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Old 09-23-09, 12:43 PM   #1
artifice
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Cooks of Foo- what cookware?

Its time to upgrade my hand-me-downs, so I'm in the market for a set of cookware. For you gourmet people, I'm looking in the <$200 mark for a set, so all-clad is out of the deal.

I'm wondering- nonstick v. stainless?

Any brand recommendations or details I should look for?
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Old 09-23-09, 12:52 PM   #2
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Here is what I use.

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Phobias are for irrational fears. Fear of junk ripping badgers is perfectly rational. Those things are nasty.
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Old 09-23-09, 12:54 PM   #3
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I never have cared for non-stick because the teflon always ends up peeling off and in your food.

This Macy's set is fairly good.
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Old 09-23-09, 12:55 PM   #4
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I'm wondering- nonstick v. stainless?
I use my nonstick and my stainless equally..with only a $200 budget, I would get a few great pieces of each..instead of getting one whole set of ok quality stuff....that's my opinion anyway
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Old 09-23-09, 12:56 PM   #5
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Here is what I use.

Now that the meat is a little cooked it is time to add the potatoes to that stew.
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Old 09-23-09, 12:57 PM   #6
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I use my nonstick and my stainless equally..with only a $200 budget, I would get a few great pieces of each..instead of getting one whole set of ok quality stuff....that's my opinion anyway
How do I decide which pieces should be what? Stainless stock pot, nonstick pans?
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Old 09-23-09, 12:59 PM   #7
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Ho do I decide which pieces should be what? Stainless stock pot, nonstick pans?
I have stainless stock pots and both stainless and nonstick pans, IMO it's better to have your pans in both seeing that you use them more...and in my experience...the teflon doesn't come off as long as you don't put them in the dishwasher...wash them by hand and they'll last a long time
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Old 09-23-09, 12:59 PM   #8
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yardsale revereware ftw!!!



plus a cast iron skillet



All of these should be <$1 per pot (yardsale)

(but I'd buy them all new if I had to)
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Old 09-23-09, 01:02 PM   #9
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yardsale revereware ftw!!!

haha that is what my mom has. Frankly, I think cleaning the copper is a PITA.

I'd like a nice, matching set though- I've had my share of hand-me-downs.
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Old 09-23-09, 01:02 PM   #10
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How do I decide which pieces should be what? Stainless stock pot, nonstick pans?
If you are going to piece it together, A cast iron skillet, a Le Creuset Dutch oven, and Calphalon everything else.
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Old 09-23-09, 01:03 PM   #11
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If you are going to piece it together, Calphalon everything and a cast iron skillet.
I have seen a lot of Calphalon at TG Maxx/Marshall's, and considered collecting pieces over time. Even there, that stuff would extend my 'budget', but at least over time instead of one $400 CC swipe.
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Old 09-23-09, 01:03 PM   #12
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haha that is what my mom has. Frankly, I think cleaning the copper is a PITA.
I was going to say it's stainless on the inside but then I realized you intend to clean the outside!
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Old 09-23-09, 01:04 PM   #13
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Now that the meat is a little cooked it is time to add the potatoes to that stew.
I make them eat the rest of the ingredients before they get in. When I see potato's in the water, I know it is done................
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Phobias are for irrational fears. Fear of junk ripping badgers is perfectly rational. Those things are nasty.
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Old 09-23-09, 01:04 PM   #14
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haha that is what my mom has. Frankly, I think cleaning the copper is a PITA.

I'd like a nice, matching set though- I've had my share of hand-me-downs.
then my advice is to get married and register for a complete new set ..sets worth a damn are expensive

and I might be the only person who doesn't use the cast iron skillets that I have...
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Old 09-23-09, 01:05 PM   #15
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We've got a couple of all-clad pots that cost more then $200 each. Wife and I are foodies though.

Never mind the non-stick. Stainless is good.

