I was lucky enough to test cookware for a few magazine articles and Consumer Guide in the past and I thought I'd show you my current collection. I currently do not have a dishwasher - sigh - but even if I did only the stainless pots and pans would go in there. Still I'm pretty hard on cookware but am learning to baby it more. The
skillets get hung up on my island and a couple of the pieces live on top of the cabinets or the fridge so they don't get banged up in storage.
Starting from left, top to bottom then right, top to bottom:
1. All Clad LTD Paella pan - I rarely use it but I keep it around for when I'm cooking for a crowd. I do like it for large quantities of lasagna.
2. Le Creuset Reversible Grill/Griddle pan - I love this! Yes, it is a pain to clean but there's nothing like it when I'm making corn tortillas or pancakes. I do grill on it but I think I prefer my George Foreman grill for that.
3. All Clad Stainless Saute Pan - I've had this pan forever and it will certainly last a lifetime but I've never been a fan of All Clad's handles. It is something about the way they are weighted but I always have to hold the pans right near the bottom of the handle. Perhaps I just have wimpy arms.
4. Le Creuset skillet - I bought this last year after I gave up my nonstick pans. I watched America's Test Kitchen and they recommended this in lieu of nonstick pans. Is this nonstick? Not at all - I've ruined many a sauteed tofu slice in it. Is this better than a cast iron skillet? No - my well-seasoned cast iron skillet is more nonstick. It is pretty though and the heaviness is nice.
5. Lodge Cast Iron Skillet - Also called a spider, this is one of my least expensive and most adored pans in my kitchen. It browns everything beautifully and has gained a beautiful patina over the years.
6.Carbon Steel Omelette Pan - I can't remember where I bought this but I've had a devil of a time getting a good coating on this pan. I only use it for toasting nuts because I like the smaller size.
Also from left, top to bottom then right, top to bottom:
1. Carbon Steel wok - I purchased this at an Asian market and I'm careful only to use hot water and a brush to clean it.
2. Hoffritz 5.5 quart Stainless Pot - This was an inexpensive pot but I am really happy with it. I bought it because of the shape so I could use it for corn on the cob and asparagus but I also use it as my tamale steamer. I'm pretty fond of the glass cover.
3. Cuisinart Stainless 4 Quart Pan - I love Cuisinart's Stainless Cookware - the weight, the handles, everything. I also have a Cuisinart Stainless 8 quart stockpot that is in the fridge holding some pasta and beans.
4. Cuisinart 8-quart Pressure Cooker - This is really really old and we still use it often for dried beans and risottos. They don't make the gasket for it anymore and I can't find a good replacement so I will probably replace this in fall.
5. Cuisinart Stainless 1 Quart Saucier - I was surprised to find how very helpful a pan with a pour spout can be. I use it for warming liquids, sauces, and melting margarine.
6. All Clad Cop-R-Chef 2 Quart Saucepan - I've kind of given up on keeping this pan looking its best as we have very hard water. The cover has a ding in it because of the softness of coppper and the brass handle gets quite hot. I use it for sauces.
7. Le Creuset 1.75 Qt Round Dutch Oven - Believe it or not, this is my third Le Creuset Dutch oven. I gave a smaller one away and I ruined an old 2.5 qt oven by burning some brown rice and flaking off the enamel coating. I have also tried a less expensive version, Staub, and that pot's enamel flaked off as well in the first year. I am babying this one because I do enjoy using them for soups and stews.
I call this week's CSA offering an easy box. Everything in it will be easy to incorporate in our meals without any special planning. I am getting antsy for our first tomatoes - Farmer Monte reports in the newsletter that our wet spring has delayed the tomatoes.