Cookware & Bakeware

 

Cookware suited for your Cooking task

 [Aluminum] [Cast Iron] [Conclusions] [Enamel Cast Iron] [Copper] [Glass] [Microwave] [Stainless Steel]

 


 

Cooking is more than recipes, ingredients and the talent of the cook, the quality and type cookware plays a significant role. The overall

success of a dish, including the speed and thoroughness with which it is cooked can depend to a great extent on the choice of cookware

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

The various types cookware below each has its own set of benefits, ranging from heat retention, heat distribution to weight and their look and feel. Ultimately, good quality cookware will cost more than your standard day-to-day cookware, it will enhance the meal you are cooking, and will likely be a pleasure to cook with and easier to clean.


 

Aluminum Cookware:

 

Ideal for frying and braising

 

Among all cookware aluminum cookware represents in excess of fifty percent. Aluminum is light in weight and has excellent heat conducting abilities (copper is better though), is also inexpensive due to its time-saving and energy-saving capabilities when it comes to cooking. Aluminum cookware enables heat to be distributed quickly from the bottom of the aluminum pot or pan to its sides until the food is uniformly surrounded. This alloy provides for distribution of heat ensures that food is not scorched or burnt.

Aluminum cookware comes in the widest range and serves various cooking purposes such as casseroles, frying, sautéing, grilling, simmering pots, saucepans, roasting and boiling are some of the regularly used aluminum cookware.

Acidic foods such as tomatoes, fruits, vinegar-based sauces, to name a few react with the aluminum and can give rise to off flavors. This is not really a problem, just be aware.


Cast Iron Cookware:

Although it is rather heavy, consider that it and will last for many years, it is also having great cooking properties. Cast iron cookware heats up evenly all over so you can be sure of food being evenly cooked. It warms food slowly in the oven and is perfect of dishes that require being cooked slowly for a long time. Since it also cools equally slowly, food left in the cookware will stay hot for a considerable period of time, thereby saving on the hassle of reheating. Since reheating food leads to a loss of its nutritional benefits, this also means you are eating healthier.

Bare cast iron cookware obviously does not have the enamel coating on it and so is cheaper. It also has the advantage of leaching some of the iron into the food during the cooking process; many consider this a real plus, as this leeching of *dietary iron contributes to the nutritional value of food. This is helpful to those who need to increase the iron in their diets. Bare cast iron cookware requires more care than the enameled version. What this means is that you will have to be season the cookware before it is used. Seasoning is the process by which a coating of oil is bonded to the metal surface to prevent rusting and provide a stick resistant surface to the cookware. Bare cast iron cookware may be pre-seasoned; in this case no further seasoning is required. A lot of non-seasoned bare cast iron cookware is sold with a protective coating. This needs to be removed before any seasoning can be done. The best method of doing this is to use a scouring pad and rub the surface of the metal until the coating is removed and the bare metal exposed.

Since normal cookware cleaning techniques like washing it in a dishwasher will remove the seasoning from bare cast iron cookware, hand washing is the best way to clean these utensils. Simply wash the cookware in warm soapy water and immediately hand dry it. Then, while it is still warm, apply a light coating of oil to the surface and it is ready for the next use.

 

Enameled cast iron cookware has a coating of porcelain enamel which provides a non-stick surface which makes it easier to clean, resistant to rust and reduces the possibility of it reacting with food during the cooking process. If your primary care physician or dietician has advised you to reduce the amount of *iron in your diet, this is the best option for you. Being non-stick means that it is possible to reduce the amount of oil used in cooking, which is another health benefit. Also, enameled cast iron cookware does not have to be seasoned like bare cast iron cookware.


Enamel cookware based on a core of aluminum has a few problems. Although the enamel itself is just as hard, the metal it's fused to is thinner, meaning that it deforms more easily if it is dropped or if it bangs against other pots on a rack or in a cupboard. In addition, the thermal expansion of aluminum-based enamel cookware is greater than that of cast iron. Both of those facts make the enamel more subject to stress cracking and chipping. However, it should last as long as the nonstick coating on the inside of the pan.

 


Copper Cookware:

 

Look for copper cookware with an “18/10” rated interior stainless-steel coating. And purchase your cookware that comes with a lifetime warranty, as this protects you from and any material of construction defects in the cooking utensils you buy. Follow the *manufacturer’s care instructions to keep the warranty valid.

It is one of the best metals to use in the manufacture of cookware because of its high heat conductivity which ensures that a cooking vessel will heat evenly all over, with no “hot spots”. Since the metal responds rapidly to changes in the heat sources, varying temperatures during cooking becomes easy and braising and browning food may be done without any problems.

 

Copper Cookware is a soft material and it dents and scratches easily and also reacts to food that comes into contact with it. For this reason copper cookware is usually coated on the inner surface with some other metal or alloy like tin, nickel and stainless steel. Tin wears out fast and copper cookware lined with this metal needs to be changed fairly frequently. A stainless-steel inner coating is long lasting and easy to clean. Tin lined copper cookware is the cheaper option but because of its long life, stainless steel lined copper utensils are more economical in the long run.

The thicker the copper, the better the heat distribution through-out the inner cooking surface, and consider that quality copper cookware is heavy. Before buying a pot or pan, lift it to see if you are comfortable with the weight; do keep in mind that it will be even heavier when it is full of food during preparation.

Copper cookware should normally be hand washed in warm soapy water Immediately after use and then completely dried to prevent spots developing on the surface. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for best results and to ensure the warranty remains valid.

 

Copper will tarnish after a period of use, although this does not affect its performance and the original color and shine can be brought back by using a manufacturer recommended *copper cleaning agent.

 


Glass Cookware:

Ceramic, Porcelain, Pyrex, Corning

Glass bakeware dishes behave differently from metal bakeware. Porcelain glass cookware heats up and cool down more slowly and help prevent a thick crust from forming on casseroles, brownies, and other foods. Generally, to adapt a recipe from a metal dish to a glass dish, you should lower the baking temperature by 25 degrees and allow a bit of extra time in the oven.

Pyrex (Pyrex bowls which are made of glass have a tendency to shatter violently and dramatically when placed on a stove top or otherwise heated/cooled rapidly the glass changes temperature rapidly, thus it can undergo "thermal shock."). Corningware that you purchase today is not the same Pyrex and Corning ware of years past, this is now just a trade name, both now owned by World Kitchen and no longer can they perform as the older ones did.

Since the World Kitchen acquisition, the Pyrex dishes are made of plain soda-lime-silica glass and the opaque Corning dishes are no longer made for the Stove top/Broiler safe Pyroceramic glass.

The European manufacturer of Pyrex, Arc International, uses borosilicate glass in its Pyrex glass kitchen products; however, the U.S. manufacturer of Pyrex kitchenware (Kitchen World) uses tempered soda-lime glass. Thus, Pyrex can refer to either soda-lime glass or borosilicate glass when discussing kitchen glassware, while Pyrex, Bomex, Duran and Kimax all refer to borosilicate glass.

Porcelain cookware is thinner and more fragile than stoneware, but it is harder and stronger than earthenware or terra cotta. Porcelain enamel cookware is not quite as strong as some manufacture’s lines, which resembles porcelain in appearance. When looking for porcelain cookware you'll discover many patterns and colors. Porcelain cookware is dishwasher-safe. Porcelain enamel cookware shows a glazed surface which is exceedingly smooth and hard, and generally it is quite easy to clean, although the best path for stuck on food is to soak it for a while.


