Pot — the main kitchen utensils for cooking
A saucepan is a kitchen utensil that involves the preparation of food by boiling, stewing, simmering, and sometimes even frying over an open fire or in an oven. Without a pan, perhaps, not a single housewife can do.
The progenitor of the pot is the pot. The fundamental difference between one and the other is the presence of handles and a lid in the pan.
Currently, the market is replete with a variety of pots, different in shape, volume, material of manufacture, the possibility of using on various types of cooking surfaces, etc.
Requirements for pans for gas stoves
Almost any pan is suitable for a gas stove. The main thing is to take into account some features of open fire. During cooking, the main heating occurs in the bottom area, so it should be thick.
Pay attention to dishes with a multilayer bottom, it is also called capsule. Such a bottom consists of several layers made of different metals. The number of layers and materials depends on the manufacturer. Capsule technology is usually used for steel utensils. Food in such a pan cooks much faster.
When choosing cookware made of cast iron or aluminum, pay attention to models that have grooves or a circle on the bottom, allowing you to increase the heating area and speed up the cooking process without the risk of food sticking.
A good gas stove pan does not have to be very expensive. The main thing is compliance with the requirements:
- Flat bottom. A product with a flat bottom has a large area of contact with fire, respectively, it warms up faster and more evenly. In addition, it is more stable on the stove.
- Tight fitting lid. The lid should not only be firmly fixed, but also be heavy enough not to fall when tilted at 450.
- Fastener handles. A good pot should have handles screwed on but not welded. If you want to make cooking more comfortable, choose cookware with silicone or Bakelite coated handles. Please note that this is not suitable for cooking in the oven.
- Surface free from scratches and chips. Even the slightest scratches inside can lead not only to burning, but also to the saturation of food with harmful metals.
We select dishes under the hob
Yes, you are not mistaken. This is really very important — not every pot can be placed on a glass cover or gas burner. Let’s figure it out together:
- For electric cookers with a glass-ceramic surface, you cannot use any pots with a rough surface, such as cast iron. Suitable dishes made of stainless steel, glass, Teflon or ceramics, enameled steel.
- For induction panels, it is important that the bottom has magnetic properties — choose metal utensils.
- For gas stoves, it is undesirable to use glass pans. But everything else — without restrictions. True, it is better to put ceramics on a small fire first so that it warms up evenly.
As you can see, this is a really important point: it will be a shame to buy an expensive pan that simply does not heat up or bursts on the first day.
What else is worth paying attention to?
How to choose the size of the pot
For functionality and practicality, the kitchen should have three pots with volumes per liter, 2–2.5 liters and over three liters. Experts advise choosing a volume of one liter per person. If you plan to cook soups, compotes and side dishes for several people, choose a pot with a capacity of at least three liters.
For cooking for one or two people and for cooking vegetables or cereals, a container with a volume of one or two liters is suitable. For cooking eggs and sauces, for heating food on the stove, choose small saucepans or ladles with a volume of up to one liter.
Experts do not advise buying pots from the same set of kitchen utensils. It is more rational to make a set of containers, different in volume and material of manufacture.
An enamel pan is suitable for soups, a ceramic pot for vegetables, and a cast-iron cauldron remains indispensable for meat dishes and pilaf. At the same time, the kitchen must have a universal stainless steel pan, which is suitable for cooking any food and any dishes.
Today there are many manufacturers of stainless steel cookware. You can understand which models are better by studying the characteristics of products and reviews on various sites and forums. We offer a description and rating of different models so that you can determine which brand of stainless steel pots is better and choose the appropriate option.
The optimal number of pots in the kitchen
For a small family, a universal set of 4–5 pots of different sizes is enough. In 1–2 liter saucepans, it is comfortable to heat up food, cook cereals and eggs, and prepare sauces. Be sure to get a medium-sized model (3–4 liters) to cook soups and broths, prepare side dishes for several people. In practice, these two types of pans are used most often at home, so you should not save on them, it is better to purchase two expensive but good-quality products than to regularly change their cheaper counterparts. The most popular materials are stainless steel (good for soups and broths) and non-stick aluminum (for sauces and porridges).
