Pots and Pans for gas stove
We're searching for some new cookware, probably a set. There is a sale ongoing now on Calaphon and Paderno at The Bay in Canada, so its a good time to pick up a $500-$600 set for about $200.
What I'm noticing is that a lot of the sets have a thick bottom, but then the sides are very thin. In my experience with my gas stoves, a lot of the time there is a lot of heat on the sides of the pot or pan. One of my gas stoves has burners with very large diameters, so it's very hard to keep the heat under the pots and pans.
With my cheaper hodge-podge collection of pots and pans, I'm often getting boiling along the sides of the pots, or burning along the sides of the pan. Is this normal? Won't I experience the same thing with most of these sets? I'm thinking that most of the cookware out there is just not designed for gas stove tops, and that I need to find a product that is. Am I out to lunch on this?
I've been reading the board enough to be able to address a couple of things:
1) Yes, I probably should pick up individual pieces of different materials, not a set of all the same material. But the price seems right and having things match is sometimes important for some reason that I don't fully understand, and
2) the tri-ply sets from Calaphon and All-Clad seem to continue the thickness up the sides of the pan, but these don't seem to be available to me right now within my budget.
I have some Paderno (probably the same ones the Bay is selling)....and I definitely experience that boiling along the sides that you are describing. The pots and pans that have behaved best with my gas stove are the inexpensive Ikea 365 pots and pans despite the thinner sides, believe it or not...YMMV. My All-Clads do well too...but pricey.
I was out shopping recently for a set for a wedding gift. I was left nothing short of stunned the way quality has fallen off and prices have sky rocketed for Calphalon and All-clad. The set I found I was totally impressed with?
Kirkland signature at Costco. Heavy stuff.
About $190 for the set.
I'm in San Diego for a day or two -- thought I'd check what Macy's has for sale. And William Sonoma. Any place else I should go? There is a place called "great news" which purports to have discount cookware, but the prices on their website don't seem that great. They seem to carry All Clad, so maybe I should go just to see it live-and-in-person.
Triply will definitely work better for you than disk-bottom with gas burners. I discovered the same issues with the sides overheating with my Emerilware when I switched to gas. After lots of shopping/comparing, I ended up with a $300 triply Surlatable set and added on an extra sauce pot and and stockpot with pasta insert in Tramontina triply from Walmart. com. I can't tell any difference between the two in the way they perform and there's little difference in weight or cleanup either.
Look at Tramontina's triply set at Walmart.com (not available in the store) for best price, Surlatable triply online at Surlatable.com, and also check the Costco website to see if they have the Kirkland triply set available. I would have bought the Kirkland set (it's universally well-liked) when I was looking but for some reason it wasn't available at that time. However, I heard from a friend it was back on the website recently. FWIW, I agree with you re: buying a set. It's a really good deal even if it has a piece or two you won't use. And you won't have to spend the next few months bargain-hunting for the individual pieces you want. Also, FWIW I have one Calphalon triply saucepan and an All-Clad one as well. More expensive and I don't think they offer any improvement in performance over the lesser-known brands, especially for the $$.
If there's visible flame on the sides of your pan then you need to turn down the gas -- or use a larger pot/pan. My cooktop has one oversize burner for large stock pots or sauteeing. I just keep smaller saucepans on the other burners.
There's no bargain if pans
won't work for you. As others suggest,
I'd look around for tri-ply pans on
sale. You can save over All-Clad.
For sauce pans, I mainly use Calphalon
anodized aluminum, which has stood
up well for 20-plus years.
I concur with the recommendations for the Tramontina TriPly performance. I have several pieces and they are outstanding. WalMart.com has the 8 piece set online for ~$150 (currently out of stock) and you can have them shipped to store for pick up. You can find individual pieces at Tuesday Morning but I think the best value is the set.
I have a professional level gas stove and use all kinds of cookware. I get the best performance out of cast iron (Lodge and LeCrueset), annodized aluminum (Calphalon Commercial/Professional), and clad stainless steel. I have some disc bottom and they work just fine, provided the flame doesn't creep up the sides.
To followup -- I ended up buying the Paderno Fusion 5 (5-ply stainless) set at The Bay for 50% off - so $500 instead of $1000 for an 11 piece set. Very happy with it so far. This set does NOT have the mounted disc bottom, and works wonderfully on the gas stoves. Also the handles are surprisingly cool.