Microwave Cookware:

 

Microwave cookware may also be ideal for use in regular ovens, freezers, and refrigerators, apart from being useful to cook and serve meals. Always read the manufacturer’s instructions on the cookware labels as well as the microwave instruction manual. This will give you a good idea of what kind of cookware you can use in your microwave. Most microwave cookware sets are dishwasher safe; do not put them in the dishwasher unless the manufacturer has specifically mentioned it on the label.

 

Always pierce the outer skins of potatoes and whole vegetables with a knife or a fork before cooking, as the buildup of pressure can make them explode.

When you stir food, the heat is spread evenly and the food cooks faster. Foods such as potatoes, meat or chicken should be turned over and rearranged in order to enable them to cook evenly, as stirring is not possible.

 

Microwaves cook the insides first; the container may be cooler while the food may be extremely hot. So, allow the cookware to sit in there for some time and remove the cooked food only when it simmers for a few minutes.

 

Use only specified microwave safe cookware that are made of glass, china clay, tough plastic or ceramic. Do remember that using metal cookware, such as aluminum foil and metal-trimmed dishes can cause fires and also damage your microwave unit.

 


Stainless Steel Cookware:

Including Waterless.

The main advantage is its durability and appearance along with the necessary low maintenance required. It is an extremely hard alloy; and it is somewhat difficult to dent it or scratch it during typical normal use. It will not rust and with regular care and cleaning stainless steel cookware can last a lifetime. Stainless steel cookware does not react with food during the cooking process and will not be affected by being used to prepare food with a high acid content.

Caution is required when purchasing Stainless Steel cookware, as there are differences. Some of the utensils are not designed with additional necessary alloys to aid in the problem with stainless steel, which is that it is not a good conductor of heat. This means that your cooking time will be longer and that the utensil may not heat evenly, causing hot spots that may affect the food being cooked. To overcome this problem, manufacturers use what is called a 3-ply construction technique that involves adding a layer of either aluminum or copper between 2 layers of stainless steel.

Copper or aluminum are excellent conductors of heat and will compensate for the slow and uneven heating you will get when cooking with pure stainless-steel cookware and ensure quick and uniform heating.

Make sure you follow the manufacturer’s cleaning and maintenance instructions to ensure that your lifetime cookware does really last that long. Although cookware made of stainless steel is dishwasher safe, the instructions of the brand you buy, may advise cleaning with a specific powder cleaning agent and using warm water. The manufacturer’s research may have found that this method will protect the gloss and shine, of which you want to maintain for as long as possible.

Consider that if you are using an induction stove or are planning to get one, buy stainless steel cookware with a magnetic exterior which will allow stainless steel pans as well as your pots to be used for induction cooking. Also, purchase stainless steel cookware with “stay cool handles” that will, at least for some time, stay cool but are also safe for oven use. Stock pots made with full cladding (a heat distribution layer that extends up the sides of the pot) heat more quickly and is more energy-efficient than one with only a heavy bottom. This becomes more important with taller stock pots. The most common choices of cooking surface for your stock pot include stainless steel, which is normally one’s best choice.

Waterless cookware consists of heavy, well-made stainless-steel cookware with up to a five-ply core for heat distribution and retention. It has tight-fitting appliance covers and steam whistles or other signals to indicate when the proper cooking temperature has been reached. At that point you turn the heat down or off and allow the food to continue cooking in the hot pan. Some waterless cookware sets have a carbon steel layer in the core, making them suitable for use on an induction range. On any kind of range, though, waterless cooking is energy-efficient. Waterless cookware is both energy saving and nutrient-protecting due to the low heat used when cooking. And because stainless steel waterless cookware is well-designed clad construction, it can be used for conventional cooking as well as waterless cooking.
 
Most good quality stainless steel cookware comes with a lifetime warranty


some people are sensitive to the nickel found in stainless steel cookware.


Bakeware

[Baking dishes] [Baking sheets] [Baking liners & mats] [Bread & Pizza baking]

[Brownie pans] [Bundt pans] [Cake pans] [Ceramic bakeware] [Copper Cookie cutters] [Dish & Pan size conversions]

[Doughnut pans] [Flame top cookware] [French Clay ovenware] [Glass-Pyrex/] [Jelly roll pans] [Metal bakeware]

 [Molds, Plaques & Rings] [Muffin pans] [Pie Dishes & tools] [Roasters & Roasting pans] [Silicone bakeware] [Soufflé dishes]

[Springform & Cheesecake pans] [Stoneware] [Tart & Quiche pans]


Bakeware refers to many types of baking utensils, such as baking sheets, baking pans and baking dishes. Each having one common characteristic, which is they are all used to bake some type of sweet or savory foods in the oven. Baking sheets are made of some type of metal but baking pans and dishes can be metal, ceramic or glass, and now silicone is being used to produce some of these items also. Bakeware is available in many materials, shapes, and sizes. Some of the items that are considered bakeware include: cookie sheets, cake pans, jelly-roll pans, tube pans, loaf pans, muffin tins, bundt pans, brioche molds, springform pans, tart pans, pie plates, square and rectangular bakers, round and oval casseroles, ramekins, and pizza pans. There are many items that are considered bakeware.

Baking dishes: See above-Cookware

Baking sheets:  **Baking Pans and Cookie Sheets-
Although cookie sheets are often referred to as "baking sheets," there is a difference. Baking pans have rolled edges, and cookie sheets do not. Cookie sheets offer the advantage of a large surface area ideal for holding a large number of cookies. But their lack of edges limits their uses: Roasting, for example, is impossible on a cookie sheet, because juices will run off the pan.

Basic Aluminum Baking Pans and Cookie Sheets-
Affordable, durable, and easy to clean, these pans conduct heat quickly and uniformly. Aluminum can react to acidic foods such as tomatoes, however, resulting in a metallic taste, and can cause delicate foods to discolor. Aluminum imparts a metallic taste to some foods, too. To prevent such mishaps, line aluminum bakeware with parchment paper or a Silpat (a French nonstick baking mat).

Double-Thick Aluminum Half-Sheet Pans with Rolled Edges-
These pans are ideal for everything from baking cookies, pastries, and breads to roasting cuts of meats and vegetables. Typically, half-sheets measure 13 by 18 inches -- the perfect size, since most ovens have an interior rack that measures 22 inches wide (for optimal results, several inches are needed around the baking sheet for air to circulate). Similar baking sheets are available in smaller sizes. Quarter-sheet pans with rolled edges are the right size for many toaster ovens and are great for toasting breadcrumbs, nuts, and coconut in small amounts.

French Black Steel Sheet pans-
These pans require special care. They must be seasoned regularly with kosher salt (rubbing salt into the surface prevents corrosion), and they must be kept dry, as a damp steel sheet pan will rust. These heavy-duty metal sheets conduct heat very well, resulting in even browning. If you find the pan cooks too quickly, lower the temperature by 25 degrees, or reduce the cooking time. These pans are excellent to use for puff pastry.

Insulated Cookie Sheets-
These sheets have a 1/2-inch lip and they are ideal for preventing thin or delicate cookies from browning too quickly. The tops and bottoms will come out evenly baked and evenly colored; pans like these are ideal for lightly colored treats such as spritz cookies and shortbread. Unfortunately, insulated sheets bake more slowly, so the baking times given in the recipe will need to be modified. Don't use these sheets if you want crispy edges or browned bottoms on your cookies; they are designed to prevent those results.

Nonstick Cookie Sheets-
Because they are dark in color, these pans bake cookies more quickly than standard aluminum pans do. Cookies come out crunchy, and the nonstick surfaces are easy to clean. Keep in mind, however, that these pans vary greatly in quality, and all nonstick cookware must eventually be replaced, because the finish wears off.

