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What's new in your kitchen?

I will start please give your comments if you have experience with the same cookware. Also which online stores have you had the best luck with and the best customer service.

de Buyer 20cm/8" mineral B frying pan(Chefs Catalog)
de Buyer 26cm/10" mineral B frying pan(Chefs Catalog)
de Buyer 32cm/12 1/2" mineral B frying pan(Chefs Catalog)
de Buyer 26cm/10" Mineral B Element Iron Crepe Pan(J.L Hufford)
de Buyer 24cm/9 1/2" blue steel crepe pan(Williams and Sonoma)
LamsonSharp Pro Walnut 5" x 6" Hamburger Turner, stiff (Cutlery and More)
LamsonSharp Pro Walnut Sandwich Spreader, wave edge (Cutlery and More)
LamsonSharp Pro Walnut Pie/Cake Server (Cutlery and More)
Berard Olive Wood Terra Collection Spoon - 13"(Chef's Arsenal)
Berard Olive Wood Cook Spoon - 14"(Chef's Arsenal)
Berard Olive Wood Large Curved Spatula with 12 Holes 13"(Chef's Arsenal)
Paderno World Cuisine Blue Steel Cake Pan 9.5" (Amazon.com)
Williams-Sonoma Stainless-Steel Measuring Cups & Spoons

 
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  1. You've spent a wad of money unnecessarily. Price of equipment does not correlate well with successful results.
    Good luck with your frying, stirring, and flipping.

    2 Replies
    1. re: greygarious

      It was not cheap, but the quality is just awesome.

      1. re: greygarious

        You could spend a whole lot more money on pans that de Buyer. Carbone Plus is just as good as Mineral B, IMO, and a bit cheaper,, but it's not like Mineral B is even in the same price range as Demeyere.

      2. Congratulations. Whatever floats your boat.

        I have become a convert to olive wood as it is not as prone to become covered in black mold as the softer, fuzzier woods are down here in the Sunshine State.

        1. I got a Presto Multi Cooker....deep fries, boils, sears, braises.....it's actually astonishingly useful.

          1. New cookware is fun - enjoy it VV and see what "sticks" in your batterie - Currently my most fascinating new acquisition is a carbon steel wok - how did I live without this?

            5 Replies
            1. re: JTPhilly

              Thanks, Which one did u get? I'm currently looking

              1. re: VeganVick

                LOL the only one that looked like a "wok" to me in the cluttered kitchenware aisle at the Chinese grocery, it was the only one of its kind there sitting on the floor

                subsequent research told me It is a POW style wok

                It has a welded on hollow metal handle and what appears to be a slightly thickened flat bottom

                It was covered in a horrid black lacquer that took some work to get off but otherwise I have really enjoyed it - very cheap like $14

                1. re: JTPhilly

                  What on earth is a POW style wok?

                  I have a wok with a flat bottom called a Joyce Chen Peking pan- I didn't buy it in Chinatown but at Quincaillerie Dante, an Italian kitchen shop - hunting shop that used to also be a hardware store, hence its name. Cost about the same as yours. I love it, but it isn't new.

                  1. re: lagatta

                    it looks just like this one handle wok

                    http://www.wokshop.com/HTML/products/...

                    aka Peking Pan

                    no idea what "pow" references

                  2. re: JTPhilly

                    <LOL the only one that looked like a "wok" to me in the cluttered kitchenware aisle>

                    That's how I'd choose it, too. Find the shape that works, we'll never go wrong. :)

                    Mine seems to be called a "stir fry pan".

              2. Its nice to get new stuff for cooking. I have a Lamson that I use all the time with cast iron. I like.

                The only mail order place I've ever used for cookware is Amazon.

                I buy most of my stuff frankly at Home Goods. I have a rather nice collection of useful things.

                1. A two speed stick mixer; don't know how I lived with out it?

                  1. It took me a while to season my de Buyer (I switched to induction a year ago) but I really love them and I thought they were reasonable priced. I didn't have luck with the crepe pan (the setting of the induction had more to do with it) but now that they are seasoned, they are used multiple times a day. Your picture looks like you'll have a lot of fun!!

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Jamie_Morgan

                      Yes tons of fun. I have a stack of cook books that makes cooking enjoyable. For a long time I did not enjoy cooking now I look forward to it.

                    2. OMG, what isn't new? In the last 3 months, I've bought a GE Profile slide in induction range, new granite countertops, new sink, new pre-rinse faucet, new under sink water filter, painted the kitchen cabs, added new door pulls and oh, yeah, bought me some cookware. Last summer we retiled the floor and added a new island with a Boos maple top. All of it has been DIY except the granite.

