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Pop Up Challenge : Cook ware types : What do you prefer?

Non stick , stainless steel , enameled or cast iron . What cook ware do you prefer to use and why?

The best posts will be awarded a Food Champions Challenge Badge

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I like to use cast iron skillets and Dutch ovens . Mainly due to heat retention . For pasta I use a Le Creuset 5 litre pasta pot . It doubles up for soups and stews too .

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Stainless steel but mostly non stick - Swiss Diamond and Pyrolux. My favourite is my non stick Pyrolux Ignite frying pan. It’s heavier than a lot of non stick pan, cooks beautifully on a slightly lower heat and cleans easily.

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We use non-stick, stainless steel, aluminium, enameled cast iron, Pyrex/Corning Ware and pottery regularly…each have their own purpose and functions. Some are old, some are hand-me-downs and others relatively new.

  • non-stick for fast frying foods
  • stainless steel saucepans for boiling and steaming
  • Pyrex/Corning Ware for baking
  • Aluminium trays for biscuit baking
  • Enameled cast iron/pottery for slow cooked dishes
  • Pottery for special dishes such as Vietnamese clay pots

Don’t really have a favourite, but do love eating everything cooked on them.

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I use copper based stainless steel saucepans and stock pot. While not entirely free from leaching, s/s is less of a risk than some other metals and coatings, heats faster, keeps the temperature even, and it’s easy to clean-up.

My frypan is non-stick, because no matter how careful I am some food always gets stuck in the pan and it’s a pain to clean.
Same with baking tins and trays, although I also grease and flour to avoid damaging the surface while trying to clean off that stuck piece of dough or muffin.

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We use one piece cast iron frying pans and skillets from an aussie company called SolidTechniks. Also have a one piece non nickel stainless steel saucepan with skillet lid for soups and slow cooking. The lid can be used separately for cooking things like crepes, pancakes, eggs etc…
Once seasoned the frying pans are (mostly) non stick and exceptionally easy to clean. Are rather heavy due to the thickness of the material.

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Why does the presence of nickel matter?

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Supposedly nickel has some health issues. But then so too does chromium.
Take both out of stainless steel then you have, well, just steel.

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Thanks for the input @kevinm and welcome to the forum . I like SolidTecniks skillets too . They are lighter than cast iron due to being forged and season up really well .

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Some people supposedly react to small amounts of nickel - e.g. eczema/dermatitis - which may be leached in via the cooking process. I suppose anything to reduce a risk when cooking (Stainless Steel Leaches Nickel and Chromium into Foods During Cooking)
This type of stainless steel is what they class as a ferritic SS which has good corrosion resistance in mildly corrosive environments and good resistance to oxidation at elevated temperatures. It is supposedly a better conductor of heat than normal stainless steel.

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Thanks @vax2000 - they are good pans. I particularly like the little cutout of Australia on the handle - they even included Tassie…

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Just a minor point. They are not cast iron. They are pressed out from sheets of low carbon steel. As the raw product is a bright finish, it suggests they are cold pressed which is what they are saying here,

We have developed two ranges of innovative, Australian made world-first cookware: AUS-ION™ wrought iron (formed low-carbon steel)

SolidTechniks also describe this as ‘wrought’ iron, in reference to the similarity of how some pots and pans were made in the old days.

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We prefer Stainless Steel, Cast Iron and enamelled Cast Iron. They all excel in different areas of cooking food. We prefer the enamelled Cast Iron for stews, casseroles, lasagna, cottage pie and similar. Cast Iron for really hot frying and Dutch oven cooking. Stainless for everything else except for one non stick option for fried eggs and omelette (kept exclusively for that purpose).

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Stainless steel grades 304, 316 and 430 are widely accepted as food grade, and recognised by Australian and International Standards.

430 is an alloy steel with chromium and zero nickel.
304 and 316 are an alloy of chromium and nickel.

All are widely used in food production and processing. Other than fresh fruit that has been hand packed nearly every food product we purchase and consume has been in contact with stainless steel at one point or another. From the machine that may have produced the ice in our super kale, carrot and ginger smoothie to the chute the organic oats for breakfast slid down before packaging it’s a regular part of everyday living.

P.S.

Typically 430 grade, which is magnetic making it suitable for induction cooking.

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Probably a late response:

I have a mixture of pans and cooking stuff. Glass bakeware, metal bakeware… non stick stuff I don’t trust and will oil /paper.

I have a cast iron skillet I bought from IKEA of all places that hasn’t rusted and I treat it badly. I have an enameled pan, and another non stick frypan to replace a different one.

Aldi does a good cast enamel pot!

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I use a couple of SolidTecniks wrought iron frying pans which I love. They have been seasoned with rice bran oil and have a pretty durable non stick surface now. If anything lifts the seasoning it’s only a 5 minute job to reapply it. As well as those, there are stainless steel pots, a couple of enamelled cast iron casseroles and a mild steel wok. And a SS pressure cooker.

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Welcome to the forum @wraith_oz and thanks for your input .

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For stir-frying I use a seasoned steel wok. For frying steak and fish, I use cast iron pans. For other cooking I use a variety of copper-based stainless steel pots and pans. I also use a cast iron pot and Dutch ovens for slow cooking. In addition I use a couple of porcelain casserole dishes. I have used a number of non-stick frying pans but they are never as good as cast iron pans or a seasoned wok. My pet hates are those non-stick baking pans which peel after a while.

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I really dislike non-stick in general due to the erosion of the surface over time - bad for your health and bad for the environment. I love stainless steel of good quality such as Italian brand Esteel. And noting that I have ruined those pots with rice left unsupervised! Enameled wear such as Le Creuset is awesome providing you understand the temperature restrictions of light and dark interiors. And I adore cast iron! Well seasoned and looked after you can have almost a non-stick surface. It takes temperatures of low or high. And the nostalgia of my grandmother’s good cooking is with me every time I bring out my pans :slight_smile: In terms of price it’s affordable to anyone. :slight_smile: :slight_smile:

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