Good plain pots
- celeste Feb 22, 2007 03:15 PM
I have a lot of high end great equipment in my kitchen but one thing I've never gotten around to replacing is my set of plain pots (1qt, 2qt, 3qt). It's high time I replaced these cheep things as I keep having to re-screw the handles in.
Any recommendations? I want good, basic stovetop pots that are easy to pour from. I have a 2 quart open stock All Clad currently that I don't like that much. First, the handle is long and skinny, that makes it really hard to grip the handle and pour evenly out of the pot. Also, that particular pot is very wide and shallow, I'd like small pots that are deeper than wider.
I'm not really looking for a big set as I have lots of other pots and cookware, so I'm willing to buy open stock. What do you guys have out there that you love?
Check out the Sitram pots. I like mine. I don't know if you'll like the handles or not - they're pretty basic / utilitarian. I like them personally, but haven't done a whole lot of pouring out of mine (it's a big 4.5 qt or so saucepan).
I have the "catering" series one.
I've had the same anodized aluminum pots (Magnalite, Calphalon) for 20 years now and am very pleased. They still look like new. However, judging from friends' experiences, the claim that you can routinely use metal utensils with them is untrue. For stirring I use wood spoons (though for dishing out contents, etc., metal utensils seem to cause no problem). The even cooking of aluminum is a plus.
You can't buy the same quality of anodized Calphalon any more like my 20+ year old saucepans. So when I needed some for the house in the country, I got plain old NSF aluminum from the restaurant supply house in 1, 2, 3, and 4 quart sizes. They flare slightly, nest together so take up little storage space and heat evenly. I love them and loved the price. Range was $8 to $20. Restaurant stuff uses universal lids, an added advantage. Hard to beat.
I love my Cuisinart saucepans that I've had for ~25 years. The pouring lips are so well designed it is almost impossible to make a dribble down the side of the pan even if you're trying. They can be found discounted to quite reasonable prices if you shop around at the bargain stores. In fact, I bought two more just a couple of months ago at a Tuesday Morning, and they are still making 'em just as good as the old ones, although the styling is somewhat different.
re: Jim Washburn
I second the Cuisinart saucepans. My worn out Calphalon is going to the Good Will some have warped and most the annodization has worn off. Not worth sending back to relive the same problem.. Love the Cuisinart and have picked up most pieces at TJ Maxx for next to nothing . PS The Cuisinart stainless can go in to the dishwasher.
You should checkout Scanpan; I have their stainless line and really love them. The pans are deep rather than wide, the handles aren't screwed on so they don't come off and they have useful measurements printed on the inside. Dishwasher and oven safe.
Check if there is a restaurant supply store in your area that is open to the retail public. Samsclub also carries some restaurant supplies.
The least expensive pots that they carry are uncoated aluminum. The 8" skillet, for example, is the kind that restaurants use a dozen at a time to fix entrees. The metal is thick. The handle is held on with 3 stout rivets. Handles tend to be long and thin, suited for grabbing with a towel, and usable both on stove top and in the oven.
Sauce pans tend to be deep, though the sides are straight, and may not be the best for slow pouring.
Like the OP, my pots after 25+ years had problems with the handle screws (basic Farberware), so I started replacing them through open stock purchases. I too love the Cuisinart 2 qt., which I picked up for about $20 at Linen 'N Things. Despite all the complaints on this Board about the Calphalon annodized pots, I really think they conduct heat best, and recommend them for skillets and omelet pans (mine are only about 5 years old, so maybe I'll feel differently in a few years). I could not locate the 3qt Cuisinart in open stock, so I just bought a stainless Calphalon, which is similar in style to the Cuisinart.