                      The cookware is a mix of Vollrath Optio and Tribute (foodservicewarehouse), Mauviel M'Stone (black friday sale on an Amazon affiliate), deBuyer Carbone (West Elm), Invoca frypan (thick Italian aluminum from TJ Maxx), Zwlling Henckels Spirit sauté pan (Amazon Warehouse) and a no-name 10" commercial clad frypan from Sam's Club.

                      13 Replies
                      1. re: DuffyH

                        Love your mix of pots! I love an eclectic mix of almost everything. I've got to check into the Vollrath Optio, except I really only need a teakettle right now.

                        I just ordered a set of Wedgwood china tonight. That is where I am spending a chunk of change. I can't wait to get it.

                        1. re: sueatmo

                          Lucky lady, Sue. Wedgewood is timeless, heirloom worthy. I know you'll enjoy it for many years. Sounds like a good place to spend your money.

                          Thanks to people like you, when it comes to cookware I have learned to embrace the cheap, after many years of spending top dollar for stuff. And I can't say I'm sorry, as it's all at least as good as anything else I've owned. I did get lucky on my Optio purchases. Foodservice warehouse sent me a dented lid, which they replaced with a different size, letting me keep the original, which was only slightly dinged along one rim, no harm to function at all. Then my 4 qt. saucepan arrived with a small dent in the side, which got me another one of the same. I felt bad for them, but did suggest better packaging would help in the future. All in all, it turned out to be an even better bargain than I expected, which is saying a lot, since I got the stuff for a song.

                          Now if only they had a kettle for you, you could likely get two or three for the price of one. Seriously, the Oxo Uplift gets some good reviews. If you want a traditional looking kettle, there's the Demeyere or the Sori Yanagi from Japan. For half the price of those two, there's the Primula Catalina, which is pretty cool looking in a squatty kind of way. I know, you just splurged on some gorgeous china, but you've been waiting a long time for your tea kettle.

                          1. re: DuffyH

                            May I suggest that you get an electric kettle? They are much more efficient and faster than a cooktop kettle. Also you don't have to get it out of the way when cooking so it won't get spattered. I have a beautiful copper kettle from Castle Copper in Ireland, I was constantly having to polish it. When I got the electric kettle the copper was put away. I may give it to my niece this year.

                            1. re: Candy

                              When my (late) mum was staying with relatives in the US, she was astonished that nobody had an electric kettle. There are very few Canadian households without one.

                              I'm sure most Irish people use electric teakettles as well. The beautiful copper ones are mostly decorations nowadays.

                              1. re: lagatta

                                I have one...sort of. It's called a Keurig K-Cup thingy. Not what you had in mind? ;)

                                1. re: DuffyH

                                  I don't think so - these are kettles to make a good pot of tea.

                                  1. re: lagatta

                                    I knew that. I make tea with my Keurig, while the Dude uses it for coffee.

                                  2. re: DuffyH

                                    No, this is an electric tea kettle to boil water in. There are a number of them out there, and have been for a long time. I have a Chef's Choice brand. It is clear glass so I can see when the water is coming to a boil.

                                    1. re: Candy

                                      Candy,

                                      I do know the difference between an individual cup beverage machine and an electric tea kettle. Hence the "wink" emoticon at the end of my first post on the subject. Context is everything.

                                  3. re: lagatta

                                    We got our first one as a wedding gift. Neighbors were from Britain and gave us one. I would not be without one.

                                  4. re: Candy

                                    I would be interested in purchasing the kettle, if you haven't given it away yet.

                                    1. re: Candy

                                      I would love to buy your Castle kettle, if you haven't yet given it away. Please contact me, if interested in selling.

                                    2. re: DuffyH

                                      Another vote for electric kettles. Our Russell Hobbs is pushing thirty years. If it were to die I'd go on eBay and look for another just like it. It replaced, many years ago, a pricey Simplex. I like it way better.

                                      As for what is new in my kitchen, this morning I went to the restaurant supply place and got an eight quart plastic tub. Then I went to the farmers' market and got pickling cucumbers. I am going to make a tub of salt fermented half sours. Then I plan to tackle kimchi.

                                2. I have used Chefs Catalog numerous times over the years and have always thought their customer service was very good. An example was a scan pan frying pan that I loved had a handle that became wobbly at the connection point. Chefs replaced it with no problem. THe pan was prob 5 or 6 years old. I also have had very good experiences with Amazon's customer service. I have never been impressed with WS's prices or customer service.

                                  1. I love buying cookware, but sadly I don't need a darn thing. I will need a new range at some point, and I did get a new fridge last year.

                                    I HAVE moved on to giving stuff to the kids and buying things for them. Yay!

