Archive for the ‘Cookware’ category

How To Choose A Saucepan Set

September 22nd, 2010

In our kitchens today most of us have a sauce pan set in some shape or form and most of us have had them for many years. Whether your purchasing a saucepan set for the first time, replacing your old cookware or upgrading to a professional saucepan set you have a wide choice available in the market today.

As with all purchases your budget will be the first consideration. If you are on a tight budget then ensure you are not buying more pans than you need and you are also buying the right types of pan for you requirement. Sauce pans are normally measured by diameter and the volume in comparable between manufacturers. A milk pan normally the smallest saucepan will have a spout to aid pouring of hot milk for that late night hot chocolate. Below gives you a rough idea of the diameters and capacity of saucepans.

Type Diameter Capacity

Milkpan

14.00cm 5.51” 0.9 litres 1½ pints
Saucepan 14.00cm 5.51” 1 litre 1¾ pints

Saucepan

16.00cm 6.30” 1.5 litres 2¾ pints
Saucepan 18.00cm 7.09” 2 litres 3½ pints
Saucepan 20.00cm 7.87” 2.8 litres 5 pints

Design

Saucepan sets come in various styles from the classic sauce pan with straight sides to the Windsor pan which has sloping sides, round base and a flat bottom. This can mainly be used for sauces but is not a versatile as the classic sauce pan. The lid of the pan should be tight fitting and the handle on the lid can either be a knob or a loop. The loop is easier to pick when using oven gloves. The handle should be of medium size and feel comfortable to hold. If you try feel the saucepan in the hand before purchasing then you will get a good idea the feel a balance of the sauce pan. Make sure all the saucepans in the set have a good balance and feel. The handle can be made out of a heat resistant material so it shouldn’t get hot while on the stove or over hanging another burner however this is totally the case.

Saucepans can come in various materials or combination of material for example copper, aluminium, cast iron, stainless steel and non-stick. Copper saucepans are probably the most traditional but also expensive. The main problem with copper saucepans are they difficult to clean.

Which ever saucepan set you choose from a stainless steel saucepan set from Stellar Cookware or  a le creuset saucepan set, look after them well and they should give you years of enjoyable cooking.

Why Use Silicone Bakeware

September 15th, 2010

First of all lets dispel or should I say misspell a common problem. There is a difference between silicone and silicon. Silicon is a natural chemical element on Earth, primarily as a major component of sand. Silicone is a man-made substance made from silicon and other chemical. A common form is a rubber like plastic used in kitchen aid because of its heat resistant properties. So you are unlikely to find any silicon bakeware.

Silicone bakeware are those brightly coloured tins, containers and kitchen canisters in the local kitchen store , but many of us traditionalist are wary of change and still prefer a glass metal or ceramic cooking container. However don’t be deterred by change as there are some good reasons to buy silicone bakeware. These are:

Light Weight And Portable

Silicone is light weight in comparison to other cookware which is a definite advantage when lifting that cake into the oven or if you have to travel with your cookware.

Durable

It cannot be chipped or cracked and doesn’t wear like rubber. They can be used in the microwave and cleaned in the dishwasher and you never have to worry about dropping them.

Easy To Store

Because silicone can be moulded into intricate shapes they can come in various shapes and colours. From muffin cases to cake moulds you should be able to find one that fits your needs. Because these are light and flexible they are easy to store even in high awkward to reach cupboards.

Doesn’t Stay Hot

Silicone doesn’t conduct heat in the same way glass, metal or ceramic so it doesn’t take long before you can touch the silicone bakeware.

If you are still not convinced with the benefits of silicone bakeware then you should try to experiment slowly. A perfect item to first trial is the silicone spatula. Heat resistant and available in many colours and sizes silicone is the perfect material for such a kitchen implement. Unlike rubber spatula’s they don’t wear or need trimming. I am sure once you have experiment with such a device you will soon eagerly want to try a silicone bakeware set.