If you prefer to cook for several days at once and store food in the refrigerator right in the pan, pay attention to dishes with enamel or glass-ceramic coating, in which food does not come into contact with the material of the dish, and remains fresh for a long time. Another important thing is a large a 4–5 liter saucepan, in which it is very convenient to boil spaghetti, cook compotes and fruit drinks, or cook soups designed for long-term storage, such as cabbage soup and borscht. If you love pasta and cook it regularly, it makes sense to consider purchasing a special high pot for spaghetti. If you plan to use such dishes for preparing various pickles, we recommend choosing enameled options.
- Advantages of Teflon cookware
Thanks to the non-stick coating, it is suitable for frying without oil, which is important for losing weight.
- Cons of Teflon cookware
Unfortunately, Teflon does not withstand too high temperatures and begins to evaporate at 200 ° C. As a result, toxic substances get into our food, which many experts associate with obesity and thyroid cancer. Also, the coating is quickly destroyed or erased, and it is absolutely impossible to use such dishes with a damaged work surface. It is generally better not to cook dishes for children in Teflon dishes.
- Degree of security: Low
What is the difference between expensive and cheap pans
Often the difference in price depends on the percentage of alloy elements. If the composition contains manganese or copper, these are affordable models that can deform or crack over time. When nickel is included, then the dishes are of higher quality and more expensive options.
The cost is affected by the number of layers of the bottom and walls of the pan. The more of them, the product is stronger and more reliable. Additional elements and fixtures that simplify work in the kitchen also affect the cost of dishes.
Which lid to choose
The pot lid can be either glass or stainless steel. The lid material does not affect the cooking speed or functionality. You can pay attention to some points:
- Lids can be made from borosilicate glass without a metal rim. It is easiest to wash such a cover, smooth glass easily tolerates any detergent. The thick glass is strong, but you don’t need to drop the lid.
- Tempered glass lids with a metal rim are the most common. Manufacturers can make the bezel perforated to drain water without removing the lid. Use the brush to clean the junction between the rim and the lid for a perfect clean.
- Stainless steel lids are most commonly used in restaurants and canteens, and for good reason. This cover is easy to clean, there are no places where dirt can accumulate, and it is simply impossible to break such a cover.
- The steam vent can be made in the form of a hole on the lid itself or in the form of holes on the rim.
- Perfect handle — does not heat up and is comfortable. Handles can be covered with silicone pads, use metal that does not heat up, or make handles from Bakelite. All this is done for comfortable use. Look at the height of the handle and compare with the height of the shelf in the refrigerator where you plan to put this pan.
- Convex lids are more convenient for cooking soups, if there is a place to raise the foam, then it will not flood the stove.
Without a lid, the pan loses its functionality. Which one to buy depends on personal preference. What to look for when choosing the right accessory? Experts recommend to study a variety of options, and choose the best and most practical. In the manufacture of covers, the following raw materials are used:
|Ceramics||They are fragile and afraid of high temperatures. Washing in the dishwasher is provided. Use in an oven is possible. Full compatibility with microwave ovens. Easy and simple to clean. They do not need careful care.|
|Metal||Stainless steel is used in the manufacture. Not afraid of shock and temperature changes. Holds heat very well. It is advisable to wash with soft sponges.|
|Glass||Resistant to cleaning with abrasive compounds, not afraid of scratches. May break if not used carefully. It has a bakelite handle that doesn’t get hot.|
|Wood||Features — environmental cleanliness. Moisture is absorbed quickly. The main purpose is to store ready-made food. Demanding care.|
|Cast iron||Mechanical damage is not afraid. Ideal for storing prepared food. Requires special care. High humidity will cause rust.|
The first thing to consider when choosing a pan is the material from which it is made.
Aluminum without embellishment
Aluminum pans are the cheapest and, compared to others, very light. In addition, aluminum is an excellent conductor of thermal energy, which contributes to rapid heating and, as a result, food cooks faster and does not burn.
The disadvantages include:
- softness — aluminum utensils are very easily deformed;
- high thermal conductivity — aluminum conducts heat well, but does not hold it;
- high chemical activity — in such a pan it is impossible to cook products that contain any acids. This will lead to the destruction of the protective layer and the formation of scale, darkening of the surface. It is strictly not recommended to store cooked food in a saucepan.