                                    1. I got a new refrigerator last week. We shopped around in any store that carried appliances. We got a new Samsung model. It had not been put out on the sales floor yet. The Samsung that I wanted was scarce but the sales man was glad to take our money. I like having the ice in the door and not taking up space in the freezer. The shelves slide out a bit (not all the way) and it makes finding stuff at the back easier. It is a side by side and is larger on the inside than my old fridge. I'm happy with it.

                                      10 Replies
                                      1. re: Candy

                                        I just bought a new Samsung fridge also. They delivered it today. My old Kenmore died last week. The refrigerator stopped cooling but the freezer was cold as hell. Go figure. It was 15 yo which I thought was middle age but everyone told me that's ancient nowadays.

                                        I really liked the LG's but they were outrageously priced, imho. Also I was afraid because they had a recall or class action suit on them due to too hot bulbs melting things. Funny thing is, try to find any refrigerators that people haven't complained about on Consumer Affairs, it's impossible! Samsung was rated pretty highly by CR.

                                        I have bad water in my town so I didn't buy water/ice in the door. There is an icemaker in the freezer, but we didn't hook it up to the water line. My first French Door, so much better than my old huge monster door!

                                        http://www.samsung.com/us/appliances/...

                                        1. re: Jerseygirl111

                                          I had to get a side by side because of the island configuration in my kitchen. I also like that the water filter is easily accessible in the the bottom front. We don't have to pull it out to change it.

                                          1. re: Candy

                                            They make refrigerators so huge now, don't they?

                                            I live in a Cape built in the 60's and they had to take both my screen door and front door off to get it in. I was impressed with my delivery men. They lifted that sucker up (over 600lbs) so it didn't catch on my living room area rug as they wheeled it through.

                                            So far so good. We are loving it. Fingers crossed.

                                            1. re: Jerseygirl111

                                              lol JerseyGirl, I live in a Philly rowhouse built in the 1860s - nothing fits - Its like a hobbit house. When I rebuilt the kitchen I put a 3' door in the back just so I could get things in - of course they have nowhere to go LOL. I bought a fairly modest new refrigerator and its huge in my house but fill it.

                                              1. re: JTPhilly

                                                i'm having my samsung fridge delivered to my unit in a 2 family 1890 victorian monday. i have no idea how this is going to work. but they came and measured, and the thermador being delivered today would fit. they just don't know about all the wonky angles in the stairwell for the fridge.

                                              2. re: Jerseygirl111

                                                Good luck! My home was built in the 60's. We had a fire about 20 years ago and we remodeled and doubled the kitchen size. To get the refrigerator in a couple of weeks ago they had to remove the front door and the door from the hall to the kitchen. I was afraid it was not going to fit but we got it in. There is no space next to the wall. My DH had to remove the baseboard and it is flush against the counter on the other side.

                                                1. re: Candy

                                                  i know we have to remove doors from both the house and the fridge. and even then, it's anyones guess.

                                                  1. re: eLizard

                                                    One of the benefits of an older home is that it's sturdy as all heck! You know you're living in something that has survived many storms. Unfortunately, that and charm are usually the only benefits! Everything else is questionable: lead paint, asbestos, leaky windows, insufficient outdated electrical, tight spaces, ancient heating/plumbing systems, ghosts. Lol

                                                    1. re: Jerseygirl111

                                                      mine's built like a tank. real good bones.

                                                      i did have a lead paint inspection, and we had none. electric and windows were updated. no problems yet with plumbing or the supernatural!

                                                    2. re: eLizard

                                                      We got lucky. Our current home has double entry doors. In our last home we only had to remove a patio slider and the handles from the fridge.

                                          2. Chest freezer and a vacuum sealer - they are like my two new favorite friends

                                            7 Replies
                                            1. re: fldhkybnva

                                              SO envious. Um, I mean, happy for you!

                                              How many cubic feet?

                                              1. re: ellabee

                                                It's just two of us so I didn't want to go too big, 7 cu. ft. It's still barely half full but I am so happy I finally decided to buy one.

                                                1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                  Having gotten through two days of high winds without the power going out, my yearning is stronger than ever. 7 cu. ft. is just exactly what we're going for, and an upright (despite being less energy efficient, only thing that fits the space and I think easier to stay on top of what's where).

                                                  Many enjoyable dives in for great food!

                                                  1. re: ellabee

                                                    ellabee,

                                                    We had a large upright for many years. Because the door is opened so seldom, not more than once a day, on average, efficiency was really not the issue we thought it would be. I agree with you, thinking it's easier to know what's in the thing with an upright. At least, that's been my experience with Mom's chest freezer vs. our upright.

                                                    Postscript - We gifted it to our son two years ago, as his big brood needs it more, and only lives a block-and-a-half away, but we retained the two lower shelves for our own use. It's much more efficient for us now, hardly adds anything at all to our electric bill, LOL.

