"Discover Cooking, Discuss Life."

Go Back   Discuss Cooking - Cooking Forums > General Cooking Information > Cookware and Accessories > Cookware
Click Here to Login
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 02-08-2017, 09:15 AM   #1
Assistant Cook
 
sam90's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: London
Posts: 18
Frying Pan, Casserole Pan or Stock Pot?

Hi,

I've been looking into getting a complete new set of pots and pans for some time now, but I am having a bit of a problem deciding what sort of pans I need.

I'm looking at the Le Creuset 3-Ply Stainless Steel range as I love the look and have a load of John Lewis vouchers to use up.

I tend to cook a lot of curries, pasta, stir fry and casserole dishes, as well as meat dishes accompanied by boiled/steamed vegetables. I also love a fry up at the weekends as well as pancakes, omlettes.

I already know I am going to get the 4 Piece saucepan set which comes with a 16cm, 18cm, 20cm saucepan and a 24cm non-stick frying pan. I am also going to get the 24cm steel saute pan (un-coated) as I love to caramelise onions and saute veg.

I am torn, however, when deciding which large pan to get for cooking currys/spag-bol/resotto/stir-frys and other large dishes for the family. In the past I have always used a 28cm non stick frying pan with a lid for these dishes which has worked out well. However I am not sure if I should be using a casserole pan, or something more like a saucepan or stockpot, or if there is something else I have completely forgotten about. The Le Creuset 3-Ply range currently offers:
  • 28cm or 30cm Frying Pan (non-stick)
  • 26cm or 30cm Steel Casserole Pan (non non-stick)
  • 24cm Steel Casserole Stock Pot (non non-stick)

I guess I'm trying to find which is the most versatile large pan which will cater for my needs of cooking large meals in, but am not sure which it is!

Thank you in advance.

sam90 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-08-2017, 09:45 AM   #2
Chef Extraordinaire
 
GotGarlic's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Southeastern Virginia
Posts: 24,888
Hi and welcome to Discuss Cooking

I use my sauté pan for stir-fries and risotto and some sauces, as well as some braised dishes.

For larger batches of soups, stews, braises and curries, I suggest either a braiser or a Dutch oven. I only use my stockpot for stock and large batches of sauces like lasagna sauce - sort of like spag bol, I guess lol

http://www.lecreuset.com/cookware/braisers

http://www.lecreuset.com/cookware/dutch-ovens

I would also suggest that you stay away from sets, except that saucepan set you mentioned. You usually end up getting a bunch of pans you rarely use. You're better off buying individual items that you know you will use.

I would also suggest not getting non-stick, with the exception of a pan for eggs. The bits that stick are called fond. It adds great flavor to food when it's scraped and dissolved into sauces
__________________
Anyplace where people argue about food is a good place.
~ Anthony Bourdain, Parts Unknown, 2018
GotGarlic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-08-2017, 10:04 AM   #3
Assistant Cook
 
sam90's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: London
Posts: 18
Thank's for the welcome, and also for the reply!

The braiser that you have linked looks to me as the equivalent Casserole Pan in the UK, see the link. That seems to be more towards what I will use rather than a dutch oven. I do most of my cooking on the hob in relatively short time and all in one go such as cooking the meat and veg then adding the sauce till it simmers all in the same pan on the hob. It's vary rare that I would leave something to cook for hours on end, the times that I am organised to do that I would use either a small slow cooker or large pyrex bowl with a lid in the oven.

(https://www.lecreuset.co.uk/signatur...attribute=2968)

I am in the UK and am aware that the pans available in the ranges differ slightly from the US to the UK.

With regards to sticking to one set, I don't mind not getting all the same set, but if the range offers everything I need then I'd rather stick to it than have mis-matching pans.
sam90 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2017, 12:49 AM   #4
Master Chef
 
caseydog's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Dallas
Posts: 5,642
I'm curious, if the 28cm non-stick pan you have now works well for your big family dishes, why change pans? There is a saying here in the US, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it."

I tend to add pans to the ones I have that work, and only get rid of one's I don't like, or never use. I got rid of my tri-ply stainless skillets, because I found myself using either my non-stcick restaurant supply skillets, or my cast iron skillets instead. My LeCreuset cast iron dutch ovens get a constant work out, too. But, my daily "go-to" pans are some non-stick skillets I got at the local restaurant supply store for relatively cheap.

A few stainless sauce pans of different sizes are very handy. Mine are All-Clad, and I use them a lot. Buying "sets" of pans can be more cost effective, as long as you are pretty sure you will use almost everything in the set. You just need to weigh the cost of the set vs the cost of the pieces you really want purchased separately.

CD
__________________
“People say nothing is impossible, but I do nothing every day.” Winnie-the-Pooh
caseydog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2017, 03:25 AM   #5
Assistant Cook
 
sam90's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: London
Posts: 18
It needs replacing as the non stick is coming off, and it is warped beyond measure to the point that the lid falls off wen placed on it. The reason for wanting a whole new set is because I have very little cookware at all, just that, a saucepan and a small frying pan which is also warped and flaking. Hence why I tend to cook everything in the large frying pan.

You're one of the first people I've seen on here who prefers their non-stick skillets to stainless, everyone else seems to favour the stainless for the fonds.

Maybe I should be looking to get a Dutch oven instead then? I'm not quite sure what one is, or what it's used for and how to use it? Do you put it on the hub or in the oven? How long does it usually take to cook up a meal?
sam90 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2017, 04:47 AM   #6
Master Chef
 
caseydog's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Dallas
Posts: 5,642
Quote:
Originally Posted by sam90 View Post
It needs replacing as the non stick is coming off, and it is warped beyond measure to the point that the lid falls off wen placed on it. The reason for wanting a whole new set is because I have very little cookware at all, just that, a saucepan and a small frying pan which is also warped and flaking. Hence why I tend to cook everything in the large frying pan.

You're one of the first people I've seen on here who prefers their non-stick skillets to stainless, everyone else seems to favour the stainless for the fonds.

Maybe I should be looking to get a Dutch oven instead then? I'm not quite sure what one is, or what it's used for and how to use it? Do you put it on the hub or in the oven? How long does it usually take to cook up a meal?
Ah, if the pan is worn out, by all means, replace it.

If I am browning meat, or otherwise want to develop a fond, I use my cast-iron. But, for other things, the non-stick works. If I want to make a grilled cheese sandwich, or whip up some bacon and eggs, the non-stick works fine, and I can wash it, dry it and put it away in about 30 seconds.

A dutch oven can be used stove-top or in the oven, or both for some slow-cook recipes where you start off on the stove-top, browning and developing that fond, and then move to the oven to slowly braise.

For me, I find a cast iron dutch oven to be very versatile, and an essential item in my kitchen. If I were allowed only one pan/pot for the rest of my life, a dutch oven would be it.

All of my comments in this thread, BTW, are just a reflection of what works for me, worked out over 20 years of trial and error in the kitchen. I now have an eclectic collection of cookware that I feel comfortable, and confident using.

CD
__________________
“People say nothing is impossible, but I do nothing every day.” Winnie-the-Pooh
caseydog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2017, 11:18 AM   #7
Chef Extraordinaire
 
GotGarlic's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Southeastern Virginia
Posts: 24,888
This is a Le Creuset enameled cast iron Dutch oven, in the color I happen to have

Click image for larger version

Name:	flamedutchoven.jpg
Views:	201
Size:	24.3 KB
ID:	26144

They come in several sizes and colors. For my family - just DH and me - the 5.5-quart size works great for soups, stews and braised meats. How long something takes to cook depends on what it is. These are great for long, slow cooking.
__________________
Anyplace where people argue about food is a good place.
~ Anthony Bourdain, Parts Unknown, 2018
GotGarlic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2017, 05:44 PM   #8
Head Chef
 
Zagut's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Friendship,MD.
Posts: 1,298
Quote:
Originally Posted by caseydog View Post
There is a saying here in the US, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it."
And I'll agree with that 100%.

But I'm a cheapskate and hate to see anything that can be used discarded.


Quote:
Originally Posted by caseydog View Post
Ah, if the pan is worn out, by all means, replace it.

Again I agree. Everything has a useful service life and when the time comes we all gotta go sometime.


I now have an eclectic collection of cookware that I feel comfortable, and confident using.

This is sound advice and matches the cookware I've accumulated over the years.

You've asked a question only you can answer.
Get what fit's "your" needs and only you know what they are.
Run any and all suggestion through your filter and then buy what you feel is what you need for the results desired.

That being said, I'm not a big fan of nonstick.
I've never really seen the need for it since most pans can be nonstick if cared for properly and care is taken in preparation methods.
All nonstick pans wear out or should I say the coating wears out. You need to watch out for the utensils used with them and the temps you cook with.
But without the coating a pan can take a beating and keep on ticking. That's why I like my older pot's and pan's. They let me abuse them some and survive for another day.

