What to Consider When Purchasing Cookware

By: Bob Cummins

There are many types of cookware sets to choose from. There are all kinds of gourmet cookware sets hard anodized, stainless steel, enamel, non stick and cast iron just to name a few. The selection is so large that it could be overwhelming.

I consider myself somewhat of an amateur chef. I learned alot by watching many of the gourmet cooking shows that are on television. I also subscribe to several gourmet-cooking magazines. Plus it also helps when your bother in-law is professional chef.

I purchased my first gourmet cookware set many years ago. I bought this set because it was one of the most highly rated sets and very popular at that time. I also could use the cooking utensils that I already had. I didn't have to worry about scratching it like you do with a non stick set. I figured this would be the only cookware I would ever need and I would just add to it as needed. However, over time, I found this not to be the case and this would not be the only set I would ever have.

I found that the best cookware to choose really depends on the dish or meal that you are going to prepare. As an example,if you're preparing a low fat meal you would most likely use a non stick skillet to cut down on the amount of fat in the dishes you prepare. If you were making meals that started off with sauteing or browning first and then finished the cooking in the oven, I would use cookware that was oven safe and could go from the cooktop burner right into the oven. This also saves time on clean up because you're using less pots and pans when you cook this way.

When grilling or preparing meals outdoors I prefer something very durable like cast iron. It is also my skillet of choice when making fried chicken. A lot of people would shy away from cast iron because it had to be pre-seasoned before you could being cooking with it. However nowadays many manufacturers of cast iron cookware sell it already pre-seasoned and ready to use. Cast iron is probably one of the oldest cookware sets around. Many grandmothers and great grandmothers had this type of cookware for a lifetime.

In Summary: After many years, it has been my experience that there really is no one "do all" set of cookware. In my opinion it really depends on the type of meal you are preparing and the type of cooking you are doing.

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