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For the single-dwelling cook?

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link_930 Jul 24, 2008 06:51 PM

My Googling attempts have been futile, so I thought someone here could help. Sometimes I want to make one serving of rice, arroz con pollo or various soups, and found that even a two-quart pot is too large and the food does not come out right (ie risotto or confit, and dishes where the food must be immersed in liquid). I've easily found tiny pans for one egg, little steamer baskets, etc. but am looking for things like one-quart pots with lids, single-serving baking dishes (say, for a chicken leg and a handful of vegetables) -- items that are not easily found (or if they are, please let me know) but are convenient for single-dwellers who prefer to cook their food at home.

I appreciate any feedback, and thanks!

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  1. AnneInMpls RE: link_930 Jul 24, 2008 07:41 PM

    Me, I would get a small (4-6 cup) rice cooker and embrace the leftovers (they make marvellous lunches when reheated). But perhaps you could check out Creuset's tiny covered French oven (the mini cocotte), which has a capacity of 1/3 quart. It retails for about $55 - cheap for Le Creuset!

    Anne

    1. c
      chuckl RE: link_930 Jul 24, 2008 07:56 PM

      I generally cook for 3, but I would think you could cook a nice risotto in a nice small saucier, like this one from sitram

      http://shopping.msn.com/prices/shp/?i...

      1. l
        lcool RE: link_930 Jul 25, 2008 05:49 AM

        We were at Corning last year.In the outlet store the selection of single serving oven ware was well represented.
        As far as sauce pans etc,try calphalon.I have noticed a few small and affordable things,
        less than the current price on most high end brands.

        1. paulj RE: link_930 Jul 25, 2008 10:30 AM

          When I started cooking for myself I bought an 8" iron skillet, a 2qt Revereware pan, and a 1 1/2qt pyrex casserole. The pyrex lid fit the skillet. That was a good combination.

          Now I cook for 2, and have a wider range of pans. My smallest sauce pan is a #1 aluminum one from a restaurant store. I think of it as 1 qt, though filled to the brim it is more like 7 cups. It is fine for cooking 1/2 - 1 cup of rice, especially Japanese style. I also have several 8" nonstick skillets, again restaurant quality. I found a lid at the restaurant supply that fits these.

          Many restaurant items are cooked, or at least finished, in single serving sizes. So they use many pans in that 8" size. With metal handles (or removable rubber grips) they can go from stove top to oven.

          There are some small baking pans intended for use in toaster ovens. Also look at ramekins and baking dishes for souffl├ęs. These come in 5 and 8oz sizes.

          1. w
            weezycom RE: link_930 Jul 26, 2008 05:49 PM

            amazon has some excellent deals on cookware and a great search function.

            This is the grouping of 1-quart saucepans (245 results). I happen to have that very first Calphalon and it's a very useful little pot.

            http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_k?u...

            1. saltwater RE: link_930 Jul 26, 2008 09:46 PM

              What kind of cooktop do you have? I have small Revereware sauce pans, which work nicely, but only on my new stove. My old one had large disks for the sealed burners (gas). They were so large that the flames licked around the pans and not under them. Be sure this won't be a problem for you with tiny pans. You can cook rice in a microwave, and it reheats very nicely in there as well.

              1. m
                mpalmer6c RE: link_930 Jul 27, 2008 03:26 PM

                For cooking small amunts of rice, etc., I got a small All-Clad from Cookware and More, They sell rregulars with very minor blemishes at something like a 30 percent discount. Works great and looks nice. If you like, scroll down here:

                http://www.cookwarenmore.com/display....

                1. Chuckles the Clone RE: link_930 Jul 27, 2008 08:58 PM

                  I've got a 6-inch Lodge cast iron frying pan which I use as the
                  single-serving roasting pan. I suppose you could use it as a
                  single-egg fryer too.

                  Also have a 1qt Revereware pot which mostly gets used only
                  for oatmail, hot chocolate, and the occasional hardboiled egg.
                  I'm not sure what it would be like to cook a risotto in it.

                  Both of these seem to be widely available.

                  1. c
                    cyberroo RE: link_930 Jul 29, 2008 11:02 AM

                    For baking dishes, you might like some of the Martha Stewart pieces at Macy's. I got a pair of little enameled cast iron dishes that I love, and I think they had a few pieces in a similar size.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: cyberroo
                      paulj RE: cyberroo Jul 29, 2008 11:21 AM

                      Another option is a Spanish or Portuguese cazuela, terra cotta baking dish.
                      http://www.tienda.com/table/cazuelas....
                      La Tienda also carries small 'paella' pans, steel or enameled pans under 8" in diameter.
                      I've seen items like this at CostPlus (import) stores.

                      1. re: paulj
                        MMRuth RE: paulj Jul 29, 2008 11:28 AM

                        The cazuelas are a great idea - I use round ones (maybe the 6 inch?) for making gratins for the two of us, and actually often use a larger oval one to roast a chicken.

                    2. m
                      mlgb RE: link_930 Jul 29, 2008 07:46 PM

                      As far as I know, you can still buy new Revereware 1 qt. lidded pots. Try Amazon.

                      Also try your local Target store.

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