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Old 12-09-2008, 12:53 AM   #1
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Newbie here; looking for some cookware assistance

Hello all,

So ive been researching what set to buy for quite some time now and have decided on Anolon since its seems to be the best deal for the money.

There are currently two sets available from Anolon: the "Advanced" which has see through lids and rubber handles and the "Titanium" which has Stainless/Titanium lids and aluminum handles.

The latter is definitely more attractive to me, although im thinking I might want the glass lids?

Being that I know very little about what I will eventually need from my cookware, can anyone give me the pros and cons of each set or maybe offer some advice as to which one to buy?

Thanks!

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Old 12-09-2008, 12:58 AM   #2
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My SS set has glass lids and copper bottoms, and I am very happy I have the glass lids on em. If the rubber handles keep the handles from getting to hot to touch (as mine do) then that is another plus.
Other things things to consider would be cast iron pans and copper pans. Each has its own uses, and as you cook more and more you will get a better idea of what you would like and need, but SS is a good place to start out.
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Old 12-09-2008, 01:03 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Maverick2272 View Post
My SS set has glass lids and copper bottoms, and I am very happy I have the glass lids on em. If the rubber handles keep the handles from getting to hot to touch (as mine do) then that is another plus.
Other things things to consider would be cast iron pans and copper pans. Each has its own uses, and as you cook more and more you will get a better idea of what you would like and need, but SS is a good place to start out.
Thanks for the reply.
I have tried SS in the past and it always...well-stains.
Is that because I didnt buy a good enough brand?
I can stand that orange/brown staining that occurs on the bottoms.
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Old 12-09-2008, 01:07 AM   #4
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If it gets dark stains or dimples on the inside that's bad. It has to either be thrown out or resurfaces. If it is copper bottom and you get the orange or brown stains on it, then you can use a good copper cleaner and scrub it all clean again. Me, I don't worry about much until it gets almost black, then I clean it up.
If there is no copper on the bottom, well then I am not sure what the staining would mean, but someone will be along that knows more about that than I.
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Old 12-09-2008, 01:21 AM   #5
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Yesterday I used a stainless skillet for the first time in ... Years? A very long time.

I use copper clad stainless pans regularly. I don't think about or notice the discoloration of the copper, keeping the copper shiny is too much like work, and I think it makes no difference in how well the pan works.

Thing about buying sets is you could buy a set of good cookware and find it doesn't work for you at all. Or you may get one piece of iron from a thrift store and like it so much you start a collection.

This probably didn't help.
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Old 12-09-2008, 01:27 AM   #6
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Yesterday I used a stainless skillet for the first time in ... Years? A very long time.

I use copper clad stainless pans regularly. I don't think about or notice the discoloration of the copper, keeping the copper shiny is too much like work, and I think it makes no difference in how well the pan works.

Thing about buying sets is you could buy a set of good cookware and find it doesn't work for you at all. Or you may get one piece of iron from a thrift store and like it so much you start a collection.

This probably didn't help.
LOL-it didnt-but you made me laugh nonetheless, so it was worth it
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Old 12-09-2008, 03:27 AM   #7
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The first choice is non-stick or stainless steel interior.

If you want non-stick I'm not the man to give you advice because I never have and never will use non-stick.

From there there are certain features that I consider to be very desirable, although you may not find all features on one set of pans.
1) Glass lids. Lets you see how the cooking is going without opening the lid
2) Metal handles. Lets you go from the stovetop to the oven or grill. Panroasting is one of the most useful cooking techniques and no matter how they advertise it plastic handles don't cope with the transfer anywhere near as well as metal handles.
3) Thick metal. The thicker the metal the better the heat retention and transfer and less susceptibility to hot spots.

The most important decision then is the metal. The short version is:
Cast Iron: Heavy, slow to heat and cool, excellent heat retention. Needs to be seasoned.
Copper: Heavy, fast to heat and cool, excellent for adjusting heat through the cooking. High maintenance to keep looking good.
Stainless Steel: Relatively poor conductor so you can get hot and cool spots. The worst performer in terms of cooking. The easiest to clean and keep clean.
Aluminium: Good conductor. Light. Susceptible to warping. Not the easiest to clean.
Fusion: Usually a SS interior with a sandwich of aluminium, steel and/or copper. You get the advantage of the SS practicality for cleaning and the benefit of the better cooking properties of aluminium or copper. IMO unless you want to spend serious money on copper or cast iron the best choice.
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Old 12-09-2008, 04:51 AM   #8
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One of the best investments you will ever make for your kitchen, is Alton Brown's book "Gear for Your Kitchen". For me it's the Bible I go to when I want to purchase kitchen stuff. He covers everything in such detail, he must have 10 pages just on metals used in cookware. At $17.95, it's one of the cheapest things you'll ever purchase for the kitchen.
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Old 12-09-2008, 07:43 AM   #9
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Personally, I'm not a fan of glass lids. I have a lot of family and guests who use my kitchen and not all of them are as careful as they should be. Over time, there's too much possibility of breaking glass lids. I'd go for the set with the stainless lids.

