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Jan 11, 2009 07:36 AM

Do I need anything else?

I would like to have a well-rounded assortment of cookware and it seems like a lot of stores are having sales, so look at my list below and let me know what you think.

-Calphalon non-stick 10 3/4" skillet- part of set about 14 yrs. old; is still NS, but needs PAM
-Calphalon NS 8 1/2" skillet- not used as often, has retained NS properties
-Calphalon non-stick 1 1/2 qt. sauce pan
-Calphalon non-stick 2 1/2 at. sauce pan
-Calphalon non-stick 5 qt. Dutch oven
-Calphalon non-stick 8 qt. stock pot
-Cuisinart 11 3/4" hard anodized non-stick saute pan with lid
-Le Creuset 10 1/2" black enamel coated skillet--new piece
-Le Creuset 5.5 qt. Dutch oven--**My favorite new piece

Also, do I need something stainless steel? If so, what are the advantages? I don't want to have to use a lot of oil in the pan.

Thanks in advance.


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  1. wok - but that's me. Can't live without it.

    1. Ovemproof saute pan with cover

      1. Nice list. Depends on what you like to cook and your storage space, only you know what other pots and pans you might need. I would ask myself: when I cook in the past 6 month, have I needed a particular pan that I don't have on numerous occasions? Maybe a saute pan with a lid?

        7 Replies
        1. re: PBSF

          I've got the saute pan which is the Cuisinart and has a lid which I am guessing is stainless steel. It is non-stick, so I when I try to sear meat, I am not getting a nice "crust". Is stainless good for that?

          1. re: NAWLINSGAL

            You will get the best crust with a cast iron. Heavy bottom stainless will give a good crust if one uses high heat and not crowd the bottom of a pan, but does need more oil/fat than a non-stick. On occasions, I use a non-stick All Clad over high flame to brown meat and it gets a decent crust but no fond, which is adds flavor to jus and sauces. Other than that, I don't use much non-stick so I can't be of more help to that.

            1. re: PBSF

              I would like to try searing steaks in my LC skillet. Do you have to preheat the pan with the oil in it, or can you add the oil later? I am afraid of ruining the pan since it's expensive.

              1. re: NAWLINSGAL

                Note that LC says to use low to
                medium heat only. For some people,
                searing means using high heat.

                1. re: mpalmer6c

                  Searing means high temperature -- cast iron can get awfully hot on medium heat if you give it time. The pan will be heated more evenly, too.

                  A great steak (that is to say, well-marbled) shouldn't need any oil -- there should be enough fat in the steak to allow it to release when it is at the proper doneness.

                  That's the theory, and it is true enough, but if the cut is lean, a little oil will ensure a timely release. Nothing worse than having to crowbar off a steak as it quickly goes from medium to well-done.

                2. re: NAWLINSGAL

                  Cast iron LC skillets are indestructible. I've had a 12 inch for over 30 years and will probably last another hundred. Heat it up hot, almost smoking, add a little oil, making sure it coats all of the bottom, then sear. You can also add oil and then heat the skillet; I don't think it makes a difference to the pan.

              2. re: NAWLINSGAL

                I have a Calphon hard-anodized with a lid which works great for so many things and is ovenproof. Have given it as gifts to both grown daughters.