If you have one nearby, Costco has some nice stainless sets. Or did, the last time I looked.
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Old 09-23-09, 01:05 PM   #16
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I'm a firm believer that you need to hold cookware in your hand before buying, checking for weight, balance, etc. I have a full set of All-Clad, which I very highly recommend, but it's not perfect, at least for me. For one thing, the so-called "saute pan" has high vertical sides, meaning that you can't really saute in it (not with a classic wrist-flip, anyway), and the balance on this pan isn't great (for me, but maybe that's because I have small hands). I have supplemented the set with a few pieces from Calphalon- for some things I really like the hard anodized steel, although I wouldn't want that to be my entire set.

But that said, I'd recommend that you look into the Cuisinart stainless set- about $115 at Amazon.

Also, you might find it helpful to hang out at your local Tar-jay and just play with a bunch of different pieces, from sets and from open stock.

To underscore vtjim's post- skip the non-stick. A well-cured cast iron skillet will do the trick, and when it's right you can fry an egg on it with minimal fat. And, you won't kill any parakeets .
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Old 09-23-09, 01:06 PM   #17
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If you are going to piece it together, A cast iron skillet, a Le Creuset Dutch oven, and Calphalon everything else.
My current lust item.
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Old 09-23-09, 01:08 PM   #18
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then my advice is to get married and register for a complete new set
thats what my mom said about the kitchen aid mixer.

which i went and bought for myself since she would rather give me cash and stuff I don't need for xmas.
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Old 09-23-09, 01:11 PM   #19
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We've got a couple of all-clad pots that cost more then $200 each. Wife and I are foodies though.

Never mind the non-stick. Stainless is good.

If you have one nearby, Costco has some nice stainless sets. Or did, the last time I looked.
yeah, I think I am relegated to stainless stee at my pricepoint, otherwise I will likely run into the teflon-in-food issue in a couple years.

i would love all-clad. until i get settled in a permanent home (i.e. not renting/moving every 12-months), I'd consider the investment.
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Old 09-23-09, 01:13 PM   #20
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Old 09-23-09, 01:14 PM   #21
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We have a bunch of assorted items, but I'll tell you what my wife uses most (and we cook dinner almost every night), on a smooth-top electric stove:

large cast iron skillet
medium cast iron skillet
small non-stick pan for eggs (with plastic spatula)
large steel pot, nothing fancy, no idea what the brand is

not very often:
cast iron dutch oven for stews, but that's not that often
small steel pot similar to what Hardy pictured above, for small pasta dishes and grits
I do have a very nice egg pan and wok, the only 2 things I saved when I moved back from Denver (everything else went to Goodwill)

I definitely think a cast iron skillet is going on my must-have list.
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Old 09-23-09, 01:14 PM   #22
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Court and I cook in the same style it appears.

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Phobias are for irrational fears. Fear of junk ripping badgers is perfectly rational. Those things are nasty.
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Old 09-23-09, 01:19 PM   #23
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Court and I cook in the same style it appears.

Do you prefer truck antennae or old umbrellas for your skewers?
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Old 09-23-09, 01:20 PM   #24
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I do have a very nice egg pan and wok, the only 2 things I saved when I moved back from Denver (everything else went to Goodwill)

I definitely think a cast iron skillet is going on my must-have list.
if you're ever in Charlotte, you can come get mine...I never use them
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Old 09-23-09, 01:22 PM   #25
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I have the calphalon tri-ply 13 piece set. $379 isn't a bad price, its usually $400 and I rarely see it on sale. The stainless steel is inert to acidic food ingredients like tomato sauce. Aluminum is not. I preferred the handles on the calphalon to the all-clad. I don't use the pasta strainer much anymore, I find it easier to dump pasta into a collander in the sink then throw it back in the pan. If you're going to put it straight on a plate instead of the pan, it might be nice (I make a pound at a time for just me).

Eggs might stick to the pan. I just throw some water in them and soak till the next night. A nylon bristle brush or even a sponge will clean it up quickly then.

I had an ex-girlfriend comment about getting married for the registry gifts... but I'm running out of things to put on there
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