From Martha Stewart Living Television, November 1999

 

**Aluminum cookie sheets, bread pans and cake pans are easier to keep clean, they don’t rust and they conduct heat well.

Bread & Pizza baking: Aside from your needing a quality pizza pan, one that has tiny holes to let the hot air reach your crust and bake your pizza. Ideally a pizza pan that has tiny holes to let the hot air reach your crust and bake your pizza, and you will have no more soggy crusts! You will need a quality pizza peel and bread peel; this is a must for any serious pizza baker or bread maker. The best is one made of sanded alder wood. For home use the best suited peel is 14" wide with a 15" long blade surface for your pizza or bread doughs. The overall length of the peel is just under 24". For your homemade pizza the peel serves for sliding the pizza in and out of the oven, cutting and rustic table service. For your bread dough’s, simply spread a light layer of cornmeal on the peel's surface, turn out your loaf on the peel and transfer to the oven sheet or pizza/bread stone for baking. The peel is also perfect for transferring your traditional and rustic country breads to the oven.

Tip: To get that pizza crust to bake just right, it needs to be of a uniform thickness. You can roll it out just right with a pizza roller tool. This is essential for thin crust pizzas. It also works great for pasta.

Brownie pans: Aluminum and nonstick pans are generally best for brownies, although ceramic, which is slower to absorb heat, will work, too, but will produce a lighter-colored product at the end. If you must use glass, reduce the oven temperature by 25 degrees and bake for the same duration of time to achieve desirable results.

Bundt pans: (The bundt 'Bund" name likely originated from the German bundkuchen and the d in "bundt" is silent). The aluminum bundt pan is a variation of the ceramic fluted and grooved sides cake forms that were used in Germany, Austria, and Hungary to make the ring-shaped dessert cake. The original version was made from either delicate ceramic or cast iron and were quite heavy, hence the newer version that is made of lightweight aluminum, which is now universally accepted.

Cake PansShould you wish to bake a towering tied wedding cake just like the professional baker, utilize one that is heavy weight and with straight sides. If you are into this for the long haul, use baking pans that are anodized. This anodizing etches the surface of the pan removing inconsistencies and impurities from the natural aluminum. Further, anodizing penetrates the surface of the metal creating a surface that is harder than stainless steel. It also ensures that the pan is dishwasher-safe and will not stain or discolor like natural aluminum pans. Additionally, anodizing will not alter your baking times or temperature. Rigid corrugated cake boards offer the perfect support for your baking creations. Round Cake Boards 6" - 18", Full Sheet Cake Boards, Quarter Sheet Cake Boards, Half Sheet Cake Board. Commercial quality pans are made from a heavy 14-gauge hard aluminum and feature perfectly straight sides. The square corners are essential for professional results. Golden brown crust and even cooking. Pans will last for many uses with reasonable care. Wash in warm sudsy water and do not scour, or you’re going to damage the surface.

Ceramic bakeware (see below)

Copper Cookie Cutters: You name it and likely you can buy the shape you have in mind, as there are a thousand different shapes available, and they come in sizes from mini's, small, large and occasionally enormous. The best cutters are made of Copper.

Better cutters can last a few life generations, if not more. The best cutters may cost you a few more dollars, but they are handcrafted (they bear a "maker's mark" impressed onto it by the artist. The maker's mark dates back to the early middle ages when metal craftsmen marked each piece they created with a distinctive symbol, know you know.) by craftsman and built to last. Copper cutters are snapped up at garage sales by many collectors. Look for a cutter that is of heavier gauge copper (the cutter will have less "spring" when squeezed and is less likely to lose its shape over time) and the unit is fastened together by a line of solder. Copper cookie cutters have a tendency to tarnish over time. Tarnished cookie cutters are still safe to use with food. To restore the natural beauty, use a non-toxic copper cleaner that is environmentally safe, and removes tarnish instantly.

Tip: So, the dough will not stick to the cutter, wrap a piece of cellophane around the cookie cutter, then turn the cutter over and cut your dough! remove the cutter, peel off the excess dough.

 

Doughnut pans: Instead of fried doughnuts, bake yours in a non-stick surface doughnut pan, as well as the baked are much healthier than fried, and the pans are easy to clean. The come in Standard (6 ea. 3 1/4 ") size or mini-size (12 ea. 2" diameter).

Tip: If you want a nice uniformly shaped doughnut, start by filling the recess to HALF full, 2/3rds is sometimes too much, as the doughnut will rise slightly above the pan giving you less than a perfectly shaped doughnut, and make sure to lightly grease the pan so each piece will drop out easier when baked.

Flame top cookware: Le Creuset is cast iron (which is the best material for distributing and holding heat) with an enameled surface (for easy clean-up), also the Staub, Pampered chef and Lodge are great, but cannot be placed in the microwave. Emile Henry flame top is expandable ceramic, and it is somewhat heavier and can be placed in the microwave. As one can see, each has its good/bad offerings.

French Clay ovenware: These clay dishes are basic cooking tools in French kitchens today. 

Oven and Broiler Safe

Microwave Safe

Dishwasher Safe

Cleanup is easy!

Highly resistant to thermal shock (extreme changes in temperature).

This ovenware product that can go straight from the freezer, to the hot oven, to the dining table (0F - 500F)

The glaze is incredibly hard and durable. Crazing (cracking) will not occur.

The surface is hard enough to carve directly in the dish without scratching the finish.

Beautiful and colorful, it's perfect for serving as well

Retains heat to keep food warm at the table

Provides unsurpassed even heat distribution. The gradual and even distribution of heat helps food cook slowly and thoroughly.

Glass: CorningWare, Pyrex, Anchor or other glass casserole or baking dish. Glass bakeware absorbs, rather than reflects, heat. It conducts and retains heat more than metal. These features speed up the cooking process. Because of this, you should turn your oven 25 degrees lower than the recipe recommends to avoid burning. Since food cooks in the same amount of time in glassware as in metal pans, you will save a few cents in energy costs each time you bake. Much like dark metal, it absorbs heat, making it ideal for crisp-crusted pies but much less so for bar cookies, quick breads, and fruit crisps, which can easily become burnt.

Considerations:

You can watch your food cooking if you are using clear glassware.

Glassware is a perfect vessel for micro-cooking as well as baking in the oven.

(however, it is not so great for stovetop cooking)

You can freeze, refrigerate, bake and serve in the same dish.

Glass is inert, meaning that there are no chemicals to leach out into the food (and to you) as there is with

plastics and even some metals (for example, cast iron leaches iron into foods). There are also no reactions with foods, such as acids.

Glassware does not stain and is generally easy to clean; they are dishwasher safe.

Jelly roll pan: Jelly roll is a sponge cake baked in a jelly roll pan and then rolled up with a filling of jelly or jam. When sliced, a circular pattern is formed in each slice of cake. The jelly roll cake batter is usually flavored with vanilla and/or almond extract. Raspberry or strawberry jam or jelly is usually used for the filling and some people prefer seedless varieties of these.

Since the outside layer of a jelly roll will show in the finished dessert, the jelly roll pan is often lined with a piece of wax paper or a silicone mat that is peeled off the cake after baking. This method tends to add a nice smooth look to the top surface of the jelly roll. Turning the other side of the jelly roll into a clean kitchen towel sprinkled with powdered, or icing, sugar and then letting it cool before filling may work well to allow you to remove the wax paper or mat. Then, once the jelly roll is completely cool, you can flip it over, fill it and place the roll on a plate seam side down before slicing and serving.

A jelly roll pan is usually made of aluminized steel as this material resists rusting and allows for an even distribution of heat. The non-stick versions have a dark non-stick coating added. Commercial quality jelly roll pans are made with heavy gauge steel for extra strength and to prevent bending and warping. You can also use this type to roast a big pan full of roasted vegetables or broil a lot of appetizers.