There is also an opinion that the use of aluminum cookware can be harmful to health through the release of toxic metal salts. But it should be noted that there is no scientific data confirmed by a number of studies.
Food cools quickly in aluminum pans
Table: rating of aluminum pans with a rating of 5/5 according to the Yandex.Market service
|Saucepan Scovo MT-074 1.5 l||Aluminum pot with lid. May be washed in a washing machine.||199 r.|
|Saucepan Kalitva Classic 3.5 l||Aluminum pot with lid. Single layer bottom.||276 r.|
|Saucepan Scovo МТ-085 10 l||Made from aluminium. Bottom diameter 24.5 cm. Dishwasher safe.||479r.|
Aluminum saucepan “Kalitva” ADVANTAGES: convenient, there are many volumes, easy to clean, inexpensive DISADVANTAGES: I did not find it in 2.5 years. There are already 4 Kalitva pots, including the last one I bought. They are conveniently folded into one another, then I hang them on a hook. I keep the lids in the closet.
Chic in copper
Unlike aluminum, copper conducts heat 2 times better. It is for this reason that many restaurateurs and professional chefs prefer copper utensils, including pots. The heat is distributed quickly and evenly, and the food acquires an incredible taste, while retaining all the beneficial properties by reducing the cooking time. An undoubted advantage is also the antibacterial effect of copper. Food cooked with copper utensils is disinfected due to the ability of copper to fight fungi and bacteria. These pots are exquisite and are sure to be the highlight of any kitchen.
But copper utensils also have their drawbacks:
- high cost;
- care features: in no case should be stored in a humid environment;
- chemical activity of copper: it is very aggressive to ascorbic acid contained in many fruits and berries. Cooking and storing the latter in a copper pan will lead to a loss of vitamins, thereby reducing the nutritional value of the dish.
Restaurateurs prefer to use copper utensils
Table: rating of copper pans with a rating of 5/5 according to the Yandex.Market service
|Copper pot with lid 24 cm||Made of natural copper with an admixture of zinc. The inner lining is made of tin.||15221 r.|
|Copper pot without lid RisoliCountry 20 cm, 01096RM/20SG||The Italian brand is the best in the production of cast copper cookware.||16035 r.|
|Pot KitchenAid KC2P60LCCP 5.68 L||Copper saucepan with glass lid. Layered bottom. Suitable for induction hobs and also for baking in the oven.||18991 r.|
Uncoated copper cookware is life threatening. Inside, they must be tinned with food tin. The dishes are really cool and expensive. I have been using copper cookware for over 10 years. The thicker the walls of the pan, the tastier the soups! And I never use lids. Do not use knives and forks, as this may scratch the inner coating. Copper is very easy to clean, and I didn’t do it so often.
Durable cast iron
Cast iron worked well. Unsightly from the outside, it is fraught with a lot of advantages:
- this pan is universal and suitable for all methods of cooking;
- cast iron is resistant to mechanical damage, and the features of its surface protect food from burning;
- metal holds heat well;
- completely safe for health.
The disadvantages include:
- weight — such a pan will be very heavy;
- the complexity of cleaning — it is washed exclusively by hand. After washing, the pan must be thoroughly wiped or ignited to avoid the formation of rust on it;
- high price.
Cast iron pans are suitable for cooking in any way
Everything ingenious is simple: an enameled pan made of metal alloy
Along with cast-iron housewives, dishes made of steel and metal alloys are also valued. WhatTo simplify the care of such utensils, eliminate corrosion and increase performance, as well as improve its external characteristics, manufacturers cover it with enamel.
- versatility. The most demanding hostess will be able to choose a pan, taking into account the interior features of her kitchen;
- the weight. Enameled pans, except cast iron, are quite light;
- ease of operation and maintenance. They do not require special care and are compatible with most types of hobs.
The disadvantages of such dishes include the fragility of the coating. It depends on how it is applied. When choosing, you need to pay attention to the presence or absence of dark dots — the places for installing fasteners on the body of the dishes from the outside. If they are absent, the coating was applied by spraying and is characterized by less durability and a tendency to rapid wear. The presence of dots indicates the immersion method of coating. Such a pan will be somewhat more expensive, but the enamel will last much longer.