Best of luck in your search and I'm sure you'll get what you seek.
And remember that every day is a learning experience.
Zagut is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2017, 06:12 PM   #9
Master Chef
 
caseydog's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Dallas
Posts: 5,642
Quote:
Originally Posted by GotGarlic View Post
This is a Le Creuset enameled cast iron Dutch oven, in the color I happen to have

Attachment 26144

They come in several sizes and colors. For my family - just DH and me - the 5.5-quart size works great for soups, stews and braised meats. How long something takes to cook depends on what it is. These are great for long, slow cooking.
I have the same color... Flame. I live near a LeCreuset outlet store, so over the years, I've acquired three sizes of the dutch ovens for relatively cheap. I use all of them pretty regularly.

CD
__________________
“People say nothing is impossible, but I do nothing every day.” Winnie-the-Pooh
caseydog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2017, 08:49 PM   #10
Executive Chef
 
dragnlaw's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Montreal
Posts: 4,386
Nobody has given any bad advice on this thread!! LOL

Please also keep in mind pans (or pots for that matter) that have oven friendly handles (and lids) are wonderful. Yes, metal handles and lids do get hot but to be able to slide something into the oven to finish up is a definite plus!

Did a recipe yesterday that said to use a casserole dish for in the oven and then switch to a stovetop pan to finish the sauce... duh... started in an oven safe saute pan and finished it in the same pan - one less dish to wash!
__________________
Meddle not in the affairs of dragons for you are crunchy and taste good with ketchup.
dragnlaw is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2017, 08:55 PM   #11
Master Chef
 
caseydog's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Dallas
Posts: 5,642
Quote:
Originally Posted by dragnlaw View Post
Nobody has given any bad advice on this thread!! LOL
I guess I need to stop now, while I'm ahead.

CD
__________________
“People say nothing is impossible, but I do nothing every day.” Winnie-the-Pooh
caseydog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-10-2017, 05:38 AM   #12
Assistant Cook
 
sam90's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: London
Posts: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by caseydog View Post
I guess I need to stop now, while I'm ahead.

CD
You're right, this is way more information that I anticipated, thank you all! I'm going to have a look at some of those dutch ovens and see what they are all about, they sound amazing and the thought of braising my meat and then leaving it to stew for hours makes me salivate.

I think I am still going to go for the saucepan set with a small non-stick frying pan (24cm) to do my eggs and pancakes in. Then I will have to keep an eye out for a larger stainless steel frying pan, brasier or saute pan to cook the majority of my quick (under an hour) meals in. I tend to cook these meals in bulk so I have left overs for work for the next few days so I'd ideally get a 30cm pan.

Other than that, I think I will be set for the time being, maybe a small 24cm saute pan to caramalize and get my fonds for when I'm cooking a smaller meal.

How does that sound?
sam90 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-10-2017, 06:56 AM   #13
Master Chef
 
caseydog's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Dallas
Posts: 5,642
Quote:
Originally Posted by sam90 View Post
You're right, this is way more information that I anticipated, thank you all! I'm going to have a look at some of those dutch ovens and see what they are all about, they sound amazing and the thought of braising my meat and then leaving it to stew for hours makes me salivate.

I think I am still going to go for the saucepan set with a small non-stick frying pan (24cm) to do my eggs and pancakes in. Then I will have to keep an eye out for a larger stainless steel frying pan, brasier or saute pan to cook the majority of my quick (under an hour) meals in. I tend to cook these meals in bulk so I have left overs for work for the next few days so I'd ideally get a 30cm pan.

Other than that, I think I will be set for the time being, maybe a small 24cm saute pan to caramalize and get my fonds for when I'm cooking a smaller meal.

How does that sound?
I think the saucepan set sounds like a very good choice, and the non-stick frying pan is a good utility pan for those quick meals we all make to fit our schedules.

I also think you are wise to buy a few things at a time, and incorporate them into your cooking one step at a time. Then you can ask yourself, "What do I want to do, that I am not able to do with what I have?" Hopefully you won't have to give away as much kitchen $tuff as I did in assembling what I have now.

Do some YouTube searches on dutch oven cooking. It will give you an idea what you can do with them. I mentioned starting on the stove-top, and moving to the oven to slow cook. Here is a video -- part of a series that Michael Ruhlmann did for Le Creuset -- where he uses a dutch oven to do a slow cook starting on the stove-top, and finishing in the oven.




CD
__________________
“People say nothing is impossible, but I do nothing every day.” Winnie-the-Pooh
caseydog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-10-2017, 11:57 AM   #14
Assistant Cook
 
sam90's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: London
Posts: 18
That video was great, I've watched a few of them now, including one where he sautes some medallions in a pan with red wine. That looked yummy!
sam90 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-10-2017, 02:53 PM   #15
Executive Chef
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: New Hampshire Seacoast
Posts: 2,510
Quote:
Originally Posted by sam90 View Post
You're right, this is way more information that I anticipated, thank you all! I'm going to have a look at some of those dutch ovens and see what they are all about, they sound amazing and the thought of braising my meat and then leaving it to stew for hours makes me salivate........

