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Aug 21, 2013 02:41 AM

Praise for de Buyer

Just wanted to share how impressed I am with my de Buyer carbon steel pans. I used my brand new la lyonnaise blue steel (the thinnest ones) pan this morning to fry an egg, something I was quite nervous about doing after failing miserably with my CI skillet. The pan was only seasoned once with the potato peel and then lard method, so I added perhaps a bit more butter than I would normally like (about 1-1/4 tsp), cracked the egg into the pan, and crossed my fingers. I was absolutely delighted when I tried jiggling the egg around and it slid! Cleanup was so easy as well, just ran it under some hot water and brushed a few times with a scrubbing brush (just out of habit, there were no bits stuck on at all), wiped down, and done.

I used to be a CI fan, but after experiencing this, I'm seriously considering ditching my 9" Lodge for a 9" Mineral B.

I also have a heavier Force Bleu 12" skillet which I use for larger meals and have nothing but praise for either.

*happy rant over*

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  1. :) Great to hear your experience.

    My experience is that smooth surface carbon steel (like DeBuyer) takes much shorter time to season than rough surface cast iron. In my case, it took about 1-2 seasoning layers (10 min to 1 hour worth) to make carbon steel to be nonstick, but cast iron took more than 1 week to get to the same point. On the other hand, the seasoning layer on cast iron is more stable than the seasoning on carbon steel.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Chemicalkinetics

      I haven't had my CS long enough to know how durable the seasoning is, but I can easily imagine why seasoning would "stick" better to the rougher surface of the CI. However, it seems that even using my CI for 6 months hasn't been able to get it to the same level of non-stick-ness as just 1 layer of seasoning on the CS!

    2. I share your happy rant. My old DeBuyers are old enough I have no recollection as to how they were seasoned, but they are quite nonstick, especially the dedicated omelet pan. I have a new 11" and all I did was pour in about a sixteenth inch of oil, heat slowly to just smoking, wipe clean, and repeat.

      5 Replies
      1. re: tim irvine


        Was your new 11" pan nice and slippery after that easy seasoning?

        1. re: DuffyH

          Slippery enough that I can fry eggs in a little butter and oil, lift them out intact, easily, and wipe the pan clean.

          1. re: tim irvine

            <Slippery enough that I can fry eggs in a little butter and oil, lift them out intact, easily, and wipe the pan clean.>

            So, like pucks on ice, then? Works for me; that's how I like my CS to behave. I'll try that seasoning when I get around to picking up a frypan.

            1. re: DuffyH

              Well, a little better than pucks on ice. I miss hockey. Never watched a game, but it is so much fun to play.

              1. re: tim irvine


                Aw, sweet man, I can't thank you enough for taking me down memory lane. My dear Dad was born in Michigan, played his share of pond hockey, and taught me to skate. Fast forward, he's 69 and I'm taking him to see his first pro game, Kings vs. his beloved Red Wings. It was just me and Dad, with killer seats, and I'm crying now at the memory of that evening.

                Dad taught me to PLAY. He loved amusement parks, carnivals, beaches, playgrounds, anyplace people came together to have a good time. County fairs were a hoot with Dad. He'd ride anything, and dare you to do it with him. While eating something fried on a stick. For his 71st b'day, we went to Magic Mtn. in Ca with my Dude and our son and daughter-in-law. I got the men to ride the Dive Devil, a triple bungie sort of thing. 3 generations, having a ball. When they were done, I asked Dad how he liked it. "I thought it would be more scary", was his reply. THAT'S my Dad, and I miss him every day.

                Thanks, Tim. <3

      2. My Force Blue and Carbone crepe pans are quite slippery, but they seldom get wet. Mostly I wipe them out and store them. I think it helps develop the seasoning layers.

        I think I use them a bit differently than most owners. I don't often use them to sear things. I'm used to doing that with SS and CI and old habits die hard. Mostly it's the same things I used my old non-sticks for; eggs, grilled sandwiches, breakfast sausages, skillet potatoes, crepes, sautéed veggies and such. But I'm ok with that, since I bought my DeBuyers to replace my Teflon pans.