The enamel pot can be used on any type of hob
Table: rating of enamel pots with a rating of 5/5 according to the Yandex.Market service
|Saucepan SteelEmal 1RB201M 3 l||Steel enamel pot with steel lid. Suitable for induction hobs. May be washed in a dishwasher.||454 r.|
|Casserole Lysvensky plant of enamelware S‑1620/4Rb 7 l||Enamelled steel pot. Steel cover included. Suitable for induction cookers. Bottom diameter 22 cm.||592 r.|
|Saucepan SteelEnamel 1RA161S 1.5 l||Enamelled steel saucepan with glass lid. Single layer bottom. Applicable to induction hobs.|
Pan enameled Vitross When I first saw this pan, I fell in love with it at first sight. I liked the pattern on the surface — so gentle. She made a great addition to my kitchen. It is made of high-quality steel, and not from a thin layer, but more than 1 mm, so there are no dents on it. The metal handles are very comfortable. The metal itself is protected by an enamel coating. Food stays hot for a very long time. Glass lid with metal rim and steam vent. Cooking in it is pure pleasure. Nothing escapes, retains its taste and texture.
Non-stick: Teflon coated
Teflon is a type of non-stick coating widely used in the manufacture of cookware. Such pans have several advantages:
- high heat resistance and protection against sticking — allow you to cook without the use of fats;
- fast heating;
- light weight;
- no need for special care, easy to clean.
The disadvantages of pots with Teflon coating are:
- high cost. A quality Teflon pan is more expensive than a cast iron one;
- instability of the polymer to mechanical stress. It is easy to damage it with a knife or a metal spatula;
- toxicity at high temperatures. Cookware with a Teflon coating must not be used for baking in the oven, as when heated above 260 ° C, the coating releases harmful substances.
When using Teflon-coated pans, plastic or wooden utensils must be used.
Table: rating of pots with Teflon coating with a rating of 5/5 according to the Yandex.Market service
|Pan Flonal Palladium Ecolux PE5223 6 l||Teflon coated aluminum pot with glass lid. Bottom thickness 4 mm. Dishwasher approved.||1529 p.|
|Pan Ecoramic 26 cm (pink) with titanium non-stick coating with lid||Volume is 6 l. It is made on unique technology of production of a covering. Does not harm health. Safe for the environment.||3000 r.|
|Cast saucepan 28cm (5L) with lid Risoli LE PIGNATTE 00097PIN/28P||Lightweight, easy care. With high performance. Teflon coated.||10450 r.|
DuPont multicooker bowl with Teflon non-stick coating ADVANTAGES: while new, it does an excellent job of its functions, including forming an appetizing crust on dishes during frying, while maintaining the juiciness of the product DISCLOSURES: short-lived, the coating deteriorates quickly, can be deformed for an unknown reason
Shine stainless steel
Pots made of stainless or medical steel are very common, having, perhaps, only one significant drawback: high cost.
But they have a lot of advantages:
- have high strength and are completely safe for health;
- applicable to any cooking surface;
- they heat up evenly and provide for long-term storage of cooked food in them;
- do not require special care;
- have a wide range and fit any kitchen design.
Stainless steel pots can store cooked food
Table: rating of stainless steel pots with a rating of 5/5 according to the Yandex.Market service
|Saucepan MAYER & BOCH 80043 1 l||Stainless steel saucepan with glass lid and layered bottom. Assumes application on induction panels. Dishwasher acceptable|
|Saucepan MAYER & BOCH 26688 6.8 l||Stainless steel. Glass lid included. Layered bottom. Suitable for induction cookers. Can be washed in the dishwasher.||1015 r.|
|Saucepan Amet 1c2512 30 l||Material: stainless steel. Steel cover. Bottom thickness 2 mm. Bottom diameter 37 cm. Dishwasher safe.||4125 r.|
Kaiserhoff stainless steel pan ADVANTAGES: After several years of constant use, it looks like new. DISADVANTAGES: The matte part of the lid glass requires especially thorough washing, it is rough and grease sticks.
grace of glass
Refractory glass pans look stylish. In addition to the elegant appearance, glass has other advantages:
- environmental friendliness. Long-term storage of cooked food in it is allowed;
- versatility. Any cooking method is suitable for this pan, up to baking in the oven and using it in the microwave.
