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Thread: Gadgets of the Kitchen, Cooking and Food Prep Subclasses

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    Senior Member Sir Caveat's Avatar
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    Gadgets of the Kitchen, Cooking and Food Prep Subclasses

    I'm periodically in the market for nonstick pans as they lose their namesake quality over time. I have a tinge of guilt that it seems pretty wasteful to have to change pans so frequently. I guess it poses a net external environmental cost. But my convenience and internal costs are paramount to me. Since nonstick pans are relatively disposable, I was persuaded by America's Test Kitchen's (ATK) recommendation of an inexpensive one, the T-Fal professional:



    In the course of my pan research, I came across another ATK video that made me realize I want a pressure cooker:



    However, I'm not persuaded that a stove top one is my best option. Attractive features of the electric ones are that they have timers and don't use up a sometimes crowded stove surface. I'm considering getting the Instant Pot DUO60. That it can hold it's own lid when open is a standout feature. That means I won't have to look for some empty counter space to rest a lid dripping with condensation.


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    Senior Member Sir Caveat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MarkovChain View Post
    Have you tried cast iron? Once you wear them in and have a nice season on them, they're surprisingly non stick. You do have to use a little oil in them though. What I like about them is how tough and easy to use they are. cleaning is simple, just wipe them with a paper towel and your done, and you don't have to baby them. I use metal utensils in them all the time, and they don't care.
    I haven't. I'm tempted to experiment with one. The ability to use high heat should make it great for searing steaks. I've heard seasoned cast iron called the original nonstick.

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    Utisz's Avatar
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    It is becoming clear to me that when I moved into the apartment, everything was furnished a cheaply as possible.

    There is nothing more insidious in this world however than a non-stick pan that is only sorta-non-stick since you can't clean the fucking thing properly while holding out some hope that the patch of non-stickiness won't grow into an omelette blackening nightmare. Plus the ass of the pan I have turns it into a bowl making it impossible to fry eggs without them running into the centre except for cracking eggs with one hand while tilting the pan with the other which is a skill I'm not so good at (cracking eggs with one hand) but improving these days.

    So suffice it to say I'm on the market for a good frying pan and was thinking of getting a cast iron skillet and trying to season it.

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    Senior Member Sir Caveat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Utisz View Post
    Plus the ass of the pan I have turns it into a bowl making it impossible to fry eggs without them running into the centre except for cracking eggs with one hand while tilting the pan with the other which is a skill I'm not so good at (cracking eggs with one hand) but improving these days.
    It's pretty common for the shape of cheap pans to deform over time and then for them to not sit flat on the burner. I wouldn't expect that issue to develop in a thick cast iron pan.

    I've neglected to correct the slight off balance of my stove, tilted to back. It works out for keeping eggs separated in the pan. When I drop an egg in, it slides back. So I drop the 1st egg towards the back of the pan. Then I turn the pan 180 degrees and drop in the 2d egg on the other side.

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    Persona Oblongata OrionzRevenge's Avatar
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    Cast Iron is great. It fell out of favor IMO because it is heavy as hell for a petite person to handle, and some can't abide not giving cookware a good washing in detergent.

    Normally I just wipe it clean with a napkin and sit it back on the burner for a minute till the residual oils begin to smoke.
    Then if this is a nuance, just place it inside the stove to cool off.

    Also, countless have been the times when I too have not been able to abide not cleaning it with detergent. Or have managed to fully burn something and need to scrub it with steel-wool in soapy water.

    No problem. Just use a napkin to coat the inner surface with a thin veneer of oil and burn off as described above.

    Never let it sit with moisture on the inner surface or it will rust an orange tint.

    However if you do.
    No problem. Just use a napkin to coat the inner surface with a thin veneer of oil and burn off as described above.
    Creativity is the residue of time wasted. ~ Albert Einstein

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    schlemiel Faust's Avatar
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    My stock in kitchen tools is pretty damn limited, but it's enough to prepare just about anything albeit a bit slower and in smaller quantities. I got a Paderno knife-set and a cookbook over the holidays so I intend to share some experiences in whatever cooking/meal-pics thread happens to currently exist.

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    Senior Member Sir Caveat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OrionzRevenge View Post
    and some can't abide not giving cookware a good washing in detergent.
    I do find the idea of putting away a pan with the cooking surface only towel cleaned a little off putting.

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    Member Stopharian's Avatar
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    Actually cheaper cast iron does warp and newer cast iron is sometimes cheaply made. For instance better manufacturers will machine grind the inside to a smooth finish on a better pan. but you can find old cast iron pans at yard sales, ebay, thrifts stores. If they aren't warped then buy them no matter what. With minimal work, any cast iron pan can be cleaned and re-seasoned with minimal effort. Google methods for cleaning. They often involve oven cleaning cycles where the exterior accretions are cooked into ash.

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    Member Stopharian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike View Post
    I do find the idea of putting away a pan with the cooking surface only towel cleaned a little off putting.
    You can also put some more oil on it before you put it away.

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    Senior Member Sir Caveat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stopharian View Post
    You can also put some more oil on it before you put it away.
    Storing it with a towel dried film of clean cooking oil, as opposed to meat fat remnants, does sound cleaner and more appealing.

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