                                                    1. re: DuffyH

                                                      I keep a very handy online spreadsheet that gets updated everytime the freezer is open or closed. It's also nice because I can access it from anywhere to see what it's "in stock."

                                                      1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                        That's a very good idea. One friend with a chest freezer chose to buy baskets, and groups foods in them. Added benefit, they're easy to pull out to get to lower ones. He also keeps a list of what's where, but he's 'puter phobic and has his on a whiteboard with grids to represent the baskets. Clever, and it works for him.

                                                        We knew we could never be that organized. We could barely organize our wine cellar, and we LOVE wine. Our freezer was sadly a bit of a mess at times, despite our best efforts.

                                                        1. re: DuffyH

                                                          I've had both an upright and a chest freezer. They both have their pros and cons. The upright is a pain to stack irregularly shaped items like hams and there is always the risk of things falling out. Plus I never felt I could stuff it to the gills like I can the chest freezer, which came with built in dividers so it's easy to organize although reaching the bottom isn't easy since I'm not that tall.

                                            2. Nothing new here. Still like to look, but don't need ANYTHING at all. It feels great.

                                              6 Replies
                                              1. re: letsindulge

                                                I have never known that feeling, but so look forward to it. In the past, as soon as I got a kitchen looking just the way I wanted, with everything I wanted in it, I knew it was time to move. Now after almost 40 years of marriage, 8 homes and 10 rentals, we're finally staying put...we hope. :)

                                                The only thing left to complete our kitchen reno is painting the lower cabs and adding hardware to them. We expect to do that in a couple of weeks. Then it's on to the bathrooms! :)

                                                1. re: letsindulge

                                                  I don't need a thing, either, really, despite my freezer crush above.

                                                  [And today is one of those days (50mph winds, saturated soil, trees going over, neighbors losing power) that reminds me of the potential downside of an extra freezer.]

                                                  My newest kitchen item was $5 purchase that's made life much easier: a second set of measuring spoons that live in a jar on the worktable near the spice storage, for easy ingredient assembly. No more walking back and forth to the main prep area to get and put away measuring spoons, no missing the spoon I want because it's sitting in the mise en place filled with a spice...

                                                  1. re: ellabee

                                                    I hear you. I have four sets of measuring spoons, two metal, two plastic. Only the plastic have 1/8th tsp. Wonder why?

                                                    I really covet a second set of metal measuring cups. That's what I really need.

                                                    1. re: Jerseygirl111

                                                      Hey Jerseygirl111,

                                                      Do your plastic spoons also have a pinch measure? I think you really DO need these:

                                                      http://www.amazon.com/RSVP-Internatio...

                                                      I've got them in the evens, too. I use something from each set almost every day.

                                                      1. re: DuffyH

                                                        Ack! Those are awesome! Who knew a pinch was a standard measure? Lol

                                                        1. re: Jerseygirl111

                                                          And you thought you didn't need anything new! LOL

                                                2. What I most need right now is a control - cord for a Lifetime electric skillet I acquired. I have several cords for an electric wok and another electric pan I'll be discarding because it is non-stick and the t-fal is flaking, which is unsafe. I was so happy to get a heavy stainless steel electric skillet; hope it doesn't become a white elephant.

                                                  12 Replies
                                                  1. re: lagatta

                                                    Are those things submersible now? Mom's old Farberware wasn't, which was the only bad thing about it. Being stainless instead of nonstick, it sometimes took a little effort to clean, and it could be quite awkward trying to keep the electrical connections dry.

                                                    1. re: DuffyH

                                                      The one I have says it is fully immersible - submersible. It isn't very old; perhaps 20 years old or a bit less. Think its date is 1995.

                                                      The only bad thing about mine is that I can't use it without its thermostat-cord!

                                                      The inside of such a thing should be easy to clean: pour in a bit of water and warm it up a bit. Turn it off, unplug it and leave it covered overnight. I wanted a stainless pan as it gets a bit of that nice stuck stuff when browning meat for braises. Then one deglazes with wine, beer, lemon juice, stock, whatever. Real foundation of a braise.

                                                      1. re: lagatta

                                                        I don't braise, but I love me a good pan sauce, and sometimes I'd like something larger than my 6 qt sauté and my 12" frypan. Something the size of your skillet might work.

                                                        Or I could just work with I have and use two pans. But that's not my style. ;)

                                                        1. re: DuffyH

                                                          My as-of-now useless skillet is less big around than your 12" frying pan. It is about 10 inches inside and 11 outside. I wouldn't want a larger one. I have a vintage cast iron frying pan made in a town near Ottawa; it is older than I am, and I'm not young. I found too larger ones at charity bazaars, and since I didn't use them, gave them to friends. The largest cost 50 cents (Canadian) and was perfectly seasoned. The friend, from Argentina, is very happy, as she can properly grill dead bovine...