For cleaning, I recommend Barkeepers Friend. I use the powder, not the liquid.
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Old 12-09-2008, 11:10 AM   #10
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I don't think they make the Titanium line anymore.

I recommend SS and metal lids.

Barkeepers Friend will get rid of most stains on SS.
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Old 12-09-2008, 11:30 AM   #11
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How I cook and how you cook are two different things. Not only are our recipes likely different, but what we think is important in cookware performance may also be worlds apart.

That said, my advice to anyone looking for cookware is that while sets often offer a good price, do you need and will you use all pieces in the set? Would a variety of different pans serve you better? And also give you the info needed to make the choice of a few more of this one type here rather than that one there??

just some things to think about. btw, Analon is a well respected company.
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Old 12-09-2008, 11:53 AM   #12
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I would not recommend going whole hog for one type of cookware. For one thing if it disappoints you are stuck with the whole set. Also different materials perform better at different tasks.... jpaul gave you that run down pretty well

Personally I don't like non-stick... it gets icky and requires way to much being careful for me... also once its shot its usless and it has a definitle lifespan no matter how careful you are.

If I were to break things down though I would go with the following for a base

SS sauce pans & a stock pot (aluminum disk or for $$$ core like all clad)
A enameled Cast Iron dutch oven... maybe 2 a medium and a big
A few types of skillets... non stick, SS and Cast Iron
A Saute pan of your choosing.


Rather than buy a set I would just shop the racks at stores like TJ maxx or department stores you should be able to get good deals on separate pieces and you will have a more varied and interesting set of tools at hand... .also if you don't like a certain item... replace it! You don't have to replace a whole set. I wouldn't worry too much about brands.. they are tricky anyway because they all have so many lines... look at the construction the handles see if they feel solid and sturdy in your hand

More to the point of your original question I do have some cookware with the rubber handles and glass lids I find I like them although I was hesitant when I bought them.

A little BKF and some scotchbrite or steel wool will go along way to keeping your SS clean.
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Old 12-09-2008, 12:40 PM   #13
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Hello Kwitel!
Jennyema is correct. Anolon Titanium has been discontinued. If you want to add to your Anolon set, Advanced is your best bet. I have Anolon Advanced and love the glass lids and silicone handles. Excellent quality nonstick pans for a great price.
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Old 12-09-2008, 12:54 PM   #14
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Well-it looks like stainless is the way to go and maybe ill buy some non-stick pans to go with it?

Is it really a big deal to have glass lids? I find you cant see through the steam anyways...

What do you guys think of the Anolon Chef-Clad set here?:

(ugh-I cant post links yet-its the Chef Clad SS set by Anolon at Amazon for 299)
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Old 12-09-2008, 01:23 PM   #15
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Hello Kwitel!
Jennyema is correct. Anolon Titanium has been discontinued. If you want to add to your Anolon set, Advanced is your best bet. I have Anolon Advanced and love the glass lids and silicone handles. Excellent quality nonstick pans for a great price.
Thanks for the reply Cathleen.

When cooking, do the lids stay clear? Thats my major concern.
Also, I worry about the silicone handles in the oven.
The Titanium set (which is available on Ebay and some other closeout shops) has SS tops and SS handles.
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Old 12-09-2008, 01:52 PM   #16
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Hi, I have not had an issue with the glass lids staying clear. Glass lids vs stainless steel lids is an issue of personal preference. Both do the job! If you are not concerned about adding to your Titanium set, then for sure take advantage of the closout prices!
FYI - Silicone handles are safe in the oven up to 400.
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Old 01-12-2009, 11:03 PM   #17
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I am kitchen gadget girl and I love anything that could make my kitchen life easier. My cookwares are my priceless possession. FencaPerlitas is right, I am too is a no longer fan of glass lids, thinking that my not so careful guest could just break it.:-)
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Old 01-13-2009, 07:36 PM   #18
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I don't think that glass lids are important, but I also almost never use lids on skillets of sautee pans. I agree with PanchoHambre that your best bet is an assortment of pans.

I have 1 calphalon saucepan that's nonstick (I use it for rice and... well, lots of stuff!)
1 medium enamel coated CI dutch oven
1 ENORMOUS CI dutch oven that I almost never use
1 5 gallon stock pot - SS with a copper bottom
3 CI pans that I use all the time
1 nonstick pan that I use rarely
1 SS pan (SS calphalon tri-ply) that I use when I need a HUGE sautee/skillet or I'm making something acidic and can't use the CI

IMO, I'd buy a cast iron skillet (try to get an old one with a smooth inside), a medium saucepan, a HUGE SS sautee, and a dutch oven to start. You'll be able to pick and choose your stuff and not waste money on stuff you'll never use.
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Old 01-13-2009, 09:19 PM   #19
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1 ENORMOUS CI dutch oven that I almost never use

but I bet you wouldn't part with it for the world... because when the time comes the sucker is there and nothing else will do the job

out of curiosity... how big is enormous?
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Old 01-13-2009, 09:51 PM   #20
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I like the assortment Pancho Hambre suggested......except I hate non-stick skillets/pans. I won't have them in my house.

I like copper saucepans and saute pans. I leave the stainless steel for stockpots.
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