Here we will look at the various cookware pieces that you may want in your cooking set for you or your loved ones.
Saucepan is one of the most used cookware in most household. You can make sauce, soup, chilli, cook rice, steam or boil vegetables, make stew, and much more in it. Saucepan is made from various material and stainless steel, multi-ply saucepans are more common.
There are a few sizes of sauce pans that are common, 1 quart, 2 quart, 3 quart and 4 quart size are available. You can also choose with lid, without lids, sauce pan with spout for easy pouring in to another container. Depending your family you can choose small size or bigger size saucepan. 3 piece saucepan set is a good starter set for many household cook as you can cook various sizes of food at one time.
Some saucepan have tight fitting lids as well. If you make a many sauces, spouting saucepan for pouring might be useful.
Best saucepan we like, are round, with flat bottom, easy to hold thin handle and with a lid. Saucepan with glass lid is useful to peak through the cooking food without letting go of steam and heat from inside the pan.
Basic 3-4 pieces set is a good starter set for many cooks.
Frying pan and skillet sometimes are used interchangeably. Some experts say that frying pan tend be on heavier side, such as cast iron pan and skillet tend be on light weighted side, such as non-stick pan. However people use the term, skillet or frying pan is one of the pieces that is must have for all kitchen.
Frying pan has its low, sloping sides, and is used for food that needs to be stirred, scrambled, or flipped over as it cooks in a small amount of butter, oil, or liquid. Frying pan comes in 10 inches and 12 inches diameter. Usually most people buy both sizes of frying pan to cook small and large quantity of food. Look for easy grip handle to hold, flip easily while cooking. Some frying pans come with lids, although it is not necessary but good options for a few cook who may want to cook food in its own steam.
Frying pan comes in various material such as stainless steel, cast iron, copper based, aluminum and often have non-stick coating to easily fry, stir fry food.
We like flat bottomed, long and narrow handle frying with non-stick coating. One with all-clad material is best as it tends to be hold heat better and made with non-stick coating. We prefer our frying pans without lid as most of our cooking does not require it.
Saute’ Pan is close cousin of frying pan or skillet. The difference between frying pan and saute’ pan seems subtle, frying pan has narrow and low sides while saute’ pan has straight lines and much higher sides almost like a shorter and wider version of sauce pan. Frying pan and Saute’ pan both have flat bottoms and long handles.
The Saute’ pan, name comes from the French verb sauter means “to jump” or “to leap”, is for cooking the same food that needs to be stirred often but with more liquid in it. Therefore, you’ll may use a saute’ pan to brown, sear, saute’, and maybe even scramble, you’ll also use it to braise stews, ragouts, and sauces.
Saute’ pans also comes in various diameter and from 1 quart to 5.5 quart sizes and many comes with lid. Since you will be cooking with some liquid, we like saute’ pan with tight fitting lid. Saute’ pan also comes in stainless steel, all-clad, non-stick, and other material.
We recommend at least one medium size saute’ pan with a lid and long and easy handle. Since you will be using liquid, having non-stick quality is not as important here. If you can afford it, add 2 different sizes of saute’ pan, but one good quality one do just as fine.
1. Cuisinart Chef’s Classic Nonstick Hard-Anodized 12-Inch Everyday Pan with Medium Dome Cover
2. Calphalon Contemporary Nonstick 10- and 12-Inch Omelet Pans, Set of 2
Some time saucier pan is also called chef’s pan or reduction saucepan. Saucier pan looks almost like shorter, curved and little different shape of sauce pan. Saucier pan is used when repetitious motion of stirring or whisking is required during cooking. Since it has more heavier bottom than most saucepans, curved and short, it is great for making custard, rice dishes, and making sauces. Saucier pan great for general braising, poaching, sauteing or reducing liquids.
Saucier pan comes with lid or without lid. Saucier pans comes is different diameter from 7 to 13 inches and 1 to 5/12 quart sizes and comes in various material such as stainless steel, cast iron, all clad, copper.