.....Then I will have to keep an eye out for a larger stainless steel frying pan, brasier or saute pan to cook the majority of my quick (under an hour) meals in.
For a working person who wants to cook a meal in under an hour, you might want to consider a pressure cooker. Modern electric pressure cookers, like an Instant Pot, are set and forget appliances. Set the timer, hit the start button, and wait for it to finish. And they cook much, much faster than a Dutch Oven.

Here's an article that covers some of the basics:

Why Anything Slow Cookers Can Do, Others Can Do Better | Serious Eats
tenspeed is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-10-2017, 08:33 PM   #16
Master Chef
 
caseydog's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Dallas
Posts: 5,642
^^^^^ Well now, there's another thing to add to your information overload.

I can't say much about pressure cookers, because I've never owned one -- so far.

CD
__________________
“People say nothing is impossible, but I do nothing every day.” Winnie-the-Pooh
caseydog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-11-2017, 03:39 AM   #17
Chef Extraordinaire
 
Cooking Goddess's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Body in MA ~ Heart in OH
Posts: 14,096
Quote:
Originally Posted by caseydog View Post
...because I've never owned one -- so far.

CD
Keep coming around here and you're sure to acquire all sorts of kitchen toys you never even considered pre-DC. A lot of us like to collect. *ducks head down - raises hand*
__________________
“You shouldn’t wait to be senile before you become eccentric.”— Helene Truter

"Remember, all that matters in the end is getting the meal on the table." ~ Julia Child
Cooking Goddess is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-11-2017, 04:05 AM   #18
Master Chef
 
caseydog's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Dallas
Posts: 5,642
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cooking Goddess View Post
Keep coming around here and you're sure to acquire all sorts of kitchen toys you never even considered pre-DC. A lot of us like to collect. *ducks head down - raises hand*
I kick the idea around from time to time, but my kitchen is full now. When I got divorced, I sold the Dallas suburbanite "minimal" house -- big enough for two normal families -- and built a 1,620 square foot house. The kitchen is wonderful (mostly), but not big. If I get a pressure cooker, I'll have to get rid of something else to make room for it. That is a rule I've made for myself.

So, the pressure cooker has not yet justified getting rid of something else.

CD
__________________
“People say nothing is impossible, but I do nothing every day.” Winnie-the-Pooh
caseydog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-11-2017, 09:32 AM   #19
Chef Extraordinaire
 
jennyema's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Boston and Cape Cod
Posts: 10,128
Quote:
Originally Posted by tenspeed View Post
For a working person who wants to cook a meal in under an hour, you might want to consider a pressure cooker. Modern electric pressure cookers, like an Instant Pot, are set and forget appliances. Set the timer, hit the start button, and wait for it to finish. And they cook much, much faster than a Dutch Oven.

Here's an article that covers some of the basics:

Why Anything Slow Cookers Can Do, Others Can Do Better | Serious Eats
Instapots rock!! I love mine!!
__________________
Less is not more. More is more and more is fabulous.
jennyema is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-2017, 04:03 PM   #20
Head Chef
 
Zagut's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Friendship,MD.
Posts: 1,298
Quote:
Originally Posted by caseydog View Post
I kick the idea around from time to time, but my kitchen is full now. When I got divorced, I sold the Dallas suburbanite "minimal" house -- big enough for two normal families -- and built a 1,620 square foot house. The kitchen is wonderful (mostly), but not big. If I get a pressure cooker, I'll have to get rid of something else to make room for it. That is a rule I've made for myself.

So, the pressure cooker has not yet justified getting rid of something else.

CD
Well ya know........ Somewhere I heard that rules were made to be broken.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tenspeed View Post
For a working person who wants to cook a meal in under an hour, you might want to consider a pressure cooker. Modern electric pressure cookers, like an Instant Pot, are set and forget appliances. Set the timer, hit the start button, and wait for it to finish. And they cook much, much faster than a Dutch Oven.

Here's an article that covers some of the basics:

Why Anything Slow Cookers Can Do, Others Can Do Better | Serious Eats
Thanks for the nice link.
A Crock Pot defiantly leaves something to be desired but the price points in the article show why the Crock Pot sells so well.
Zagut is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
casserole, frying pan, le creuset, new pans, saucepan, stock, stock pot

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:42 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.