Metal bakeware. Bakeware ranges from cookie sheets to muffin pans, and your bakeware needs may depend upon how much and what kind of baking you do.

Molds, Flan, Plaques & Rings: Made from Aluminum, Carbon Steel, Tin, Silicone, Non-stick Teflon, Pottery, etc. Madeleine pans, Mousse rings. The Fluted Mold which allows you to create beautiful and distinctive cake designs while baking up quickly and evenly every time. Flan rings are round, ideal for making tarts, pastrides and cakes (Line the baking sheet with parchment when using). Although all manufacturers present various materials for the makeup of flan rings, if stainless is your choice, the bottomless rings should have rolled safety edges, which also double as keeping them level. 

Muffin pans: There are various other finishes currently available. These include aluminum, tin, non-stick, stoneware, cast iron, and silicone muffin tins. In addition to being available in a variety of materials, muffin tins also come in a variety of different shapes and sizes.

Muffin tins treated with a non-stick coating are handy, because muffins slide out easily and there is no need for paper muffin cups or non-stick cooking sprays. Non-stick options cost more, but they are worth the extra cost, especially for the dedicated baker. Muffin tins can also be used for other recipes besides muffins or cupcakes, and non-stick options are perfect for foods like cinnamon rolls. It is suggested that you utilize separate muffin tins that are specifically reserved for baking muffins, and not crossover for preparing meats or similar dishes.

Stoneware tins give the texture and flavor of items baked on a stone hearth or in a brick oven. The more you use these muffin tins, the better your baking will be. They darken and season with use, and foods will attain a richer flavor and will not stick to the pan.

Cast iron muffin tins also mimic baking pans from the past. These used to be placed directly over a camp or hearth fire, and many people enjoy the charm, texture, and flavor achieved by cooking or baking in seasoned cast iron pans. Cast iron muffin tins are also available in different shapes. Probably the two most popular are cactus and corncob shapes, often used for baking corn muffins.

Silicone muffin tins and other baking pans can withstand oven temperatures and are also dishwasher safe. The one drawback about silicone muffin tins is that they are very flexible, and you may need to slide a cookie sheet beneath them when transferring them into or out of the oven. High quality silicone pans can go in the microwave, conventional oven, toaster oven, dishwasher, and freezer without being damaged, and they are non-stick and easy to clean.

Did you know that Vintage pans and reproductions often have patterns on the bottom of each muffin cup?

Pie Dishes: You will find that almost brands provide good results, with only a few that simply does produce an edible pie. Where you will usually see the big differences is in the cleanup. Some require considerable scrubbing, but you will find that the nonstick-coated pans are by far the best, as the conclusion of baking there is virtually no heavy cleanup. They bake consistently all the way up the sides of the pan. With the thicker material, you can count on a more lasting durability and less chance of corrosion. It is dishwasher-safe, but if hand washing be sure to use a soft plastic or nylon sponge. Abrasive cleaners or steel wool may damage. The light-colored 'aluminum' pans provide for a beautiful golden-brown bottom and top crust. It has a large rim that can be grasped easily and comes with a convenient plastic domed lid for storage and transport. To prevent discoloration, it requires hand washing, but it does clean up easily. The Pyrex glass plate bakes up a perfect deep-dish pie crust and has handles for easy maneuvering in, around, and out of the oven. When it comes to Corning Ware, the manufacturer 'World kitchen' has redesigned to make it lighter and easier to handle. The functionality of this simple white plate is also enhanced by a rim that you can easily. a metal pie pan, you can expect your crust to brown quickly. But when you are working with a perforated metal pan, you can expect your crust to be melt-in-your-mouth flaky. The perforations allow air to circulate, which creates fewer air pockets and a fluffier crust. Preferred by professionals, its high-quality aluminized steel is an excellent heat retainer and bakes consistently all the way up the sides of the pan. With the thicker material, you can count on a more lasting durability and less chance of corrosion. It is dishwasher-safe, but if hand washing be sure to use a soft plastic or nylon sponge.

The Perfect Pie Crust

Tip: Pyrex Vs metal=Always spray your Pyrex well with baking spray and you will never have a soggy crust.

Ceramic; they are thicker and stronger than tempered glass (Pyrex), so they can withstand the heat, when on the stone for the full baking time, without burning, while Pyrex cannot. Should you decide to go the pizza stone route, be sure to preheat the stone for at LEAST an hour. Use one that is properly preheated, if you do not, you might render blocked good heat, and it will inhibit the bottom from browning.

Rosters & Roasting pans

Covered Roasting Pans: Best for sealing in the flavor

Covered roasting Pans usually have higher sides which provide ample room for meat juices with no threat of overflowing during cooking. Covers help to seal in flavor better than a foil covering. Varying greatly in quality and durability, covered roasting pans are available in stainless steel, enamel, porcelain and carbon steel.

Open Roasting Pans: Quite Versatile and easy to store

Types of open roasting pans include 18/10 stainless steel, enamel on steel or porcelain, aluminum, cast iron and carbon steel. So versatile, open roasters can double as serving trays. Some models are available with non-stick coatings for ease of cleaning. Cookware construction and prices do vary. An open roaster is very practical for cooking roasts, poultry or entrees, or for baking large cakes and desserts. When buying an open roaster for cooking poultry, ensure the pan has at least 3" high sides for meat juices to accumulate safely. Open roasters are generally easy to clean and store.

There are many roasting pan styles and various sizes to accommodate every need
. An open roaster allows greater air circulation and will allow a food's exterior to caramelize while a covered roaster combines steaming with roasting. A Roasting Pan should not be limited to holiday cooking. This versatile piece of cookware can also be used for gratins, casseroles and lasagna. In addition, a Roasting Pan can be invaluable for gently baking custards within custard cups or *ramekins in a water bath.

(*Ramekins are dishes commonly used for serving a variety of dishes such as crème brûlée, Molten chocolate cake, moimoi, cheese dishes, egg dishes, potted shrimps, ice cream, soufflé, baked "cocottes", crumbles, or scallops or used to serve side garnishes and condiments alongside an entree. Traditionally circular with a fluted exterior, ramekins can also be found in novelty shapes, such as flowers, or hearts. They are also built to withstand high temperatures, as they are frequently used in ovens)

um cookie sheets, bread pans & cake pans are much easier to keep clean, conduct heat well and don't rust. Not likely to take up
 
Silicone bakeware is easily adaptable to a wide range of temperatures, takes up little storage space and can go straight from the freezer to the oven. It is a fairly new product that is used for baking molds. It is made of a flexible and bendable silicone material that can be used in the oven, microwave, and freezer. The silicone bakeware does not absorb the heat like other bakeware but allows the heat to transfer evenly to the food. The cooking process stops immediately when food is removed from the oven, preventing additional browning of the bottom and edges of the food. Check the temperature range on the label to pick the best silicone bakeware that suits the type of cooking you'll be doing. Most silicone cookware can go from the freezer to use in the oven up to 475 degrees

Look for a seal of approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This will ensure you pick the best silicone bakeware suitable for cooking a variety of foods and at a variety of temperatures.

Avoid silicone bakeware made with plastic fillers since this less-expensive type of silicone cookware can crack easily and may have less heat resistance. One method is by bending the bakeware, if you see little white lines inside the cracks, likely the flexible bakeware has fillers, and these are seconds. Wash in hot soapy water and in case of stuck on food, soak in warm water to loosen. Do not use metal utensils or knives on non-stick surfaces, so as to prevent scratching the coating surface. It is also dishwasher safe.