                                                          I live in a small flat, and have to avoid accumulation of duplicates. This pan (given to me) was a replacement for one I'm discarding for health reasons (flaking non-stick coating).

                                                          1. re: lagatta

                                                            lagatta,

                                                            I hope you can find the control for your pan. My 12" frypan only has an area of ~80 square inches, compared to the 100 inches for yours. My big sauté pan has it beat by a bit, but not a whole lot.

                                                            I hear you on not wanting a larger one, I don't like hauling out my big pans, preferring instead to cook with 10" frypans or my 3 qt sauté. I find them more user-friendly.

                                                            1. re: DuffyH

                                                              Yes, I really don't cook for crowds at my place any more. It is rare that I have more than three or four friends or relatives over at once. Larger dinner parties are usually at the homes of friends with a bit more room.

                                                              And while I'm certainly not lacking in strength, I have a touch of arthritis so very heavy cast-iron or other solid pans hurt my wrists a bit.

                                                              The Argentinean friend has a smaller flat than mine, but she likes the big skillet to grill dead beast a la plancha.

                                                    2. re: lagatta

                                                      I got rid of my elec. skillet because I never use it. I should do the same with my slow cooker, I don't know when the last time that I used it. It sits in my laundry room collecting dust. I'm a pressure cooker gal.

                                                      1. re: Candy

                                                        We are all different, I guess. I've used my (no longer safe) electric skillet very often, idem my slow cooker. Yes, sell it or give it to charity, or someone you know who wants one. It isn't earning its rent.

                                                        1. re: lagatta

                                                          I've got an electric griddle that I keep forgetting to use. Instead I'll pull out a couple of frypans, which is silly.

                                                          Maybe I should park it on the cooktop for a week or two. That's how I reminded myself I had a perfectly good (but never used) saucier. I made myself cook almost exclusively with it for a week. Now I love a good saucier and use mine frequently.

                                                        2. re: Candy

                                                          And I'm a slow cooker fan. but I mostly use them for soup in the winter, and for pulled chicken and pork all year long. The small 2 quart sizes are nice.

                                                          I suppose with my new range I ought to try these foods on the stovetop and in the oven, both are very good at not spreading heat throughout the kitchen; perhaps I could unload a few of my slow cookers.

                                                          1. re: DuffyH

                                                            I have a small one; an old model (probably the first model with a removable and soakable ceramic liner). Bought it for $1 at a community park sale, and brought it home in my bicycle bags (crockpot on one side, lid on the other).

                                                            Mostly used for soup, and I like the fact that the size is limited. It is just fine for making soup from about one not-too-big chicken, or some chicken legs. I've never really made pulled chicken or pork; it only became popular up here (Montréal) a few years ago.

                                                            I have made Caribbean curry goat in it - goat takes very long, slow cooking. It was very good.

                                                            1. re: lagatta

                                                              lagatta,

                                                              Usually I make the chicken or pork for tacos. Which I suppose makes it shredded, as opposed to pulled. Even though I pull it to shred it... never mind.

                                                              Some taco seasoning, some salsa, a pound of meat, in 4-6 hours we've got some damn fine tacos. The pork version should be outlawed it's so good. :)

                                                              I'll try anything Caribbean. Steak N' Shake has jerk burgers now...really good ones, too! Who knew?

                                                      2. Nothing for the moment as what I need to do the type of cooking I like I already have. The next step up (chambar vacuum, centrifuge, rotary evaporator, second circulator with insulated tank) would require significant capital expenditure and/or space requirements and I can't justify either right now.

                                                        I do peruse Cutlery and More on occasion just to see whether Kaiser goes on sale.

                                                        I'm not sure why you need a dedicated walnut hamburger turner, but whatever turns your crank. People ask why I want a centrifuge.

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. re: wattacetti

                                                          I wanted a turner to flip large pancakes 10" or more. It's a night and day difference in performance from what I was using. I'm also looking for a dedicated hash brown turner

                                                        2. A Hamilton Beech toaster, 2 Forschner paring knives and a 8" cast iron skillet.

                                                          1. We're reaching the completion of a kitchen reno, so there's lots that's new (KitchenAid fridge, Bosch dishwasher, finally an overhead exhaust fan instead of the useless downdraft we had before), but what I'm most excited about so far is my new coffee maker -- the Brew Express BEC 110. http://www.brewexpressdirect.com/prod... It has a direct water line, so it's self-filling. My old Technivorm is standing by on a shelf in my pantry for now. Yes, I LOVE the Technivorm, for all the reasons you've read about, here and elsewhere, but I just didn't have the right counter space for it with the new kitchen, so I decided to try the Brew Express. So far, so good. It's designed to meet the brewing standards of the SCAA, and, although I haven't done a side-by-side taste test, I'd say the Brew Express makes a really great, hot cup of coffee.

                                                            5 Replies
                                                            1. re: CindyJ

                                                              CindyJ,

                                                              I've never seen a self-filling coffee maker before but I've got to agree that it ranks way up there on the HCIT* scale. Several notches above the Miele/Bosch cutlery rack, even.

                                                              What fun you'll have!

                                                              *"How Cool Is That?"

                                                              1. re: DuffyH

                                                                You're right, Duffy, the coffee maker is totally cool. I'm not yet smitten with the Bosch cutlery rack.

                                                                1. re: CindyJ

                                                                  I've got to give Miele props on the cutlery rack. Theirs was first, and is still the best. It sits in a frame and lifts right out so the whole thing can be transported to wherever the cutlery is stored. It's a little thing, I know, but it made it so easy to keep my cutlery in a more logical location across the room from my DW.

                                                                  In my current kitchen, I only need to swivel to unload the cutlery, which is good because the Bosch rack (which is still WAY cool) doesn't lift out so easily.

                                                                  1. re: DuffyH

                                                                    It's the loading of that cutlery rack that still has me in the question of whether or not to use it. I'm afraid that if I just toss the cutlery onto the rack without aligning each piece neatly in a slot, it won't really get clean. OTOH, I don't find the position of the cutlery basket to be all that convenient; I'd much rather have it across the front of the bottom rack than on the side. It's also a matter of simply getting used to a new dishwasher.

                                                                    1. re: CindyJ

                                                                      Slots, baby. Slots! Yes, there's a bit of a learning curve to loading the rack, and a touch of OCD can be handy here, as you've no doubt seen. For me, it became like power windows on a car - once you have it you'll never go back, you know? I load mine grouped by type, as you'd expect. Salad forks together, soup spoons separated from iced tea spoons, etc... But still, one needs to get used to it. But it does become rather automatic in time.

                                                            2. right now my kitchen is four walls and a floor. we are renovating, so lots of new stuff to come starting with the first wave of appliances tomorrow. however, in anticipation of this reno i got a few things for our provisional kitchen in my office. how did i ever live without an electric kettle? also, got an electric griddle. love that, too.

                                                              3 Replies
                                                              1. re: eLizard

                                                                By the time you finish the reno some of your old stuff will feel new again, so there's that, too. :)

                                                                1. re: eLizard

                                                                  We used our electric kettle quite a bit during our reno, along with the microwave, a single burner unit and a Cuisinart Griddler.

                                                                2. because I really needed another piece of cast iron....

                                                                  picked up a 2qt stew pot with glass lid - marked "made in USA" only - perfect condition just needs a quick cleaning and seasoning - could not resist it because I don't have one that size

                                                                  I actually think it will be a useful little pot

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. re: JTPhilly

                                                                    <because I really needed another piece of cast iron....> + <...I don't have one that size>

                                                                    Perfectly valid reasons, especially for someone like you who loves cooking in cast iron. Enjoy! :)

                                                                  2. I got a new spatula ... the old one had an unfortunate encounter with the kitchen shears when I was using them to cut a pizza. The new one is appropriately thick ...

                                                                    1. Not necessarily new to my "kitchen" but with Spring now here, I recently purchased a new Weber grill (Genesis s330). I ordered off through amazon prime to save on delivery fees. It was definitely pricey but it works well and you can't beat the convenience of gas. Charcoal grills have superior flavor for sure but adding wood chips via a smoke box or aluminum foil packet comes close for me.

                                                                      http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004...

                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                      1. Hey Vick - glad to hear you're happy. lets hear more about what worked out well for you.

                                                                        what's new ?? 2 round and 1 square tart pans with (removeable bottoms), old square glass food storage containers (1940s), a big round baking stone (20") for the large oven, a 14" springform pan w/scalloped bottom - for rolls and sweet breads. plus some ....stuff. All @ different estate sales, around $ 20 for everything. All terrific quality.

                                                                        Best? 2 Le Cruset pans: blue exterior. 2-3 c. sauce-pan
                                                                        and large skillet w/wood handle Both needed a bit of cleaning and attention: both from Goodwill, $7 total

                                                                        what's new is what I passed along, to younger, newer cook-people: Sunbeam stand mixer from the 60s, big oval muti-purpose slow-cooker, extra cake pans, a big roasting pan, 2 pyrex glass casserole/multi purpose dishes, several flat baking sheets, a bag full of 'stuff' egg slicers, paring knives, veg peelers, an italian half-moon chopper,
                                                                        3 different ceramic oval bowls, 2 platters.... other stuff.

                                                                        One nephew's GF wants to cook more, as does the N., but they don't have much and the economy is awful. They both work and she wants to save $ by cooking @ home but doesn't really know how and has little hardware to work with. I was stunned by how much $ they spend on take-out and convenience food. I found them a decent blender for $5.

