Author Topic: cookware  (Read 2993 times)

Offline MrsMnq

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cookware
« on: January 10, 2015, 02:15:02 PM »
Can anyone suggest really good cookware.  I dont care of the cost i am so sick of having to replace  pans every 6-12months. Some say cast iron is best some say no way. So confused.  Any help appreciated. Tia

Offline Warren Dew

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Re: cookware
« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2015, 09:52:01 PM »
Certainly the cookware I use most often are my four cast iron frying pans.  They do require a certain amount of care to maintain the seasoning.  Also, really good cast iron isn't made any more, so you have to find the stuff on eBay or the like, and it's not cheap.  In my opinion, Wagner cast iron dating from before 1970 is the best stuff, though I also have a 1920s vintage Griswold pan.

For water based cooking, I use my 1970s vintage Revere wear stainless, but one has to be careful that it doesn't boil dry.  For roasting pans and roasting racks, I use no name stainless steel.

Why do you end up having to replace your pans?


Offline MrsMnq

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Re: cookware
« Reply #2 on: January 11, 2015, 01:37:48 AM »
Thanks for the great info.  My husband insists on buying non stick and they are 'non stick for about 8 months max before they die epically. I have wanted cast iron for years now but hubby keeps saying no that they are a bugger and everything sticks to them. I do love my runny eggs every morning so is it possible to have eggs that wont stick on cast iron? How do you clean and care for it. Tia

Offline Warren Dew

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Re: cookware
« Reply #3 on: January 11, 2015, 02:14:51 AM »
You will need one of the older pans that has a smooth bottom.  Some have rough bottoms, which is okay for hamburgers but which I haven't got to work with eggs.

Once you have the pan, if it isn't already seasoned - that is, if it doesn't already have a smooth black layer on it - season it.  Do that by wiping a thin layer of highly saturated fat, like beef tallow, on it, then putting it in the oven for an hour or two.  You can find exact temperatures and times in an internet search.  It might end up smoking a bit.  This only needs to be done once, before first use.

Then, use it only for oil based cooking, not water based cooking.  Don't use too much detergent on it when cleaning.  Some people just wash their cast iron in water with no soap; some just rub it out with rock salt, with no water.  Me, I wash it in dish water that is soapy from washing other dishes, but I don't put detergent directly on the cast iron.  Gentle cleaning will preserve the seasoning.

I cook all my fried eggs in cast iron, and I like them over easy, so I have to pick each one up twice.  You'll need to use a little bit of fat - I leave some of the fat from the bacon in the pan to fry the eggs in.  You'll also need a thin metal spatula to gently separate the eggs from the pan; it may take a little bit of practice, but it isn't too hard.

Offline Wingman

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Re: cookware
« Reply #4 on: January 13, 2015, 11:12:23 AM »
It just so happens I too am in the market for a cast iron skillet and didn't really know what direction to take.  This thread answered all of my questions.  Thank you guys!  :)


Offline Wingman

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Re: cookware
« Reply #5 on: January 13, 2015, 11:15:20 AM »
In my opinion, Wagner cast iron dating from before 1970 is the best stuff, though I also have a 1920s vintage Griswold pan.

So you prefer Wagner over Griswold?  Griswold's are easy to come by, but Wagner seem to be more scarce. (In terms of used/vintage pans)  I've also noticed that many people who are selling Griswold's have the matching lid as well.  I'm liking the idea of being able to use the skillet as a shallow dutch oven so to speak.  Also, do you suggest a certain size/# ?  Thanks in advance  ;)
« Last Edit: January 13, 2015, 11:32:52 AM by Wingman »

Offline Warren Dew

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Re: cookware
« Reply #6 on: January 13, 2015, 01:25:46 PM »
The old Wagner pans were noticeably thicker and heavier than the Griswold pans, so they spread the heat better.  I do use my Griswold pan regularly too, though - and I did find and buy a matching lid for it.

For sizes, I found #8 to be most useful when cooking for two.  Now, with a family, I use a #10 the most.  Sometimes I want something bigger than a #10, but I don't need it enough to have actually bought it yet - and a #10 is already pretty heavy.

I also have a #5 or #6 - the number is obscured by deposits - that I used a lot when I was single, and a #3 that can be used for just one hamburger or egg, or for tasks like melting butter.

Offline Wingman

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Re: cookware
« Reply #7 on: January 13, 2015, 03:02:08 PM »
The old Wagner pans were noticeably thicker and heavier than the Griswold pans, so they spread the heat better.
Very cool.  That's what I was concerned about and trying to decide between the two brands for my first real skillet.  I will be buying more in the future, I'm certain of it.  I'm almost positive my grandmother's was a Wagner.  There is no replacing that thing.  Cooked amazingly! 

Thank you Warren