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Old 05-26-2003, 09:35 PM   #1
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Non-Stick Pans - the perfect pan

well, NewGuy's post about his problems with his "stick" pan raises a question for me: What's so great about the stainless steel cookware? That's all I see "professional" chefs use, and while I've often dreamed about the 'perfect' cookware, I don't understand why non-stick doesn't fit the bill.
I have 2 cast iron skillets (one of them is about as wide as my oven!!) one non-stick 10" 'omelette' pan (which I use about 60% of the time), and an 8" non-stick saucepan. I have others, of course, but these are what I use 99.9% of the time. I love the non-stick pans because honestly, NOTHING sticks to them (and I've made some huge cooking "boo-boos"--usually while concentrating on pouring my next bourbon). What I love about the cast iron skillets is that for some reason, things seem to taste better when cooked in them. Could this somehow be true for stainless-steel cookware?

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Old 05-26-2003, 10:34 PM   #2
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Mmmmmmmm........... well, when I cook with my "stick" pans you get the bits of flavor that stick to the bottom and you can carmelize things IMHO much better. I deglaze a lot for flavor and in a non-stick pan that's not always possible.

How's that for taking a guess??? :roll:
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Old 05-27-2003, 10:36 AM   #3
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Didja notice the pro's on TV always use brand spankin' NEW stainless pans? (You can tell they're new by the plish marks on them when they pour in the oil, etc.). The new SS pans are vastly more photogenic!

No question but that foods somehow manage to taste better from a well seasoned cast iron skillet or dutch oven. And, when properly seasoned and properly used, even eggs don't stick in them! (I have a 6 inch cast iron skillet tat's almost as old as I, and cooks egs just fine, any way I want 'em. In butter, of course!

Non-stick works well for lots of stuff, however. Mostly for things Carnivore doesn't eat.
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Old 05-27-2003, 12:30 PM   #4
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I only just started using a non-stick pan, and I have to admit, I prefer using my regular old stainless-steel ones or cast iron. The non-stick is perfect for eggs, though, and making perfect crisp-fried potatoes without a lot of cleanup!
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Old 07-19-2004, 10:06 AM   #5
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Re: Non-Stick Pans - the perfect pan

Quote:
Originally Posted by carnivore
well, NewGuy's post about his problems with his "stick" pan raises a question for me: What's so great about the stainless steel cookware? That's all I see "professional" chefs use, and while I've often dreamed about the 'perfect' cookware, I don't understand why non-stick doesn't fit the bill.
I have 2 cast iron skillets (one of them is about as wide as my oven!!) one non-stick 10" 'omelette' pan (which I use about 60% of the time), and an 8" non-stick saucepan. I have others, of course, but these are what I use 99.9% of the time. I love the non-stick pans because honestly, NOTHING sticks to them (and I've made some huge cooking "boo-boos"--usually while concentrating on pouring my next bourbon). What I love about the cast iron skillets is that for some reason, things seem to taste better when cooked in them. Could this somehow be true for stainless-steel cookware?
try this link [link removed]
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Old 07-19-2004, 11:52 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Coco
I only just started using a non-stick pan, and I have to admit, I prefer using my regular old stainless-steel ones or cast iron. The non-stick is perfect for eggs, though, and making perfect crisp-fried potatoes without a lot of cleanup!
Try this site [link removed]
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Old 07-19-2004, 02:55 PM   #7
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There are a few reasons that SS is better than non stick for certain things.
Non stick is not supposed to be used with very high heat. Most non stick pan manufacturers recommend that you do not go about med high heat on the stove or about a certain temp in the oven (I forgot what temp that is though). The non stick coating starts to break down when high heat is used (it actually evaporates). The fumes from this evaporation has been known to kill small animals like birds although no one has ever been able to show any conclusive proof that it is bad for humans to my knowledge. That is why you should not heat your non stick pans without anything in them for too long. The need food or something to draw the heat away so the coating does not break down.
As kitchenelf already mentioned, sometime you DO want things to stick to your pan. The little yummy bits (fond) that stick after you cook meat are some of the yummiest parts and are used to make pan sauces. You will not get the same thing from a non stick pan.
Non stick pans will also not give you the same color than SS will. SS will give you are better browning affect, while non stick browning will be a bit more splotchy (for lack of a better word).
Now none of these reasons are major, so if you are happy with your non stick pans and the way they preform then do not get rid of them just because the professionals use something different. If it works for you and you are happy then that is all that matters.
When properly used, SS can be almost non stick. Make sure to heat the pan before putting anything in it, then heat the fat (and use enough fat) once the pan is hot. Put your food in and do NOT touch it for a minute or two. If you follow these few rules then most things will not stick.
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Old 07-22-2004, 04:41 AM   #8
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Re: Non-Stick Pans - the perfect pan

I also use the cast iron cookwares. I am a Chinese. Our village most use the cast iron cookwares. Our village have a factory that export the cast iron cookwares for cample and cooking , I have many cast iron cookwares in my living. I very like cooking use them. :P
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Old 07-28-2004, 04:37 PM   #9
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I have ruined many Non-Stick Pans using heat that is to high.