                                                                        Other N is a great cook - he got my cast iron saucier pan (only 1 ever seen). No enamel but it is a dream to use. I have more than enough CI, and he appreciates good tools.

                                                                        Lots of young (or new) cook-people need knowledge, experience and some decent tools - and a boost of confidence. Nasty food television has had a bad effect on them - scared of making mistakes and 'looking stupid' when fixing food. I didn't get this till I invited them in to cook w/me or helped them out at their place. They really anticipated that food was a 'competition' and they would get nasty comments and put-downs as we went along.
                                                                        WTH ?

                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                        1. re: kariin

                                                                          sounds like you did very well thrifting - it really is amazing the stuff you can pick up cheaply - equipping a kitchen o a budget or just looking for new toys thrift stores are great for kitchenware - the baking stone sounds great!

                                                                        2. Just got back from NYC 2 weeks ago and went to korin japanese cutlery store. While there i bought the last in inventory #6 Sugimoto chinese cleaver. It was quite a few pennies, but after a week of use it my new go to knife.

                                                                          1. I braved the restaurant supply store this week. Amazingly i escaped relatively unscathed. Although the jucuzzi size woks were fascinating i only picked up a pair of poultry shears, a wusthof pull through knife sharpener (sorry knife people i am learning to use my stone but need sharpened knives now) and a large plastic cutting board that will fit over half of my double sink, the point of the visit. I do know where i am buying my next blender. Commercial cookware shops have lots of great stuff for reasonable prices compared to box stores and often better quality. Always woth a visit.

                                                                            1. As of this afternoon... a lovely Le Creuset Mariner Star 5.5 qt french oven. One of only 1,925 made. Happy birthday to me!

                                                                              23 Replies
                                                                              1. re: Susangria

                                                                                Hippo Birdy 2 Ewes!
                                                                                Hippo Birdy 2 Ewes!
                                                                                Hippo Birdy Deer Susangria,
                                                                                Hippo Birdy 2 Ewes!

                                                                                I like those Mariner lids a lot. The compass rose appeals to the sailor in me.

                                                                                Duffy

                                                                                1. re: DuffyH

                                                                                  Thanks, Duffy! Technically it was last month, but nothing I purchased for myself in the past 5 weeks screamed "BIRTHDAY!" to me until this! I work in the commercial aviation field so the compass rose is part of my daily life.

                                                                                  I have wanted a 5.5 qt LC for a long time. I was traveling over the weekend and en route home I stopped at the LC store to eyeball a different pan and discovered they had one Mariner in the store. They gladly let me use my AAA card for a 15% discount so it wasn't even $20 more than a regular signature 5.5 qt french oven.

                                                                                  1. re: Susangria

                                                                                    The 5.5 is the best piece they ever made, IMO. Quit while you're ahead.

                                                                                    Happy Birthday.

                                                                                    1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                      Hey Kaleo,

                                                                                      Speaking of what's new in our kitchens, did you know your pan makes nice hash browns? I still want to know how you made it nonstick while avoiding nasty build-up of stuff on it. Literally nothing sticks to it. I've scrubbed it with a brush and soap; it still doesn't stick. But it does build fond and deglaze like a dream. How'd you do that?

                                                                                      If only it were more responsive. *sigh*

                                                                                      Duffy

                                                                                      1. re: DuffyH

                                                                                        Hi, Duffy:

                                                                                        I scour-cleaned it really, really well is all, and gave it a light wipe of oil. It still has 20+years of curses and tears clinging to it, too.

                                                                                        Have you seared a steak in it yet? Do that a few times, and you should fall back to Earth.

                                                                                        Only a 30F differential from center to edge?

                                                                                        Aloha,
                                                                                        Kaleo

                                                                                        1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                          Hey, Kaleo,

                                                                                          No steak... we do those on the grill, because they're manly and well, that's where manly things are cooked. But the wok has him rethinking that, he seemed to really enjoy the big heat and big smoke combo last night. Hope springs. I really like a pan-seared steak.

                                                                                          So you're saying the pan doesn't like steak? It sticks? Steak's on the menu for Saturday. I'm pretty sure, because it's this pan, he'll bring it inside and see what happens. Dude's eyeballing the pan lately, watching me cook in it, thinking it may have a place in our kitchen. Why is he all of a sudden elbowing his way into my kitchen?

                                                                                          Yup, 30º, pretty consistently. No cooking on the edges with this pan, but it's so big it shouldn't be an issue. Someone else suggested my low heat pre-heat likely helps with the nonstick thing. I can't think why that would be, but I don't care. Maybe it's helping with the heat spread a bit, giving it time. Maybe induction is magic. Yeah, let's go with that one.