Since saucier pan are used with continued motion that requires stirring or whisking, buy one that is thick bottom but not too heavy for continuous hold. Check the rim that are thin enough for ease of pouring liquid if required. Make sure handle is long enough not to get hot to touch, thin and easy to grasp for longer period during stirring or whisking.
1. Anolon Advanced 5-1/2-Quart Covered Saucier Pan with Helper Handle
2. Calphalon Contemporary Nonstick 5-Quart Saucier with Glass Lid
Saucier pan and chef’s pan are very similar. See Saucier pan above for details. Some chef’s pan have straight edges instead of curved ones, however both saucier pan and chef’s pan are used interchangeably by many cooks. Look for thick bottom, quality chef’s pan with lid with long, easy to grip handles.
1. Circulon Infinite Circulon 6-Quart Covered Chef Pan with Helper Handle
2. Cuisinart Chef’s Classic Stainless 3-Quart Chef’s Pan with Cover
Stock pot are large and taller pots and usually good for making a large quantity of food such as soups, stews and chili. Some people uses to steam vegetables and rice in it. Stock pots comes in various sizes from 8 quarts to 36 quarts, for to fit need for any size of large cooking batch job.
Stock pot is good for slow simmering of slow cooked beans or chili, as well as great and tall enough for boiling pasta, corn and cob or steaming vegetables and crabs.
We recommend buying at least one large enough size stock pot that feeds your crowd. Do not buy copper pot, as they are super expensive. Get quality and heavy bottom stock pan that you can use for sauteing or browning before adding liquid to soup or stew. Stainless steel pots are generally favorite among chef and most consumers, however, some non-stick pot are preferred by some cooks for its ease of use and cleaning.
1. Prime Pacific 18/10 Stainless Steel 21 Quart Stock Pot With Glass Lid
2. Cuisinart Classic Stockpot
Dutch oven are one of the oldest cooking vessel spanning over 100s of years. Dutch oven are usually, straight and thick layered with tight fitting lid, generally they are made of cast iron material. They are usually great for outdoor camping, oven cooking and stove top cooking. You can buy different camping dutch oven or modern dutch ovens for stove top and oven cooking use. Le Creuset and Le Chasseur, refer to their dutch ovens as “French ovens”, or in the UK, dutch oven is known as “casserole dishes”. Some older styles, such as the unglazed ovens by Lodge, CampChef, and Wagner, retain the bale handle, while others, such as the enameled versions by Staub, Sante, and le Creuset, have two loop handles. Modern ovens may also be made of thick cast aluminum or ceramic material.
We preferred good quality, enamel based dutch oven as they will not require seasoning and regular keep up maintenance. Make sure you do not use enamel coated dutch oven for deep frying as it may not able to take high heat and peel. Most cast iron and enamel based dutch ovens are dishwasher safe so cleaning is easier.
Double boiler are generally two saucepans fitting on top of each other used to cook delicate sauces or melt a chocolate chips, or cheese without any burning or seizing. Sometimes, many cooks use to cook food that requires constant stirring such as porridge but do not want to constantly do it for that time. Generally bottom pan holds water and top pan holds actually cooking substance such as chocolate.
Get a thick layers 18/10 stainless steel double boiler that has long and narrow fitted handle and tight fitting lid to make sure no steam escape during the cooking process.
1. Range Kleen Stainless Steel 3-Piece 2-Quart Covered Double Boiler
2. Fagor Stainless-Steel 2-Quart Double Boiler with Steamer Insert
Calderos is used mostly in Spanish Mexican kitchen for everything from soups, noodles, sauces,cooking rice and beans, roasting, browning. It has rounded curved shape, tight fitting and lid and two, cool to touch handles. Some Spanish house can have as many as 4-5 different sizes of calderos and use it daily. Most of the calderos is made from cast aluminum material.
Since these pot can basically can be used for cooking any type of food, it can be versatile piece to have. Look for cast aluminum base medium to large size calderos which will not required seasoning and are pretty inexpensive to buy.
1. Imusa Cast Aluminum Caldero 44 centimeter, 17.9 Quart, NSF Certified
2. Imusa Aluminum Porcelain Exterior Caldero with Glass Lid, Assorted Colors