Non-Stick Evils Revealed

Evil number one is high heat. A lot of people, me included, like to use high heat settings with their non-stick cookware. That is an absolute no-no, you should never use high heat because the heat will reduce the effectiveness of the non-stick coating which means you'll have to throw that pan away in 6 to 7 months. You want to get a great pan with high weight, the heavier the pan the better the heat distribution and the longer the life of the pan.

Non-stick pan Evil number 2, is abrasion. Any pan you have that is non-stick, you don't want to be scratching it, or especially cutting food items with a knife because you'll cut through the non-stick coating and you might as well throw the pan away after that. For the best results you'll want to use nylon cooking utensil in any non-stick pan, that's going to dramatically lengthen the life of any non-stick pan.

Now the third axis of evil for non-stick pans is non-stick spray. I used to think it was ok to use just a squirt or two of non-stick spray even in a non-stick pan. You're not supposed to do that. If you have a quality non-stick pan do not use non-stick spray because it’s going to build up oils that can't get out of there and you're going to wind up throwing away your pan.

To protect against build up you want to clean your pan after every use and with a non-stick pan, that doesn't mean just wiping it off. You want to use soap and water and maybe a brush or a Scotch Bright pad.

Some of the latest generation non-stick pans are dishwasher safe. So you can put it in the dishwasher for the best cleaning of all. If you follow these steps, your pans will last you for years and years.
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Old 12-28-2005, 07:44 PM   #10
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Non-Stick Metal Taste??

Has anyone had the experience of your food tasting like the pan? Recently my meals have been ruined and I don't know why. I cook with non-stick pans and have had the same set for about two years. I was making scrambled eggs and they came out tasting like burnt metal. I thought maybe the set was cheap and my pan was ruined so I tried a non stick pan from a different set and had the same problem. Overall, three of my pans have proven to ruin my food and I don't know what happened.

has anyone experience this?

I'm cooking on a gas stove using nonstick caphalon brand pans that are about a year old.

Thanks
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Old 12-28-2005, 08:17 PM   #11
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I love my Calaphon non-stick pans, and do use them on almost-high heat all the time. I have 5 different skillet/saute pans and a dutch oven, round casserole, and stock pot/steamer (It's made of something new). Some of them are 5-6 years old and still like new.
If I'm searing something in my skillet, I turn the burner on high and heat the pan for a moment, pour in a few tbls of oil, add the meat and reduce heat by one notch. The meat browns beautifully, and I do get goodies on the bottom.

However...I still use my mom's old cast aluminum dutch oven (circa 1946) to make pot roast, and a huge Magnalite soup pot to make gumbo. I also have a big black & white speckled pot that is wonderful for corn on the cob.

A while back, I bought a stainless steel roaster/lasagna pan on sale for $39.95. It sat in the basement for a long time, but I finally got it out to make lasagna for friends last week. I did use cooking spray on it, but my husband (bless his heart) said it cleaned up beautifully.

I have a lot of nice pieces of cast iron in the basement, and if we ever have to start cooking over an open fire, we'll be glad we have them. But they are just too heavy for me to use, as is Le Creuset.
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Old 03-03-2006, 03:28 PM   #12
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I have a whole bunch of cast iron pans my dad left me when he past away including every size of fry pan,Problem is I have a ceramic top stove and Im not sure how not to break top of stove with these or if you can even use them on ceramic.
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Old 01-17-2007, 09:28 AM   #13
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Exclamation Toxic Nonstick

Teflon and all nonstick surfaces are toxic and should not be used by anyone. Companies who make teflon cookware are being vastly pressured by health-conscious consumers to, at the least, warn people of the toxicity of the products they manufacture. Recently, those companies have admitted that the fumes created by the heating of teflon kills birds and "sickens" people. I cannot imagine anyone wanting to use something that kills a living creature. If it kills a bird quickly because it is small, and it kills a human slowly because we are larger- what is the difference? So, therefore, this is my warning to all of you, and now that you have all been properly warned, I would hope that you would cease using any and all teflon cookware.
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Old 01-17-2007, 10:36 AM   #14
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I have analon anodized aluminum, and mine can go into the oven up to 450 or 500 degrees. I always use it on high heat on the range too. I have been using these pots and pans every day for 3 years, with no damage to the pans at all. The cooing surface doesn't even have a scratch.
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Old 01-17-2007, 11:02 AM   #15
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I am a self admitted cookware junkie. And over the years I've learned that there is no one pan that is right for all jobs or all people. However, a heavy pan (thick metal or ceramic) cooks better and more evenly than a thin one.