If we talk about the minuses, then the glass is unstable to mechanical stress: it is very easy to break it, and it also does not tolerate sudden changes in temperature. The use of such a pan is not suitable for all cooking surfaces.
Glass pans are brittle
Table: rating of glass pans with a rating of 5/5 according to the Yandex.Market service
|Saucepan Loraine 26268 1.5 liters, with glass lid||The shape of the pan is round with two handles on the edges. Heat-resistant glassware will be an excellent choice for all lovers of dishes cooked in the oven and microwave. Suitable for washing in a dishwasher.||399 r.|
|Medium glass saucepan with lid 24*21*7 cm 1.5 l Studio BergHoff 1100020||Versatile multipurpose borosilicate glass pan.||1230 r.|
|Saucepan BergHOFF “Studio” with lid, 1.3 l||Material: glass, with lid, with handles.||2600 r.|
Pyrex Essentials glass saucepan ADVANTAGES: high-quality dishes, at a normal price, can be stewed, baked, baked DISADVANTAGES: heavy due to thick walls, you need to know the special operating rules A young or experienced housewife will need such dishes.
The simplicity of refractory ceramics
Along with glass pans made of refractory ceramics are valued: they are natural and environmentally friendly. The advantages of ceramic pots are similar to those of glass:
- safe for health and suitable for storing prepared food in them;
- keep warm well;
- allow baking in the oven;
- exclude burning of food;
- unpretentious in care.
The disadvantages include instability to mechanical damage and sudden changes in temperature. Wear of the coating-glaze can lead to burning of food.
Food does not burn in ceramic pots
Table: rating of ceramic pots with a rating of 5/5 according to the Yandex.Market service
|Saucepan Lomonosov Ceramics Spark 2 l with ceramic lid||Refractory ceramics. Bottom diameter 15 cm. Dishwasher safe. Can be used in the oven.||944 r.|
|Saucepan Hans & Gretchen BAUM ORANGE 2,1l (22cm)||Made from environmentally friendly heat-resistant ceramics. The ceramic pot lid is equipped with a steam outlet. The saucepan heats the food evenly, keeping it warm for a long time.||1759 p.|
|Saucepan Appolia Terre&Flamme 3.1 l||Material: refractory ceramics. Ceramic lid. Can be washed in the dishwasher. Can be used in the oven.||8552 r.|
Sacher heat-resistant ceramic pot ADVANTAGES: Delicious homemade food is always available. WEAKNESSES: Price. The pans are quite heavy, I don’t know if that’s a plus or a minus. There is a hole in the lid of the pan for steam to escape and you can not be afraid that the water will “run away” from it. All dishes are tasty and fragrant, and besides, vitamins and amino acids are preserved in such dishes. I’m very satisfied despite the price.
Requirements for handles
Handles must be well fixed on the body — this is important, since unreliable fastenings can lead not only to loss of dinner, but also to burns. In order not to burn your hands, give preference to options with rubberized holders. Plastic tips are less practical, as they can melt if you choose the wrong burner or place the cookware off-center.
Take a closer look at all-metal handles made from different types of metal. They don’t get hot around the edges. These are easier to keep clean than inserts. Plus — if necessary, you can put in the oven.
To determine the convenience, do not hesitate to pick up the pot you like in the store and pick it up. The size of the palms and the length of the fingers are different for everyone, so there are no universal tips here.
What are pot handles? There are few options. The main list looks like this:
- Cast iron. Differ in durability. Not afraid of mechanical damage. Moisture adversely affects properties.
- Bakelite. The main composition is heat-resistant plastic. Heats up in minutes. The grip is comfortable. They don’t slip. The maximum allowable temperature is 150 degrees. Experts advise to clean them away from the heating zone. This can lead to their deformation.
- Ceramics. They are afraid of significant temperature changes. They do not need careful care. Compatible with microwave and ovens.
- Metal. The larger the handles, the less they heat up. Show resistance to high temperatures. It is not recommended to put in the oven.
