be free to do other things in the kitchen. You're right, it'll take a long time. Likewise the slow cooker but you could go away and leave it.
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