        I share your happy rant and could on for pages about how wonderful these pans are. I need to get me a Force Blue frypan.

        2 Replies
        1. re: DuffyH

          I may stick to searing in my CI actually, I'm a bit leery about putting the Force Bleu on high heat given it's only 2mm thick... Or that could just be an excuse for me to get that Mineral B later on. :P

          1. re: Sirrith

            Indeed! I recently "over dried" my FB when I left it on 7/10 (med-high) for 45 minutes to dry it. Oops. I was lucky, it only warped about 2-3mm. Cold oil still sits where it's poured, hot oil will slide towards the handle, but not completely.

            As I said, lucky, and I would never put it on high heat. I tried a Tim Love branded Mineral frypan and found it really heavy, much like my CI. I already store my CI skillet, CI round griddle and my baking stone on top of my Breville oven. I really don't need to add another heavy pan to that pile. Yup, a FB about 9" will do me nicely.

        2. Hi, Sirrith:

          Good, glad they work so well for you! de Buyer is a venerable (1830) and venerated company. As far as I know, all of their approximately 3000 products are good.


          4 Replies
          1. re: kaleokahu

            But I've heard their induction converter disk sucks. ;)

            1. re: DuffyH

              Hi, Duffy:

              Well, even de Buyer can't be expected to excel at making a purse of a sow's ear. It's a mitigation-of-damages exercise, I think, not unlike an 8-track to 15ips converter.


              1. re: kaleokahu


                ROFL! Pax, friend. We're both bad, bad people. ;)

            2. re: kaleokahu

              I may have a soft spot for them as their factory in the Val d'Ajol is very close to my family home, although I haven't yet had the chance to visit :)

            3. Hello,

              Regarding the de Buyer pans, does anyone have experience with the "Paris monument" style handle? See it here on Amazon:

              I've been thinking about ordering one of these pans based on on the wonderful reviews here on CH, but I just noticed today that there are two types of handles. Here's a link to the other handle style -

              To anyone who has experience with one or the other (or both), what is your take on the handle? Other than the handle, the pans seem to be identical.

              13 Replies
              1. re: MrsPatmore

                The original handle does not have the plastic button and is uncoated, like this:


                The Mineral and Mineral B has button and is coated:


                The French Collection is just a special edition. It spans from stainless steel multi-clad to carbon steel cookware.

                They are all made of the same material. My gut instinct push me toward normal handle, but there is nothing wrong with the French Collection handle

                1. re: MrsPatmore

                  I love the traditional handle. The width is great for a little leverage on a larger pan.

                  1. re: MrsPatmore

                    I personally prefer the original non-fancy handle. It just looks better to me.

                    1. re: Sirrith

                      I have ordered two of the "Parisian monument" handled pans via Amazon. The 8" and 11". I'll report back regarding my experience with the handles. I have tendinitis in my dominant wrist, so it will be interesting to me to see how these pans perform in daily use. I have All-Clad now, and I avoid the using them as I find the handles unwieldy, to say the least.

                      1. re: Sirrith

                        Hi, Sirrith:

                        The Eiffel handles may help sell some more pans in America, but I wonder: If All-Clad made commemorative handles shaped like our Statue of Liberty, would Americans be more likely to buy the commemoratives?

                        On second thought, A-C's handles are so ergonomically atrocious, perhaps that's not a good analogy.


                        1. re: kaleokahu

                          Hey Kaleo,

                          <On second thought, A-C's handles are so ergonomically atrocious, perhaps that's not a good analogy.>

                          Right on!

                          Regarding the Eiffel handles, they look rather sharp and poke-ish to me. Ouch.

                          1. re: DuffyH

                            "Regarding the Eiffel handles, they look rather sharp and poke-ish to me. Ouch."