Other equally important features
All of the above manufacturing materials are good in their own way and each has its drawbacks, but this is not the only important detail to consider when choosing a pan. It is necessary to provide for all sorts of difficulties and inconveniences that may arise during the operation of the desired new thing.
We take into account the hob
Cooking surfaces are divided into gas and electric. The latter, in turn, differ in materials of manufacture and excellent heating elements. Therefore, it is very important to consider on which hob the pan will be operated.
A gas hob involves the use of any kind of pots, with the exception of glass: glassware cannot be placed on an open fire. The solution in such a situation may be the purchase of a special divider. Caution should also be used on the gas surface of ceramic dishes. In order to avoid damage to such a pan due to a sharp temperature change and to evenly distribute heat, it is necessary to start cooking on a small fire.
On a gas stove, you can use any type of pan, except for glass
In the presence of an electric hob, it is necessary to take into account the material of manufacture of the surface coating and the peculiarity of the operation of the heating element:
- enamel and aluminum coatings of the stainless steel hob with metal pancake heaters provide for the use of any type of pots with the only limitation: glass and ceramic dishes cannot be placed on hot burners due to intolerance to temperature changes;
- glass-ceramic surfaces with rapid, halogen and Hi-Lite burners have increased fragility and do not allow the use of any pots with a rough surface. The ideal solution in this case would be eco-friendly dishes made of glass and ceramics, as well as Teflon, stainless steel and all types of enamel pots.
The principle of operation of induction hobs is fundamentally different from the above types of panels and requires the cookware to have special ferromagnetic properties. Pots made of stainless steel and cast iron alloys are best suited. There are also copper, ceramic, aluminum and enameled dishes, which are added with special metals that give the pans the necessary properties. Such utensils are marked with a special sign in the form of a spiral, which indicates its suitability for use on induction hobs.
Stainless steel pot suitable for all types of electric hobs
The shape and features of the bottom
The shape of the pan has practical value. The experience of many generations has shown that round and cylindrical shapes are most suitable for cooking all kinds of dishes:
- easier to mix the dish when cooking;
- heat is distributed more evenly;
- a round pan is easier to clean.
But there are also oval and even square pans, depending on the intended purpose and the design idea of the manufacturer. So, square-shaped dishes are compact in terms of placement on the shelves of the refrigerator or storage in the kitchen cabinet. And the oval roasting pans are ideal for whole poultry.
Photo gallery: variety of pan shapes
The traditional cylindrical shape is suitable for cooking almost any dish.
Rectangular pot with exquisite design
A square-shaped pan is suitable for a high-tech kitchen
An oval-shaped brazier is suitable for cooking poultry
When choosing a pan, it is important to consider the features of its bottom. It is not enough to study it for irregularities: the pan must be firmly located on the surface of the hob, in no case should it slip or stagger. The thickness of the bottom should also be taken into account. The thick bottom gives the pan a number of advantages:
- food cooks faster due to uniform heating and does not burn;
- heat is retained for a long time, which helps to bring the dish to readiness after removing the pan from the burner;
- a heavy-bottomed pot allows cooking without adding fat and, if necessary, without water.
It should be noted that the volume of the pan will depend on its intended purpose. When it comes to home cooking, it’s very handy to have several pots of different sizes on hand:
- large pots with a volume of 5 liters and more are convenient for preparing various pickles, for cooking compotes and jelly, as well as for preparing dough products that require a large ratio of water;
- a 3 liter saucepan is considered universal. It is convenient to cook soups, meat, side dishes, compotes in it;
- a medium saucepan with a volume of 1 l to 3 l is perfect for preparing small portions. It will be convenient for cooking vegetables, side dishes, eggs, sausages;
- the smallest saucepan with a volume of up to 1 liter is suitable for making sauce, porridge for a baby for 1–2 servings or for boiling milk.
But, of course, everything is very individual. In many ways, the volume of the pan will depend on the number of family members and on the method of preparing certain dishes.
Lid design, handles
To avoid injury, special attention should be paid to the design features of the handles and cover. Preference should be given to a pan, the handles of which will not be welded, but securely and tightly attached to the body with rivets, which will eliminate the possibility of accidental tearing.
