Non stick,or Anodized?, how about Calphalon knives?
I am on a budget,and want to get one good skillet for eggs,steaks(pan seared,finished in the oven),fish,and just any stove top cooking i don't do in my cast skillet,i have been looking at the Calphalon, Anodized,and the Non stick, which would you recommend?,and why,(I am aware of the high heat issue with Teflon)my next dilemma is ,I need/want one good knife, after reading various mfg's info ,I am drawn again to Calphalon, namely the Contemporary 7" Santoku knife,your thoughts on this?,and lastly after shopping some of the sites on line, i am tempted to go to the local BB&B to buy them,any one have a better,more economical idea?,thank you.
The cast iron makes such excellent steaks, I can't imagine using anything else--particularly nonstick!
If you really want a good skillet, I highly recommend an All-Clad stainless, or the Copper Core like I have. As long as you heat it up first, add your oil, then food, it performs identical to the Calphalon Nonstick I had for years--eggs, omelets--everything has not only NOT stuck, but it slides right out. Yet if you raise the heat and let something set (chicken breasts) it develops a lovely fond for pan-sauces. Honestly, these All-Clads have blown my mind and I cannot imagine why anyone would ever utilize any nonstick surface when All-Clad makes this incredible stainless that does everything. And yes I know it's pricey, but it's gunna last forever (unlike Nonstick or Anodized--I used to love Magnalite Pro, but they died some time ago--Anodized's life is limited). I used to think All-Clad was over-priced yuppie-ware, but now that I have lived with it, and seen it perform flawlessly, I am truly amazed and converted. They are indeed worth the high prices...!
Also the recommendation about the 20% off coupons is great--save you a lot of bucks, and make the All-Clad that much more affordable...!
If you're on a budget, you might consider this Skillet that Cook's Illustrated recommends http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000BPEQQS?t... At only $30, you'll have what you need for eggs, pancakes and delicate fish, simple sautées and still have money left in your pocket for a universal lid like the silicone one that Sur La Table sells. You may not have a lid for your cast iron skillet. It's always a good idea. That cast iron is the ideal for pan-searing steaks and sturdier fish. I use mine as a roasting pan for chicken, too.
Millions and millions of people have used the new generations of Teflon with no ill effects. Much of the old information on Teflon is outdated. Don't overheat empty pans or leave them unattended but then you wouldn't abuse your things anyway, would you? You shouldn't use non-stick sprays in them because they bond to the surface just as they do on cast iron. The build up will eventually flake off into the food which is nasty.
For real value in knives, look at Forschner which also makes Swiss Army knives. They've been making quality knives for the meat-cutting, fishing, and food-service industries for more than 120 years and their prices are excellent. You can get their 3-piece chef's set for about $60 - paring, slicing and cook's knives. That will leave enough to get a good sharpening steel. Shop for the best prices on-line. These are really great knives. Incredibly good for the money.
Here's a hint about BB&B: Research what you want online (selection is much better). Print out the page from their site. Take it and your 20% off coupon (you know, the ones you get every 3 weeks or so in the mail) to your local store. If they don't have what you want in stock, they will order it for you, give you the 20% discount, and have it mailed directly to your house.
I think it's the cheapest deal around.
If you want something for eggs, in my opinion you want non-stick. Others will no doubt report that they have good luck with stainless pans or what have you for eggs but I've just had no luck at all with it. Amazon has many good deals on Calphalon or other brands. I prefer All-Clad to Calphalon, but that's a personal thing.
Check that out for a couple of pans pretty cheap.
The Calphalon knives are a reasonable option if you don't put them through heavy use. I bought my wife a 5" Santoku and she loves it. It holds its edge well and takes an edge very well. You might think about this set: