Induction compatible cookware
(yes I have read the old thread - my questions after having read that tend more to specifics)
I'm about to purchase an induction range for my new apartment and I need cookware. Here are the criteria:
- must be able to move between cooktop and oven
- will always be handwashed, never in a DW (don't have one!)
- I care about what things look like - I'm all about the pretty/high-end cookware, shallow as that is
- price not an issue
- would rather spend more on a few fab pieces than more on many meh pieces
- specific brand/line recommendations very much appreciated!
- little things that improve the convenience and use count (easy-pour lips, joints that dont get gunk jammed into them etc.)
I want something long lasting, good looking and am willing to pay for it, and it needs to work (well, not just adequately) with induction. I currently have 3 LC dutch ovens, but all are medium sized. I need a set of saucepans (small, medium, large), a stockpot, a frypan (maybe 2 in different sizes) and a saute pan, at the least. Recommendations for other pieces are welcome - I love to cook but am a noob at the specifics of the equipment.
I know you're in the trade, and, since you sound like you're buying the Chantal Copper Fusion, perhaps you know: How thick is the copper layer?
Also, keep us posted on how well the enamel lining works. Four of six Washington State retailers of that line have given it up because of returns related to the linings being more-stick than non-stick.
Since I use it and love it you'd have to say I am biased. The only customer I have had who did not like it said it was too heavy. The enamel, unlike Swiss Diamond, is going to stick until it is ready to let go, same as with many pans. I don't have a problem with this and have had had no returns with that complaint. The only queries post sale is that sometimes, depending what has been cooked, it that the interior gets a cloudy film. Bar Keeper's friend takes care of that in a snap. I love that it is also dishwasher safe and oven safe.
As with most cookware as I mentioned above, sticking is often a problem, the pan does need to be at the proper temp. and the cook has to have the patience to wait until what they are cooking is ready to turn. Not to turn this in to a how to tutorial and get overly long, most quality cookware does not need high temps. Medium heat is fine. When what you are cooking is ready to be turned, sticking won't be an issue. Patience is a virtue here. I do keep 3 sizes of Swiss Diamond for quick sautees. SD is the only non-stick cookware that really browns, but again, medium heat is plenty.
Copper thickness? I'll have to check. Our rep was in on my day off. BTW they have some very attractive colors coming out in their porcelain/stoneware.
I use bare cast iron for lots of things on my induction cooktop -- recommend buying Lodge and removing their pre-seasoning and building up your own or hunting down older US made (Griswold and Wagner) cast iron with machined cooking surfaces to get a non-stick experience. I have several skillets, a griddle and woks.
I've also fallen in love with LeCreuset's black satin interior treatment, which I'm finding is very non-stick and much more durable than Teflon-type coatings. Piece of cake to clean.
I just love the LC braisers with the black satin interior -- they can double as sauté pan and skillet in many cases, if you're keeping your pieces to a minimum. But LC also makes colorful fry pans and sauté pans with the same interior. And a crepe pan, which can double as a griddle. LC also makes a great omelet pan with Silverstone interior.
Candy, are you talking about the M'Cook line by Mauviel?
Thanks for recs, I will be seriously checking out Chantal, Demeyere and the Mauviel line as well as specific LC and Lodge pieces (I have been eyeballing the LC braisers for awhile - now I have an excuse!).
Is removing the preseasoning on Lodge pieces difficult? I havent heard of this so just wondering.
Thanks for the recs!!!
The Mauviel is just plain carbon steel. Not pretty, waiting for lots of use so it becomes well seasoned. My main piece is a crepe pan. It looks pretty industrial, cooks like a dream as does the Chantal.
I miss Montreal. Have to get back before too long. Unfortunately this summer is requiring we replace the whole HVAC system in our house. Indiana summers are miserable without central AC. No Montreal on the agenda this summer.
Not at all difficult. Check out the left hand side of this website for tips: Reconditioning is what you'd be doing -- http://blackirondude.blogspot.com/
I should also mention, I don't use oil to season my cast iron because, like Lodge's pre-seasoning, which they do with oil, I find it leaves a tacky residue. I use fat that is solid at room temperature, generally lard (or bacon grease) or coconut oil (whether its solid depends on how warm your room is.) Crisco isn't too bad.
I think only the LC Matte Black braisers have the black satin interiors. If that's what you decide you want and you have difficulty locating them, let me know.
I've been using an induction cooktop for, I guess, 6 or 7 years now.
IME, Lodge plain cast iron works great, as does Le Creuset enameled cast iron.
Carbon steel frying pans also work great.
Silit Silargan ceramic-coated steel cookware is not well known, but excellent.
For nonstick frying pans, I like Swiss Diamond (they have an induction-capable line), Archetun, and De Buyer CHOC induction. Infinite Circulon is also induction-capable.
Tramontina stainless steel cookware (either tri-ply or disk-bottom) works great with induction, as does the Calphalon Contemporary SS line. Also Paderno (Italy), Fissler and WMF (Germany), Cristel (France), Cuisinart Mulitclad Pro, Henckels Classic Clad, Bourgeat's Excellence series, Demeyere (Apollo, Atlantis, Sirocco), and All-Clad (the Stainless line and the updated Copper-Core line).
Since induction is more popular in Europe than in the US, you will probably find more high-quality induction cookware from European manufacturers.
I have no personal experience with this line, but the Mauviel Induc'Inox line was raved about on eGullet and lavishly praised here. Unfortunately it has been discontinued in the US, although The Google will show that it is still available in Australia, perhaps also so in Canada.
My understanding is that, while it worked very, very well on induction, it did poorly on other hobs, perhaps because of its SS+carbon+SS construction. And that Mauviel discontinued it in favor of the more versatile M'Cook line.
kaleokahu anent Induc'Inox: " My understanding is that, while it worked very, very well on induction, it did poorly on other hobs, perhaps because of its SS+carbon+SS construction."
Although we now have an induction-only cooktop, formerly we had a cooktop with two induction burners and two ribbon radiant burners. On the ribbon radiant burners, our Mauviel Induc'Inox splayed side ("Windsor" or " tout fait") saucepan performed as wells or better than any other piece of cookware that we used on those burners. It was, and remains, my favorite pot for making oatmeal; my spouse prefers the Induc'Inox to our cast iron skillet for braising a steak. For thinner concoctions, like heating up a can of chicken noodle soup, the Induc'Inox is a fine choice as well, but either our Demeyere Apollo vertical walled saucepan or our Zani Karen vertical walled saucepan is a better choice, because more of the heat that the induction inverter generates in the pot ends up in the soup and less goes into the kitchen.