It is important that there are at least 2 rivets on the side of each handle.
Photo gallery: fastening handles
Rivet fastening of handles is considered the most reliable
Threaded handles can be considered as an alternative to rivets
Welded handles are not the most reliable solution
Holders on pot handles and lids must be with heat-resistant inserts. If it is intended to use the pan in the oven, then metal handles made of different types of metal will be an excellent solution: they also will not heat up and will not melt under the influence of high temperatures. There are also pans with a removable handle.
In addition to the heat-resistant insert on the handle, a prerequisite for choosing a lid is its tight fit to the pan. The presence of a small hole in the lid will protect the liquid from boiling over. The transparent glass lid makes it easy to monitor the cooking process in the pot. A high lid is more practical when boiling.
The protective opening on the lid will prevent the liquid from boiling over.
Decorative elements, in terms of durability and washability
The decorative elements on the pan do not carry any semantic load and are of no practical value, but, undoubtedly, they add sophistication and simplify the task of choosing a pan based on the design solution of the kitchen. So, figured carving on the body or voluminous carved handles will add charm, the dishes will look festive and elegant. But this will complicate the care of the pan, additional manual cleaning will be required, since simple washing will not be enough.
From this point of view, patterns on enamel pans are an ideal decoration. After applying the decorative element, the pan is subjected to additional firing, which makes the decoration resistant to mechanical damage and washing.
Photo gallery: decorative elements on pots
The shaped bottom of the enameled pot requires thorough cleaning after each use.
Curly pot handles and lids add sophistication to the kitchen interior
Figured carving on the body of a ceramic pot can affect the durability of the coating
Printed enamel saucepan is easy to clean
Focus on the brand
Counterfeits have flooded the modern world. And, of course, this phenomenon has not bypassed the production of dishes. BUT after all, dishes, in particular pots, are in closest contact with the products that a person eats. Who knows what price this contact can cost a person if the utensils are improperly made or made of low-quality materials. And who can give a guarantee of quality and compliance with standards, as time-tested manufacturers that have not proven themselves over time:
- Kukrama concern is the best domestic manufacturer of aluminum pans with more than 65 years of production experience;
- Belgian manufacturer BergHOFF and German Gipfel have been making safe and reliable cast iron pots for over 20 years;
- the Czech brand Tescoma, the British TalleR, and the legendary German brand Röndell create the best stainless steel pans in the world recommended by the national chefs guild;
- the German brand Bekker and, oddly enough, the Chinese brand Regent are profiled on pots for induction cookers;
- the German manufacturer Mayer & Boch is a leader in the creation of the best enamel pots with an exquisite design;
- South Korean brand Frybest is a well-known manufacturer of refractory ceramic pots;
- the famous French brand Tefal is the undisputed leader in the manufacture of Teflon-coated pots.
The above brands are perhaps the most famous, but certainly not the only ones. The right to choose and a huge range of manufacturers will allow each consumer to purchase a quality pan based on material capabilities and taste preferences.
Video: test purchase of pans from different manufacturers
Regardless of which manufacturer is preferable, when choosing a pan, you must carefully examine it for mechanical damage. It is strictly forbidden to use dishes with chips and cracks for their intended purpose. It should also be noted that the life of the pan directly depends on the number of layers of protective coating applied to its surface. It is preferable to stop the choice on the dishes, the walls and bottom of which will be thicker.
Overview of additional functions
Criteria for choosing dishes are different for everyone. Some are attracted by the appearance, others pay attention to the material of manufacture, the third are more interested in displacement, the fourth give extended functionality. It is difficult to say which company is better products. It all depends on the personal preferences of the user. However, each manufacturer tries to please its admirers and equip the produced pots with additional options, which include:
- Steam hole on the lid.
- Liter scale. A rather convenient function for determining the volume provided by the recipe.
- Drain hole. Location — top of the pan. Helps to drain liquid easily. There are models with a special mesh for filtering.
- Removable handles. Convenient option. Allows you to place the container in the oven. It is convenient to store and transport products.
- Funnel for spices. A separate part that is placed on the handle of the pan. You can pour oil, vinegar, wine there. Helps distribute seasonings evenly throughout the dish.