Springform Pan 'Cheesecake pans' features a clamp or buckle that releases the pans sides from the base. Ideal for baking cheesecakes, tortes and other baked goods which are otherwise difficult to unmold. The two-piece pan that not only has sides that can be removed but the bottom comes out too. There is a round base and an interlocking band, usually 2 to 3 inches high, that forms the sides, opening and closing with the flick of a latch. The pan pieces are assembled for baking, and then, once the contents have cooked and cooled, the band is opened and removed. Because the cake remains on the pan's base, the springform is perfect both for delicate confections, and for the flourless chocolate cakes, and creamy cheesecakes

The standard springform pan comes with one base, a round platform that can be either smooth or dimpled with waffle-life indentations. Some people like the flat bottom for cakes and the dimpled one for crumb crusts or heavy concoctions. They are interchangeable.

Stoneware is Made from natural stoneware clay, each stoneware piece distributes heat efficiently for even baking and browning, it differs from porcelain because it is more opaque, and normally only partially vitrified. It may be vitreous or semi-vitreous. It is usually colored grey or brownish because of impurities in the clay used for its manufacture, and is normally glazed."

In contrast, earthenware is fired at lower temperatures and is not impervious to liquids. Stoneware is made of clay fired at very high temperatures. While earthenware is commonly used for dishes, canisters and other items, stoneware is made to be heat-tolerant. Stoneware is a stronger and harder clay. When unglazed, stoneware will be a buff or terra cotta hue with a rough texture. It is oven-safe, but cannot be used on the stove top.   Porcelain, which some consider to be a type of stoneware, is distinguished as being whiter than stoneware and always vitreous. Kaolin, or china clay, has a lower content of impurities than many other clays. It is also fired to a vitreous state, transforming the constituent silica into glass. Some porcelain bodies are translucent after firing. Firing a piece of pottery to too high a temperature will result in warping or melting. Vitreous clay bodies can be made at different temperatures ranges, but they are typically fired in the stoneware/porcelain range. Fired stoneware absorbs up to 5% water, porcelain 0%, and earthenware up to 10%. Earthenware, when moist, is typically not freeze resistant.

Soufflé dishes (the word "soufflè" means "puffed up.")

The straight high sides help make it easier for a soufflè to rise. On frozen soufflès, you can increase the height of the dish by wrapping parchment paper around the outside, removing it after the soufflè has set.

Porcelain soufflè dishes are very versatile, and can be used to make baked or cold or frozen souffléès. Their non-porous surface resists stains and is easy to clean. Safe for use in the dishwasher, oven, microwave, broiler and freezer. Lead- and cadmium-free. Thermal and shock resistant.

Tart & Quiche pans come with low, fluted sides and have either solid or removable bottoms. Pans with solid bottoms normally are used for baking an empty tart shell, while pans with removable bottoms are great for both filled tarts and empty shells. 

To remove a baked tart from a pan with a removable bottom, set the pan on a coffee can or other cylindrical base and allow the outside ring of the pan to drop down. The fragile tart or pastry shell can be easily slid onto a serving plate.


Anchor Hocking bakeware is Great and isn't expensive.
Read below Anchor Hockings suggestions for easy care for your bakeware.

OVEN AND MICROWAVE SAFE. Use your Anchor Hocking bakeware in gas and electric ovens up to 425°F or microwave ovens without browning element. Not for stovetop, broiler or toaster oven use. Do not use an alcohol or canned heat burner as a direct heat source.

USE FOR STORING FOOD. Use your Anchor Hocking Bakeware for storing food in refrigerator or freezer but do not take directly from

freezer to oven. Let food thaw before cooking or reheating in oven.

CLEAN WITH PLASTIC OR NYLON NON-SCRATCH PADS OR CLEANSERS. Wash your Anchor Hocking bakeware in detergent and water.

For stubborn baked on food, let the bakeware soak and then use non-scratch cleansers and scrub pads intended for glass ovenware. Dishwasher safe.

AVOID SEVERE TEMPERATURE CHANGES. Do not add liquid to a hot dish. Handle hot bakeware dishes with a dry cloth or potholder.

Never place hot bakeware on wet or cold surfaces


Baking Dish and Pan Size Conversions


How to measure pan sizes:

To determine the pan's dimensions always measure inside edge to inside edge of the pan so that you do not include the thickness of the pan in your measurement.

To measure the depth, place your ruler straight up from the bottom of the pan (do not slant the ruler). 

To determine the pan's volume (how much batter it will hold), pour pre-measured water by the cupful until the pan is filled to the brim.

If the new pan makes the batter shallower than in the original recipe, this will cause the heat to reach the center of the pan more quickly and you will have more evaporation.  To solve this problem, you need to shorten the baking time and raise the temperature of the oven slightly. To substitute a pan that is shallower than the pan in the recipe, reduce the baking time by 1/4.

If the new pan makes the batter deeper than in the original recipe, this will cause less evaporation and the batter will take longer to cook.  To solve this problem, you need to lengthen the baking time and lower the temperature of the oven slightly. To substitute a pan that is deeper than the pan in the recipe, increase the baking time by 1/4.


How to Substitute Pans:

The following table will help determine substitutions of pans and dishes of similar approximate size if you do not have the specific sized baking pan, dish, or mold called for in a recipe.

To substitute with glass pan, reduce the baking temperature by 25 degrees.
 


3-cup Baking Dish or Pan:

8" x 1-1/4 round pan


10-cup Baking Dish or Pan:

8" x 2-1/2" springform pan
9" x 9" x 2" square pan
11-3/4" x 7-1/2" x 1 3/4" baking pan
13" x 9" x 2" rectangular pan
15-1/2" x 10-1/2" x 1" jelly-roll pan
 


4-cup Baking Dish or Pan:

8" x 1-1/2" round layer cake pan
8" x 4" x 2-1/2" loaf pan
9" x 1-1/2" round pie pan
11" x 1" round tart pan
 


11-cup Baking Dish or Pan:

9" x 3" springform pan
10" x 2" round cake pan


6-cup Baking dish or Pan:

1 (8") round cake pan
7-1/2" x 3" bundt tube pan
8" x 8" x 2" square pan
8 1/2" x 4-1/2" x 2-1/2" loaf pan
9" x 1-1/2" round layer cake pan
9" x 2" round pie plate (deep dish)
9" x 9" x 1-1/2" rectangular pan
10" x 1-1/2" round pie plate
11" x 7" x 2" rectangular pan
 


12-cup Baking Dish or Pan:

2 (9") round cake pans
9" x 3" angel-cake pan or tube pan
10" x 2-1/2" springform pan
10" x 3-1/2" bundt pan
13" x 9" x 2" metal baking pan
14" x 10-1/2" x 2-1/2" roasting pan


7-cup Baking dish or Pan:

8" x 2" round cake pan
9" x 9" x 2" rectangular pan
 


15-cup Baking dish or Pan:

13" x 9" x 2" rectangular pan


8-cup Baking dish or Pan:

8" x 8" x 2" square pan
9" x 2" round cake pan
9" x 5" x 3" loaf pan
9" x 9" x 1-1/2" square pan
9-1/4" x 2-3/4" ring mold
9-1/2" x 3-1/4" brioche pan
11" x 7" x 1-1/2" baking pan
 


16-cup Baking dish or Pan:

9" x 3-1/2" springform pan
10" x 4" fancy tube mold


9-cup Baking Dish or Pan:

8" x 3" bundt pan
9" x 3" tube pan
 


18-cup Baking dish or Pan:

10" x 4" angel-cake or tube pan

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Perfect Pie Crust~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

There are three basic ingredients in a pie crust - fat, flour, and liquid. You can come up with numerous variations just by changing your basic ingredients and their ratios. Check out the many different recipes for making the perfect pie crust.


