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Old 07-15-2008, 04:10 PM   #11
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Personally all I will cook in is cast iron skillets and Revere Ware
I have my Dad's cast iron skillets, and I cherish them with each use. That man could put together a four course meal using them along with one Revere copper clad 2 qt. saucepan. Our 2 qt. RW copperclad saucepan was left in a home we aquired. No telling how old it was then, but it's 35 years older now and still going strong. I do have one Teflon type skillet that I use for crepes, and a large oval Le Cruset 'Dutch oven'. I find my assortment of pans hilarious as I'm often described as a 'gourmet' cook.
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Old 07-15-2008, 04:14 PM   #12
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I have a set of Revere that I got for my wedding 16 years ago but I could kick myself for not taking my MIL's copper bottom Revere when we were cleaning out her estate. I don't think I was thinking right at the time.
As far as Teflon coated, I have two Berndes pans that I love. The trick with Teflon coated is not to use it on a heat source higher than medium. Mine will heat up sufficiently on medium to brown most things. http://www.berndes-cookware.com/ I've had mine for years with no scratching, flaking or warping.
I had a set of cast iron, I hated them. I've always heard such great things about them but mine never did season and they were too heavy for my hands and a pain to clean. I'd like to maybe buy one nice cast iron pan again and retry because I do believe they could be a benefit in some cooking situations.
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Old 07-15-2008, 04:52 PM   #13
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Emeril's has copper in the bottom, it's not right on the bottom. It comes in different sizes. And with lids, nice lids you can see through. And the lids don't break easily, my 5 yo puts the dishes away and has dropped them MANY times and they are all great and fit WONERFULLY. If you don't want cast iron I'd go with Emeril.
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Old 07-15-2008, 04:57 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by stitchwitch View Post
I have a set of Revere that I got for my wedding 16 years ago but I could kick myself for not taking my MIL's copper bottom Revere when we were cleaning out her estate. I don't think I was thinking right at the time.
As far as Teflon coated, I have two Berndes pans that I love. The trick with Teflon coated is not to use it on a heat source higher than medium. Mine will heat up sufficiently on medium to brown most things. http://www.berndes-cookware.com/ I've had mine for years with no scratching, flaking or warping.
I had a set of cast iron, I hated them. I've always heard such great things about them but mine never did season and they were too heavy for my hands and a pain to clean. I'd like to maybe buy one nice cast iron pan again and retry because I do believe they could be a benefit in some cooking situations.
You can't cook when you can't put things on high. In fact the reason that most people don't get food like you can in good restutants is that we can't get our stoves up as high as they can. (And I'm not talking about Applebee's and other chains)

It just doesn't seem to make sense to me to not cook on high when that is what is needed.

Oh and also with the Emeril's the handles are not plastic so you can put them in the oven if you need to. That makes it nice when you have a recipe that calls for cooking it on the stove first and then in the oven, don't have to switch pans.
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Old 07-15-2008, 05:33 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by MAmaDawn View Post
You can't cook when you can't put things on high. In fact the reason that most people don't get food like you can in good restutants is that we can't get our stoves up as high as they can. (And I'm not talking about Applebee's and other chains)
Yep, you're not going to blacken a fish unless the pan is smoking (literally).

When stir frying I cannot get the needed heat to add more than small amounts at a time.
The flame the Chinese restaurant next to where I worked had a campfire sized flame under their wok.

They say 500F for Teflon to break down but I have my doubts if it doesn't happen lower. Even so, that rules it out for some of my bakeware.
Even if you don't use high heat there's always the empty pan that is forgotten on the lit burner. I think that's how most people kill their birds. The 500 doesn't explain why so many Americans have PFOA in their systems when they're nowhere near a manufacturing plant using it.

If I'm going to get something extra from my pans I'd rather it be iron.
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Old 07-15-2008, 05:36 PM   #16
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Pots and pans are a personal preference. It is not necessary to get an entire set if you don't cook that often. But I highly suggest you get a decent priced item so you won't be finding yourself in this situation later on down the road. A good piece of cookware should last you a long time. If you like to bake goods you should get one that you can transfer from stove to oven. If you live by a factory outlet, you can look there. Caphalon Factory Outlet stores have seconds that you look to build your own "set" from. I suggest you pick what you really think you would use most. You may even luck out at a factory outlet and get a decent priced set, set.

I am unaware of what Rachel Ray's cookware is like. I heard / read mixed reviews about Emeril's cookware even though it is subsidary to All-Clad. I've read that Kirkland brand (Costco) is pretty decent in the oven and on the stove. [according to consumer reports]

You can either go with.

1) Cast Iron
2) Stainless Steel
3) Hard Anodized

Cast Iron is quite low maintenance really. Provided you keep it seasoned properly.

Stainless Steel: Look for an 18/10 gauge for sturdiness.

Hard Anodized is like teflon, only it doesn't have the chemicals that will peel off.

Cooking wise, one should preheat the pan at med-high heat. It is not recommended to cook on high heat unless you need to sear meat.

HTH.
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Old 07-15-2008, 05:49 PM   #17
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I have had my Farberware for over 30 years. It is constructed similar to Revereware, but has an aluminum bottom instead of copper. When I bought it, it was less expensive than Revereware, but it has held up well. I bought a basic set and the lid from the large saucepan fits the small skillet and the lid from the 6 qt pot fits the large skillet. I have purchased a couple of other pieces over the years to fill a specific need, but see no reason to replace the set ever.
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Old 07-15-2008, 06:06 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by MAmaDawn View Post
You can't cook when you can't put things on high. .
I don't know, the extra weight around my girth shows I can cook just fine.
I've never been a big one to burn my kitchen up with lots of smoke and fire. I cook with gas, get a nice pan warmed up and then brown things. My stove is a professional stove so I think that makes a little difference. If I put that thing on high I'll incinerate anything. I guess it depends upon preference. I cook with both teflon coated and my Revere and a few other pots and pans that I've collected here and there. Each has it's own special use.
Cookware like purses and wallets is a personal thing, find what you like and use it. If you hate it, it's just going to sit in your cabinet collecting dust. There really is no right or wrong and the reason restaurant food tastes so darn good is because of the stuff they put in it like a half a pound of butter to saute!
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Old 07-15-2008, 06:16 PM   #19
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I love my stainless steel pots and pans. They are an off brand that we got at Sam's it seems like ages ago. It shouldn't matter what brand anything is as long as they have good heavy bottoms, handles are attached well and the materials are something you like to cook with. Do check out the clubs like Sams and Costco though. They tend to have pretty good deals on cookware.
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Old 07-15-2008, 07:45 PM   #20
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Cast iron is too heavy for my wrists, also. However, I've been using 2 hard anodized pieces of cookware - one skillet and one 3 quart pot by Wearever for the last couple of years. They are the very best non-stick cookware I've ever used. They are nice heavy pans/pots, but not as heavy as cast iron....probably more like cast aluminum. Wish I'd had them when I first got married 43 years ago.
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