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Non-stick or not?

Discussion in 'Cookery' started by tartetatin, Jul 13, 2011.

  1. tartetatin

    tartetatin New commenter

    Hello,
    I need to replace my (Tefal non-stick) pots and pans. While making a white sauce tonight, I noticed that some of the non-stick coating was flaking off into the sauce! In fairness though, I have had them for a few years now.
    Not sure if I should buy non-stick again though. I'm a lazy cook, so love the non-stick element ... but don't want to have to replace a full set again.
    Is there nowadays such a thing as a durable non-stick coating - or should I bite the bullet and go for stainless steel? Your thoughts or product recommendations would be appreciated.
    Thank you! [​IMG]
     
  2. Si N. Tiffick

    Si N. Tiffick Occasional commenter

    I've got a set of Anolon pans- the hard anodised ones that were given to me by a friend when I was setting up house again after my divorce. They say they are not dishwasher proof- as far as I can make out this refers to the finish of the outside of the pans- they started off with a brished matt look which is fading but the insides are fine.
    To be honest, though, I tend to use stainless steel pans with a heavy sandwich base for most of my cooking, plus a couple of small non stick pans for heating things up in, and a heavy non stick frying pan and wok. Other than that I use cast iron Le Creuset casseroles. I don't think I'd shell out for the Anolon pans myself.
     
  3. tartetatin

    tartetatin New commenter

    Thanks very much for your prompt reply.
    I've just googled Anolon and it sounds ideal ... EXCEPT for the part about them not being dishwasher proof.
    Slattern that I am, this rules it out for me!
     
  4. Si N. Tiffick

    Si N. Tiffick Occasional commenter

    The way I see it, if they don't go in the dishwasher, they're no frigging use to me...so I just bung them in the dishwasher anyway. As I say, the only difference has been a cosmetic change in the appearance of the outside of the pans- the insides are fine after 6 years of heavy use. I think most non stick pans say they are not dishwasher proof- I recently bought a new Tefal non stick frying pan and it said it was not dishwasher proof. It goes in, all the same.
     
  5. Si N. Tiffick

    Si N. Tiffick Occasional commenter

  6. modelmaker

    modelmaker Occasional commenter

    I spent the first part of my cooking life battling with pans. All the pretty ones are useless. To be honest, in my early days they were either cheap teflon coated aluminium ones or glass pans from the Vision range. They were all nothing but trouble.
    My life changed some 25 years ago when I bought a set of stainless steel pans with heavy bottoms. I would never again use anything else. The pans don't stick unless I really abuse them, and by this I mean letting things boil dry in them while I am otherwise engaged. But they can take a good scouring and be restored to as new condition.
    That 25 year old set will see us out. If I'd bought them 40 years ago when I moved out of my parent's home, they would still be giving good service.
    Do yourself a real favour and invest in good quality stainless pans. You will never look back.
    And good quality knives as well while you're at it. That's another thing people frequently make mistakes over.
    There is a simple truth in life that sooner or later clicks. Poor people can't afford to buy cheap things. If only the kind souls who bought my original wife and I a single good quality pan instead of a set of 6 naff ones as a wedding present understood this. And if only I had the appreciation at that time to understand their kindness in doing so.
    It's my belief that if you buy good quality at the outset, it will never need to be replaced and is a joy to own for all your life.
     
  7. egyptgirl

    egyptgirl Senior commenter

    Great post, MM. I agree with everything you've said.
     
  8. grandelf

    grandelf New commenter

  9. When I left home at the age of 18, my mother gave me a solid omelette pan which I still have and use 40 years later. Other than that I had a hideous collection of pots and pans for years until about 15 or so years ago Mr C, fed up with my whingeing, invested a small fortune in some stainless steel lined copper pans which we bought in France.
    They are wonderful. Heavy yes and they do need polishing of course but are a joy to cook in. I fully expect them to outlast me. I do have a non stick frying pan but that is the only one. I really don't see the need for them.
     
  10. I have two battered cast iron frying pans - one large, one small, which are *ancient* (at least from the 30s, maybe older).
    Would never part with them. They are wonderful.
    I also have a couple of stainless steel pans (not pretty, but brill).
    And two adonised roasting/casserole pots.
    All get thrown around, washed to bits - and still survive!
    Most of my stuff is not pretty - but sturdy and they are old faithful friends.

     
  11. tartetatin

    tartetatin New commenter

    Wow, brilliant replies, thank you all very much.
    Totally agree with the poster who commented that you get what you pay for and as you say, this applies to knives 100%. That's actually another thing I have to replace, due to buying cheap in the first place.
    Can't help but think that the lovely heavy steel pans are for you good and serious cooks. They'd be wasted on a cuisine pleb like me! [​IMG]
    Have seen a set of the anodised ones half price on Debenhams online. Says that they are dishwasher safe?? If that's true, then I may go for it ...
     
  12. modelmaker

    modelmaker Occasional commenter

    They're not.
    Buy one and see how you get on with it. If it doesn't show you how easier it is to cook with and transform you from a cuisine pleb into a cook, you wouldn't have wasted a lot.
    Do you want some science? Aluminim has a greater thermal conductivity than stainless steel. It's about 10 times as greater. It makes it more 10 times more difficult to control the height of the flame on your hob or if you're electric where to set the ****. Alumininum is good for boiling as it's very efficient. It's useless if you're trying to cook at a controlled heat.
    Cookers don't help either, with their different sized burners.

     
  13. I know I am an old-fashioned fuddy duddy, but I would never, ever buy a SET of pans.
    I have collected all mine as I needed them.
    None of them match. All of them have different properties.
    All of them are great.
    All of them do their job.

     
  14. modelmaker

    modelmaker Occasional commenter

    How about if I gave you a winnining lottery ticket to spend mostly as as you wish, but it was conditional on you buying a decent set of pans...
    Would you head for a boot fair or John Lewis?
     
  15. I'm on my second set of hard anodised.
    The first set were NOT dishwasher proof and all that happened is the outside colour fades to a gunmetal grey. Its only cosmetic and no problem at all.
    My current set IS dishwasher proof, Circulon Infinite 5-piece set- currently half price on Amazo.
    I did a lot of research before I bought them and have not been disappointed and they go through the dishwasher daily!
     
  16. None of my pans are from a boot fair, MM!

     

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