Cold ingredients and limited handling are the key to preparing a wonderful pie crust.

The colder the better. All ingredients (even the flour) should be ice cold before mixing. It is especially important for the fat you are using (butter, lard, and/or vegetable shortening) to be very cold. Professionals say pie dough should never get warmer than 60 degrees F. If you are making the dough in a food processor you can even freeze the fat before using it.

Fats:  The type of fat you use will affect flavor and flakiness, while the amount affects tenderness. Flaky crusts result when bits of unmelted fat are layered between layers of flour and melt away with baking. They can be made from a variety of solid fats such as butter, vegetable shortening, and lard.

Butter, lard, and vegetable shortening must be chilled prior to use. If it is too warm, the flour will absorb too much of the fat and produce a tough crust. If using butter or margarine, cut into small pieces prior to adding to the flour.

Butter Tip: When using butter, freeze it first. When ready to use, shred the frozen butter into the flour with a cheese grater.
 

Liquids:  For a tender crust, you want just enough liquid to moisten the flour without drenching it. Liquids should be well chilled (actually liquids should be ice cold). The mixing after water is added is critical in making pie dough - water should be added gradually to the dry ingredients and not all at once.

Mix by hand with your fingers or a pastry blender Use a minimum amount of liquid and handle the dough as little as possible. Overworking the dough will make it tough. NOTE: If too much water is added, the dough will have to be mixed with more flour thus becoming overworked and tough. If too little water is added, it will cause a dry crumbly dough with poor handling qualities.
 

Flour:  To promote tenderness in your pie crust, choose low protein wheat flour such as cake flour or pastry flour. All-purpose flour is readily available and works well for pie crusts. Unbleached flour is renderer.

Pa To make pastry-type flour from all-purpose flour, place 1 tablespoon of cornstarch or other non-gluten flour in the bottom of the measuring cup for every cup of flour you measure.

If you want to use a whole grain flour to make pie crust, allow extra time. You will have a much more tender crust if you refrigerate the pie dough overnight before baking to allow the bran to rehydrate thoroughly.
 

Perfect Pie Hints and Tips:  

  1. If you roll out the dough on wax paper or parchment paper, it makes cleanup easier. To keep wax paper from slipping, sprinkle a few drops of water on the countertop before arranging the paper.
     
  2. Use a glass pie plate or a dull metal pie plate for making pies. The shiny metal pans keep the crust from browning properly. If using a glass pie plate, reduce the oven temperature by 25 degrees. Do not oil or grease pie plates.

Always make deep slits in the top crust of fruit pie. If you do not do this, the filling will be soft and soggy. To prevent the crust from getting too dark, you can cover it with a strip of aluminum foil or a pie shield. You also have the option of reducing the oven temperature if you notice things getting too dark.

  1. Hints to prevent bottom crust from getting soggy:

If pie has only a bottom crust, you can blind-bake the crust and then moisture-proof it. You can brush it with a bit of egg white two or three minutes after it comes out of the oven.

A good way to keep pie crust from becoming soggy is to sprinkle it with a mixture of equal parts sugar and flour before adding filling.

Another way is to brush the unbaked bottom crust of a pie with a well-beaten egg white before filling. This keeps the berries and other fruits from making the pie bottoms mushy.

Baking a frozen pie is also a help, as the crust begins to bake before the heat thaws the filling, and the entire pie bakes for longer than it would normally.

  1. To prevent sliding, first line the dough with aluminum foil. Take a piece of foil long enough so that when folded in half, it covers the pie plate. Fold it in half, then shape it on the counter by pressing your hand down in the middle and pulling up on the sides (making sort of a bowl shape.) Now put the foil in your pie shell and gently press it so that it evenly covers the bottom and sides of the pie dough. Now put your pie weights in - you can use beans, rice, rock salt -- virtually any small, heat-proof items to weigh the crust down so that it neither puffs up nor slides down. Bake it in the preheated oven for about 10 minutes. Take out the foil and pie weights, and continue baking until lightly browned. Alternately, if you are using metal pie plates, you can line one pan with dough, lightly dust the dough with flour, then place a second pie plate on top of the dough. Invert the pans and bake upside-down for about 10 minutes. Carefully flip the pans over, and remove the top pie plate, then continue baking until lightly browned.
     
  2. Cool baked pies on a wire rack set on the counter. The rack allows air to circulate under the pie, preventing it from becoming soggy from the steam remaining it in.
     

High-Altitude Baking:  When making pies at high altitudes, pie crusts are not greatly affected. A slight increase in liquid may help keep them from becoming dry. Use as little flour as possible when rolling out the dough.

MORE COOKWARE CONCLUSIONS TO PONDER

 

Non-Stick Fry Pans

Food doesn't stick to surface of Non-Stick Fry Pans 
Uses little to no oils, butter or lard; perfect for low fat cooking
Easy clean up

Standard Surface Fry Pans

Extra releases and lubricants needed to prevent sticking Standard Surface Fry Pans
Extra releases and lubricants needed to prevent sticking
Lubricants seep into food, adding fat and calories
Lubricants usually adhere to fry pan.
Food particles do not come off easily.
Hand scrubbing needed.

                                                 
 
Non-stick cookware does have some small drawbacks. Here are some tips on safety and some notes about caring for your non-stick fry pans.
      Limitations:
•    Subject to scratching
•    Not suitable for high temp cooking
(over 500 degrees Fahrenheit)
•    Replace if coating is scratched as surface could flake into food Care:
•    Use soapy water and sponge or dishcloth to clean non-stick fry pans
•    If oil or grease builds up on the bottom of the pan, it is okay to use a non-abrasive cleaner and sponge or cleaning pad noted on label as “non-stick safe”
•    Abrasive cleaners and pads will scratch the non-stick surface

Non-Stick or Alternate Fry Pans?
Non-stick fry pans provide many benefits in your kitchen. Food does not stick to non-stick fry pans, which cuts down on prep time and allows for easy, faster clean up. There are many other benefits as well when compared to standard surface fry pans, like reduced need for fats and oils, leading to healthier cooking.
Stainless steel cookware is actually very common thanks to its reasonable price tag and a number of qualities, for instance good tensile strength, excellent corrosion resistance and non-reaction with alkaline and acidic materials. Making use of stainless-steel cookware enables making use of a smaller amount oil and it keeps the nutritious value of foods. The drawback is that stainless steel does not conduct heat well, so the cookware needs a thick aluminum or copper core in the bottom and, occasionally, the sides to conduct heat much more evenly and also make the cookware much more responsive to heat. Stainless steel cookware care is actually fairly simple because it can be cleaned in the dishwasher and scraped using nylon pads. Special stainless-steel cleaners can help bring the shine back.

Non-stick cookware is definitely a blessing while cooking and also reheating sticky types of food. This coated surface also means you'll need a smaller amount oil or fat whilst frying on it. But you have to be very careful while using as well as washing non-stick cookware. Avoid scrapes on the surface or it'll lose its properties. {Use just wooden, plastic, or coated utensils whenever cooking. Clean in hot soap and water but never in a dishwasher.

Cast iron is actually relatively low-cost, conducts heat evenly and also when heated, and retains it for a long time. Such cookware is excellent for deep-frying and slow cooking. The main trouble is definitely that it rusts, stains and also becomes pitted when exposed to air, moisture and also particular ingredients. Don't clean cast-iron cookware in soapy water; instead try wiping clean with a paper towel. To stop rusting, remove any excess moisture on the surface and cover with oil just before storing.

•    Lids
o    Does the pan come with a lid?
o    Is the lid made of glass?
o    Does the lid fit snugly?
•    Cleaning and Maintenance
o    Is it dishwasher safe or can you scrub/soak it?