                            I've ordered two of these pans. I kind of like the look of the Eiffel handles, but then again, I've never seen either of the pans in person. Nonetheless, if these handles are either sharp or poke-ish, I assure you that I will be returning them for a refund. I have more than my fair share of cookware with awkward handles (All-Clad, meh). I don't understand why any high-end brand finds it difficult to design a comfortable handle, when places like Macy's sell a mid-priced brand (Tools of the Trade, a/k/a Belgique) with extremely comfortable handles. Compare:

                            I just bought a large set of Belgique to send off with youngest child getting first apartment at university. Very nice quality, and great value IMO. This stuff goes on sale at least once per month.

                            1. re: MrsPatmore


                              Couldn't agree more. I do think the Eiffel handles are lovely to look at. Thinking about it more, it wouldn't make sense to design a pan that's a PITA to hold. We'll set aside my impression of All-Clad's PITA-ish handles for the moment. I do like the handles on my DeBuyer steel.

                              You are so right about mid-price (and lower!) brands often having the most comfortable handles. Why the more serious cook (if you measure seriousness by $$ spent on cookware) should be subject to sub-par handles is a mystery to me.

                              Lucky child, and a very nice Mom. :)

                              1. re: DuffyH

                                So my two pans arrived (an 8" and 11") with the Eiffel handles.

                                These are my initial observations: First, the Eiffel handles are extremely comfortable. The bottom of the Eiffel handle has very smooth "finger grooves" (see photo) and the finish is very nice. Comfort-wise, these handles have the typical All-Clad handle beat by a long shot (see photo for comparison to typical AC handle). I don't have any experience with the "regular" de Buyer handle so I have no basis to compare those two. I find the Eiffel design to be aesthetically appealing but that's a matter of personal taste, not utility.

                                Second, these pans are much heavier than the same size AC stainless steel pans but not as heavy as my Lodge cast iron pans of comparable size. I'm able to wrist flip in the de Buyer 8" but the 11" is too heavy for me. YMMV.

                                Third, seasoning these pans was a breeze. I removed the bees wax film with Barkeeper's friend and a sponge, and dried carefully. I coated the entire pan with a very thin film of grapeseed oil, heated until smoking, wiped out the pan and let it cool. I repeated this process three times (total). The pans are now completely nonstick. In fact, I've been making eggs in them every day with no sticking, just a tiny pat of butter. This process was much easier (and a lot faster!) than seasoning new cast iron.

                                Fourth, in my limited use of the pans (I've only had them about a week), they definitely heat evenly and there are no hot spots. However, similar to CI these pans retain heat longer than stainless. They are slower to heat up and cool down than stainless but seem to be more responsive than my CI.

                                In sum, overall I'm very satisfied. IMO they represent a very good value - I think that I paid less than $100 for both of them on Amazon. OTH, I remember paying more than that for just one 8" AC copper core fry pan.

                                I hope this information is of some use to my fellow cookware addicts. LOL

                                1. re: MrsPatmore

                                  PS I just looked at the photos that I posted and they really don't do justice to the finish of the de Buyer handle. The handles are completely smooth all the way around, and the angle is comforting to the wrist (and I say that as someone with carpal tunnel syndrome). The handle just "feels good" unlike the sharp and awkward AC handles.

                                  1. re: MrsPatmore

                                    Thanks for the update. It is very informative that the tower handle is comfortable.

                                    <these handles have the typical All-Clad handle beat by a long shot >

                                    Many handles beat All Clad handle by a long shot. :) This is a low hurdle.

                                    < This process was much easier (and a lot faster!) than seasoning new cast iron.>

                                    True. My experience as well.

                                  2. re: MrsPatmore

                                    Thanks for posting those pics, and for your review.

                                    Looking at the handles in your photos, it's clear that they are indeed not only very pretty, but shaped well, too. I really like the finger grooves on the underside. Nice detail.

                                    What a difference from the initial pics I saw on the DB website that made me think they would be sharp and uncomfortable. From your photos I can see they're anything but.

                                    I think those Eiffels look very whimsical. :)

                                    1. re: DuffyH

                                      I agree with duffyH - wanted nothing to do with those handles.. but after those photos, i'm thinking they might be fun! WHAT? ANOTHER EXCUSE TO BUY MORE DE BUYER!!?!?!?!