                                                                                          What surface temp do you suggest before adding the steaks?

                                                                                          D

                                                                                          1. re: DuffyH

                                                                                            Oh, it'll prolly do steak fine; it's the accumulating crud from searing that gradually cuts down the nonstick.

                                                                                            You may find that my aggressive scouring of the interior over the years has removed some of the enamel, and therefore it's actually amenable to real seasoning.

                                                                                            My mom, the butcher's wife, had a way of CI pan frying NY strip and Spencer steaks, whereby the meat got a sizzling, crusty sear on one side, then the heat was turned completely off when the steaks were turned. I still can't replicate her perfect results.

                                                                                      2. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                        Thank you! I'm rather enjoying the spoils!

                                                                                  2. re: Susangria

                                                                                    That piece is BEEEEautiful!!! I have a bad case of pot envy!

                                                                                    1. re: CindyJ

                                                                                      And we now have an answer to the question of what LC was planning beyond changing colors. Expect more designs cast into the lids, and maybe figured knobbage...

                                                                                        1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                          Well, they certainly hooked me. I've been quietly lusting after it since it debuted. Funny thing, though, I have lots of LC and I did not have a 5.5 qt because my complete non-foodie mom gave me a 6 qt Martha Stewart enamel cast iron pot. Dark murky blue. I used it, but every time I did I would curse the fact it wasn't LC. So, the MS 6 qt is now in a box of stuff that my daughter will take to outfit her own kitchen.

                                                                                          Here's the funniest part about this... the next time my mom visits and I use the Mariner pot, she will undoubtedly comment about how much use I'm getting from the pot she got me... never, ever realizing it's not the same one.

                                                                                          1. re: Susangria

                                                                                            Just make sure that, whenever you use it, the lid's compass points toward Marseilles.

                                                                                            1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                              I'll hand that project off to FlyGuy. He can then put a mark on the stove at each burner. Excellent suggestion. I wonder if there's an app for the ipad that can calculate that.

                                                                                              1. re: Susangria

                                                                                                On second thought, point the star to Fresnoy-le-Grand. That's where your money is going.

                                                                                                1. re: Susangria

                                                                                                  Yes, it's called a compass. ;-)

                                                                                                  Seriously, check the app store. There's more than one free compass app.

                                                                                                  1. re: DuffyH

                                                                                                    I believe I have a compass app already loaded. I guess all I need are the coordinates for the foundry. Shazam!

                                                                                                    1. re: Susangria

                                                                                                      Google Maps will give you lat/long data.

                                                                                                      Go to the location, then right click nearby.
                                                                                                      Click "What's Here?"
                                                                                                      The result will include latitude and longitude.

                                                                                            2. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                              I just went to the website where I see they are selling iPhone 5/5S cases... that appear to be Le Creuset lids. Just when you think you've seen it all!

                                                                                              1. re: Susangria

                                                                                                I got an email featuring those covers a couple weeks ago. I almost posted a link on Chowhound, but I was too annoyed by the entire concept. To paraphrase Janeane Garofalo in "The Truth About Cats and Dogs",

                                                                                                It's ok to love your cookware, just don't LOVE your cookware.

                                                                                                1. re: DuffyH

                                                                                                  What can they be thinking? Clearly one of the great-grandchildren is in charge now....

                                                                                          2. re: Susangria

                                                                                            That's beautiful. I saw it at an outlet store, not at outlet prices however. Happy Birthday!

                                                                                          3. New in the kitchen - an 8 piece setting of Revol white porcelain dishes. Have had Fiesta place settings for over 30 years, it was past time for a little change up. Sur la Table had a sale on the Revol just when I started looking so that worked out well. They are plain and fancy all at once. So far, loving them. Much lighter weight than the Fiesta, emptying the dishwasher feels like the plates are floating into my fingers.

                                                                                            4 Replies
                                                                                            1. re: Cam14

                                                                                              Nice! I'm a big fan of simple white dinnerware.

                                                                                              1. re: Susangria

                                                                                                all of my plates every day and formal are white. i love it.

                                                                                                1. re: eLizard

                                                                                                  My everyday plates are my formal plates. White porcelain means buying formal dinnerware only if you really want to. ;-)

                                                                                                  1. re: DuffyH

                                                                                                    With a few serving pieces added the Revol will work. The plates are smallish, 10 1/4" but our upper cabinets are only 10 3/4" deep. It's remarkable how many plates are larger than that. Now I know why open shelves are so popular, the plates don't fit if the doors are on.

                                                                                            2. Here's the newest: Two nylon drawstring All Clad bags for my two All Clad d5 10" fry pans--one non stick; one traditional. It allows me to hang the pans w/lid for easy access, and at the same time, protect them from damage.

                                                                                              Ray