    
The Basics
To set up your kitchen, you'll need most or all of these. You'll probably want two or three saucepans of varying sizes, two or three frying pans and one each of the others. If your space is very limited, just go with the essentials.


    Saucepans  
•    One of the most common cooking pots is the saucepan.
•    These are available in a range of sizes, usually in whole numbers of quarts (1 qt., 2 qt., etc.)
•    Generally, saucepans come with lids.
•    Some saucepans have spouts   for pouring. This is useful when cooking liquidly foods, but may prevent the lid from making a tight seal with the pot.


     Frying Pans  
•    Frying pans (or skillets) are versatile tools in any kitchen.
•    Can be used for frying or sautéing meat, vegetables, tofu, eggs and just about everything else.
•    Specialized omelet pans have sloped sides, making it easier to slide eggs out of the pan, but your average frying pan will work just as well.
•    Frequently lined with non-stick coating for easy cleaning and low-fat cooking (less oil needed to keep food from sticking).
•    Some come with lids.
•    Having a variety of sizes available is frequently useful, but one large pan may be all you need to start your collection.


     Sauté Pans  
•    A large, stainless steel sauté pan is an excellent choice for pan frying and making sauces.
•    Like a skillet with tall sides, this has a big cooking area but can also hold large quantities of liquid.
•    An alternative choice for risotto   or other rice-based dishes.
•    Look for sturdy, oven-safe handles, as these pans often work well in both an oven and on the stove.
•    Also look for a large, preferably glass lid.


     Dutch Ovens and Casseroles  

•    Dutch ovens are large, oval, and usually very heavy pots that are wider and shallower than saucepans.
•    Cast iron   is a good choice for a Dutch oven; it will retain heat well and cook your food evenly.
•    Dutch ovens are a good bet for just about everything. They can go from stove to oven and vice versa. Use them for frying, browning, braising, simmering and making soups and stocks.
•    Look for large, sturdy, and easy to grip handles and a tight-fitting, heavy lid.


     Roasting Pans  
•    Roasting pans are used for roasting meats and poultry (of course).
•    Can also be used for deglazing and making sauces on the stovetop.
•    Look for pans that are sturdy enough to hold up to the heaviest thing you cook (like a turkey) but not so heavy that you might drop it taking it from the oven.
•    Measure your oven before you buy a roasting pan; the pan needs at least 2" of clearance on all sides, and it has to fit inside with the door closed.


    Stockpots 

•    Stockpots are large, heavy pots that can be used for a number of tasks, including steaming vegetables, cooking pasta   and of course, making soups   and stocks.
•    Some models have lids that can be locked in place and double as a strainer   for making pasta.
•    Some stockpots may come with a basket that fits inside and can be used for steaming vegetables. They may also have a colander that nests inside for making pasta.
•    Pots with multiple inserts are sometimes called "multipots. "


     Griddles   and Grill Pans  
•    Griddles and grills are wide, flat pans that sometimes fit over more than one burner.
•    Griddles are smooth, while grills have channels so that fat drains away from the food.
o    Grills are useful for paninis, burgers, steaks and other meat.
o    Griddles are usually used for pancakes and eggs  .
•    For this type of pan, cast iron   is a good bet, because it will distribute heat evenly.
 
          Advanced Equipment
Now that you've got your kitchen set up, maybe you want to add a few specialty items for fancier cooking and more elaborate dishes. The items below are not necessary but can add a little pizzazz to your dinner table. While they can be used for a number of dishes, they aren't as versatile as the basics above.


        Chef's Pan - Sauciere 
•    Somewhere between a saucepan and a frying pan is the saucier, also known as a chef's pan.
•    Has taller sides than a frying pan, but wider and shallower than a saucepan. The saucier is perfect for whipping up perfect sauces and risottos.
•    Rounded bottom eliminates hard-to-reach corners and makes constant stirring easy.
•    Wider pans are easier to stir and use; heavier pans distribute heat more thoroughly, but make sure they aren't too heavy.


         Braisers  
•    Braisers (also called "everyday pans") are pans that have two short handles instead of a long handle.
•    Somewhere between a chef's pan and a Dutch oven in shape.
•    Usually come with a lid.
•    Can be used for a wide variety of tasks, but not strictly necessary if your other cookware is up to snuff.
•    Might be a good choice if you need something lighter to cook with besides your Dutch oven.


         Double Boilers  
•    Double boilers are a nifty little invention in which the pan containing the sauce you want to cook (such as a chocolate sauce   or cheese fondue) is held in place over the second pan, which is half-filled with water. The whole contraption is placed on the stove, and steam from the boiling water warms the contents of the upper pan (hence "double boiler").
•    Useful in baking (melt chocolate   for brownies   without scorching), cooking (easily melt butter and keep it warm without worrying about it burning), making delicate sauces, and entertaining.
•    Available in a variety of sizes, although usually a small one will do.


    Woks  
•    Woks are pans with high sloping sides.
•    Can have flat or round bottoms.
•    Very versatile and excellent for stir-fry.
•    Also come in electric varieties.
•    Round-bottomed woks require a separate stand to remain upright on a cooktop.
•    Make sure to get one that works with your stove.
There are potential risks in some cookware materials. Aluminum and Teflon-lined pots, pans and bakeware are safest when kept in good condition and used properly. Stainless steel, enameled or well-seasoned cast iron and porcelain cookware are best.


     Aluminum
Plain aluminum cookware is low-cost, light-weight, and thermally responsive – but aluminum is reactive. Foods cooked in aluminum can react with the metal to form aluminum salts associated with impaired visual motor coordination and Alzheimer’s disease; however there is no definite link proven. More than half of all cookware sold today is made of aluminum.

SUGGESTIONS:
•    Keep aluminum cookware on good condition – When cooking with aluminum pots, the more pitted and worn out the pot, the greater amount of aluminum will be absorbed.
•    Minimize food storage time in aluminum – The longer food is cooked or stored in aluminum, the greater the amount that gets into food.
•    Avoid cooking highly acidic foods in aluminum – Aluminum cookware manufacturers warn that storing highly acidic or salty foods such as tomato sauce, rhubarb, or sauerkraut in aluminum pots may cause more aluminum than usual to enter the food.


      Anodized aluminum
Anodized aluminum has been treated to develop an aluminum oxide (extremely hard and non-reactive) coating on the surface of the cookware. Commercial Aluminum Company, the manufacturer of Calphalon, a best-selling brand of anodized aluminum cookware, claims that a final stage in the anodization process seals the aluminum, preventing any leaching into food. Anodized aluminum cookware doesn’t react to acidic foods, so these pots and pans are good choices for cooking rhubarb and sauces with tomato, wine, and lemon juice.


Stainless steel
Mixing steel with chromium and nickel (18/8 stainless steel is 18% chromium and 8% nickel while 18/10 has 10% nickel) produces a corrosion resistant steel that is both hard wearing and easy to clean. Stainless steel cookware is considered one of the best and safest choices in cookware.

SUGGESTION:
Avoid using abrasive materials when cleaning stainless steel cookware – Stainless steel cookware can become a problem if an abrasive material is used frequently to clean it thereby releasing small amounts of chromium and nickel. Nickel is not poisonous in small quantities but it can cause an allergic reaction. People with nickel allergies should avoid cooking with stainless steel cookware.
Copper with stainless steel lining
Copper exterior requires more care but imparts the utensil with copper’s excellent thermal properties. Stainless steel/copper cookware is considered among the best and safest choices in cookware.


Copper
Copper pans are often coated with another metal that prevents the copper from coming into contact with food. Small amounts of the coating can be dissolved by food, especially acidic food, when cooked or stored for long periods.