(TV loves the SS cause it shows the food so well.)

metal and pottery properties are important to know
1) copper heats and cools quickly so you have great control; anodized aluminum is next down the list.
2) stainless linings are the most durable least reactive. Tin is more responsive but will at somepoint need renewing.
3) enamled cast iron is great for slow cooking and searing...it holds the heat and can take high heat and is non reactive
4) for searing...carbon steel
5) for non stick well seasoned cast iron and teflon
6) soapstone heats as fast as copper, cools as slowly as cast iron, is non reactive, and cooks very well.

Now of all these: copper needs polishing, SS and aluminum need thorough cleaning to remove salts and fats that will damage or gum up the product, cast iron needs the seasoning maintained, enamel can chip, soapstone and ceramic can chip or crack, teflon can scratch and wear out due to heat abuse. Every pan has some issue. Get to know the ins and outs, get a fine collection of a number of different types of pans for different cooking styles and enjoy the heck out of the culinary world!
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Old 01-17-2007, 11:41 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steveynkatey
Teflon and all nonstick surfaces are toxic and should not be used by anyone. Companies who make teflon cookware are being vastly pressured by health-conscious consumers to, at the least, warn people of the toxicity of the products they manufacture. Recently, those companies have admitted that the fumes created by the heating of teflon kills birds and "sickens" people. I cannot imagine anyone wanting to use something that kills a living creature. If it kills a bird quickly because it is small, and it kills a human slowly because we are larger- what is the difference? So, therefore, this is my warning to all of you, and now that you have all been properly warned, I would hope that you would cease using any and all teflon cookware.
I think that your post is far too alarmist, especially the opening sentence. Although this forum is probably not the place for a heated debate on the topic, your comment should not go unchallenged.

I have a variety of cookware -- SS, cast-iron, enameled cast-iron, anodized aluminum, and nonstick -- and love them all for their specific purposes. I use them correctly and am not at all worried about deleterious effects.
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Old 01-17-2007, 12:04 PM   #17
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Just as we have different knives for different jobs, we also have different pans. I thoroughly enjoy my Calphalon One anodized aluminum pans for must of my cooking. Eggs and fried portatoes go into the non-stick and my cast iron is used outside on the grill and when camping. These are all tools with specific up and downsides as stated earlier. Don't buy into the T.V. chefs and feel bad about what you have. Find out what suits your needs and go for it. After all it's just cooking and it should be fun.

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Old 01-17-2007, 02:33 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steveynkatey
Teflon and all nonstick surfaces are toxic and should not be used by anyone. Companies who make teflon cookware are being vastly pressured by health-conscious consumers to, at the least, warn people of the toxicity of the products they manufacture. Recently, those companies have admitted that the fumes created by the heating of teflon kills birds and "sickens" people. I cannot imagine anyone wanting to use something that kills a living creature. If it kills a bird quickly because it is small, and it kills a human slowly because we are larger- what is the difference? So, therefore, this is my warning to all of you, and now that you have all been properly warned, I would hope that you would cease using any and all teflon cookware.

I've seen posts like this ever since I started visiting cooking forums beginning when I joined the FTV forums maybe 4 or 5 years ago.

Teflon is not toxic. If you consume teflon flakes for some reason it is inert and will pass through you with no effect at all.

Teflon will outgass but that happens when it reaches almost 600 (574) and if you're using any cooking medium whether oil, lard or shortning they will have reached thier smoke point between 350-450 and the resulting smoke produced will kill your birds just as fast and leave your kitchen full of smoke and you coughing for the severeal hours that it takes the smoke to clear.

As far as sickening, and or killing people, studies have shown that teflon outgassing may cause mild flu like symptoms at worst.

People should do a little reasearch instead of believing every bit of alamest information presented to them.
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Old 01-17-2007, 03:06 PM   #19
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People concerned for their pets should certainly invest in proper ventilation to the outside; even if that means an old fashioned exhaust fan in the wall! I don't know who came up with recirculating smokey air and greese into ones face and hair as a solution for cooking fumes, but it doesn't work and should not be tolerated. Spend a little to gain a lot!
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Old 01-18-2007, 01:44 AM   #20
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I use a Scanpan and love it. It is teflon coated but according to the company there shouldn't be a problem with it. This is what they had to say on their website:

These reports have focused on PFOA and the EPA's review of this chemical as a potential health hazard. Here are the facts:

PFOA is a "carrier chemical" that appears during the production of Teflon® and other PTFE raw materials. During the production process, all PFOA is 100% removed and captured in filters, which are then discarded in compliance with applicable laws. THAT is where the EPA comes in – on the environmental side of the raw material manufacturers. The PFOA issue is an EPA issue, not an FDA issue.

It is unfortunate that the media shows the image of a Teflon® pan while reporting on PFOA. They should show the image of a factory producing PTFE and capturing and filtering out the PFOA.

There is no PFOA present in the finished product.

SCANPAN Cookware is PFOA free.

All SCANPAN Cookware imports from Denmark are FDA certified and safe to use for food preparation.
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