SUGGESTIONS:

•    Not for people with nickel allergies – Nickel is one of the metals used in coating, so anyone allergic to nickel should avoid nickel-coated cookware.
•    Avoid abrasive materials when cleaning – Coated copper cookware can lose its protective layer if scoured.
•    Avoid uncoated copperware – Don’t use badly scratched or uncoated copper cookware to cook or store food.


Teflon and Silverstone

Non-stick finishes like Teflon and Silverstone scratch easily and may release little bits of inert plastic into the food when cooked, as well as toxic fumes over high heat. DuPont studies show that Teflon off gases toxic particulates at 446°F. At 680°F Teflon pans release at least six toxic gases, including two carcinogens. DuPont acknowledges that the fumes can sicken people, a condition called “polymer fume fever.”

SUGGESTIONS:
•    Consider replacing your Teflon cookware
•    Do not overheat Teflon cookware – Nonstick coatings are a risk is if they are over-heated. This can happen if an empty pan is left on a burner. In this case, the fumes released can be irritating or hazardous. If you plan to continue using Teflon, only cook foods at
low heat.
•    Keep pet birds away when cooking with Teflon – Households with pet birds should be aware that Teflon fumes pose a hazard to birds.


Cast iron
Plain cast-iron is thick and dense cookware for unparalleled heat capacity. The thickness also results in even heating; however, the thickness also requires more time (and energy) to heat up. Cooking with cast iron also provides a source of an important nutrient.
Some nutritionists suggest that foods cooked in unglazed cast iron contain twice or more the amount of iron they would contain otherwise. Cast-iron utensils, although considered very safe to use, should be handled differently from other utensils.

SUGGESTIONS:
•    Keep cookware well-coated – To prevent rust damage, the inside of cast iron cookware should be coated frequently with unsalted cooking oil.
•    Use detergents sparingly – It should not be washed with strong detergents or scoured and should be wiped dry immediately after rinsing.


Ceramic, enameled and glass
Cookware made properly of enamel-coated iron and steel is safe to cook with, according to the FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition. Because of the high firing temperatures required, lead which could present a safety concern is not used in the enamel for this cookware. Some older enamel cookware contained the potentially toxic substance cadmium, which was sometimes contained in the red, yellow and orange pigments used to color the interior of enamel cookware. Cadmium was used mostly by foreign manufacturers. But manufacturers have discontinued its use, and consumers today are not in danger of cadmium poisoning from enamelware marketed today.
Some countries do not have strict lead and cadmium limits. If you bring in glazed ceramic cookware from abroad, be aware that it
may not meet permitted levels for lead and cadmium.


        Crock-pots and terra cotta
Considered safe for cooking. However, lead has been used in some glazes for slow-cooking pots (crock-pots). But, in tests done in 1987, FDA found that the amount of lead that leached into food from these pots did not exceed FDA standards. As a general rule,
terra cotta cookware without lead glaze is the best choice.
To ensure safety in using pottery dishes or cookware, ensure that there is a label that reads, “Safe for food use.” It is also best to avoid using pottery items such as pitchers or mugs from Mexico or Latin America due to the potential high levels of lead.


       Plastic
Using plastic containers and wrap for anything other than their original purpose can cause health problems. Don’t use plastic bowls or wrap in the microwave unless they are labeled as microwave safe. If you reuse items for storage, such as dairy product containers, let the food cool before storing, then refrigerate it immediately. Never heat or store food in plastic containers that were not intended for food.


       Bamboo
Bamboo steamers and paddles as well as wooden spoons, chopsticks and crockery are non-reactive and considered to have no harmful effects on food during cooking. Bamboo steamers are dishwasher safe, and bamboo is also an earth-friendly, renewable resource.
Cooking and storing tips to reduce toxicity
•    Store your food in glass, not plastic
•    Do not use Styrofoam cups for drinking (especially hot drinks!)
•    When cooking, keep your kitchen well ventilated. Turn on your oven fan or open a window.
•    Plastic cookware handles that get too hot may emit toxic fumes. Choose cookware with handles that stay cool on the stovetop for a reasonable amount of time but are oven-safe (e.g. glass/ceramic or stainless steel tubular).
•    Never use scouring powders, scouring pads, or other abrasives on ‘microwave safe’ cookware.
•    Avoid eating leftover food that has been stored for more than one day.


     Induction Cooking
Induction cooking uses 90% of the energy produced compared to only 55% for a gas burner and 65% for traditional electric ranges.
Cooking food at home may have just gotten safer and easier, thanks to the help of an induction cooktop that controls and intensifies heat using electromagnetism. However, this is no new phenomenon. Induction cooking has been around for decades but until recently never made it past a restaurant’s kitchen.
How does it work?
Traditional electric cooktops use some form of electric resistance to create heat, which is transferred to the saucepan and its contents. Induction cooking is based on magnetic fields: each ‘element’ (an induction coil) generates a magnetic field that induces heat in steel cookware placed on top of it. In essence, the pot becomes the element that cooks the food, so the cooktop surface doesn’t get as hot as other cooktops. Induction cooktops have the same instant control as gas and are the fastest of all cooktop types to heat and cook food.
THE ONLY STIPULATIONS INCLUDE:
•    pots and pans must be made of steel, cast iron or other combinations of metals that will react with the magnetic field.
•    a kitchen must be wired for 220 volts (which is not likely if you are using gas).
WHAT’S MORE, THE INDUCTION COOKTOP IS MORE ENERGY EFFICIENT:
•    Induction cooking uses 90% of the energy produced compared to only 55% for a gas burner and 65% for traditional electric ranges.
•    Induction provides extremely fast boil and re-boil, over 50% faster than gas or electric
The surface of the cooktop does not heat up, so overflows and spills do not stick. The cooking surface stays cool even during the cooking cycle.
About the Magnetic Factor
Induction cooking uses the transfer of magnetic energy (magnetic coils) — rather than flames or electric elements — to generate heat. Within this magnetic field, molecules in the pan jumble around at very high frequencies; the friction creates instant heat.
If consumers are curious if the pans, they already own are capable of induction cooking, all they have to do is hold a magnet to the bottom of the pan. If the magnet sticks, the pan will work with induction.
Cleaning
Induction cooktops are easy to clean. They have a continuous surface with no dirt traps, and the controls are touch-sensitive, so there are no knobs to clean around. Because the surface doesn’t get as hot as other electric cooktops, most spillages won’t bake on, although you do have to be careful with sugar because it can still pit the surface. On the downside, some models don’t have a lip around the edge to contain spills, and you may have to buy a special cream to keep it streak-free.
Cost
Induction cook tops are expensive.

 


"FREE"

   You are welcome to download from our site "for your personal use".  

 

                                 

Click below for

 

-QT's Link Exchange-

Cut and Paste our logo below on your site. We provide reciprocal links for those sites that are relevant to our content. All links are verified on a weekly basis. Those that do not reciprocate the link are removed.

Click below for Link: 

 

Please bookmark Quicktip.com and share it with others. It is a work in progress, content continuously being added.

Your Suggestions and Submission tips are always appreciated
   


Back toTop of Page

 

Legal: Lyntren Communications, Inc. provides no compensation to contributors. Lyntren reserves the right to refuse any and all submissions. Lyntren Communications does not return any submissions or entries. The information contained in QuickTip.com is "AS IS", "WITH ALL FAULTS". User assumes all risk of use, damage, or injury. You agree that we have no liability for any damages whatsoever. We are not liable for any consequential, incidental, indirect, or special damages. You indemnify us for claims caused by you.

 

  Copyright. QuickTip.com 2017-2020 All Rights Reserved

Division of Lyntren Communications, Incorporated