- Induction compatible option. Models can be heated on induction cookers.
- Possibility to use a dishwasher. Depends on the size and material of manufacture.
- Possibility to put in the oven. The material of manufacture must be heat-resistant, the handles must be metal. There should be no non-stick coating.
- Welded bottom. Pressing a metal plate between two stainless steel layers. At the same time, air gaps do not appear at the bottom of the pan.
- Multilayer base. In most cases, the bottom consists of three layers. The inner layer is made of materials with high thermal conductivity. The outer layers match the material used to make the cookware. The design does not deform, endures temperature fluctuations, allows products to warm up evenly. Food cools down slowly.
- The presence of a temperature sensor on the lid. A special indicator that shows the temperature inside the container. Reviews about the models are only positive. The price is higher than the usual counterparts. Do not wash in the dishwasher and put in the oven.
- capsule base. Three-layer element: stainless steel — aluminum — stainless steel. Products are produced, where the lower layer is copper.
Stainless steel products
Many housewives prefer to cook in such pans. They can create culinary masterpieces in the form of first courses, side dishes, vegetable stews, compotes. Suitable for cooking pasta and dumplings. Stainless steel belongs to the category of inert materials. Does not react with alkalis and acids, does not absorb aromas and fats. It is not afraid of corrosion, endures temperature extremes. Differs in a practicality and small weight.
The main advantages of stainless steel cookware include:
- light weight;
- heating rate;
- anti-corrosion characteristics;
- resistance to acids and alkalis;
- huge assortment.
The best manufacturers have launched the production of models that can be used on any stove, including induction.
The products are not without drawbacks and you need to know about them:
- low thermal conductivity;
- uneven heating;
- fast cooling of products;
- involves the use of fat to fry ingredients.
How to choose the best stainless steel pot
Where to buy products is not a difficult question. Any specialized market will offer a huge range of products to choose from. However, the choice must be approached with all seriousness. Experts recommend paying attention to such nuances:
- Pens. One of the main structural elements. They can be wooden and metal, removable and conventional. They perform the main function — they help to put the container on the stove and remove it from there.
- Density of walls and bottom. The thickness of the case is directly related to the uniformity of its heating. It is advisable to give preference to models consisting of several layers. The data are indicated in the technical coupon, which is issued to the buyer at the time of purchase of the goods.
- The presence of a mark. Indicates the material of manufacture of products. The mark may be placed on dishes or in accompanying documents.
- Lid. Mandatory detail. In the manufacture of heat-resistant glass or steel. Protective coated holder. Should fit snugly into the container.
- Design. It has no effect on the functionality, but should be pleasing to the eye. Especially if the dishes are often used. It is imperative to check the integrity of the product. There should be no chips, scratches or other damage.
Advantages and disadvantages of buying pans in a set
The sets include several types of pots made of the same material. On the one hand, it’s beautiful — all the dishes are in the same style, but do not forget that for different culinary tasks you may need pans made of different materials. For this reason, you should not buy large kits without considering the purpose of each model included in it.
The advantage of sets is the convenience of storage. Often, manufacturers think over the shape and size so that one product fits into another according to the principle of nesting dolls. As a result, the set takes up less space in the closet.
There are never many pots, but there is not enough space to store them! Keep this in mind both when you are tempted by a novelty, and when you regret throwing away an obsolete one. If there is nothing superfluous, learn how to store as compactly as possible using our tips.
Useful little things
To invest in kitchen work and draw attention to their product, manufacturers supplement their products with various “chips”. Most useful:
- Measuring scale on the inner wall — makes it easier to follow proportions and follow recipes.
- Drain spout — protects against spillage and burns of hands, serves as a recess for a ladle, slotted spoon or a long spoon. To prevent excess steam from evaporating or vice versa, the spout must be closed and opened, if necessary, by moving the lid.
- Perforation in the drain area — such holes are convenient when cooking vegetables, dumplings, pasta, compotes. Anything that requires draining fluid.
- Handles with a lid holder — solve the problem of where to put the lid when you need to open the pan.
- Silicone potholders made for handles. Nozzles can be removed and put on as needed. They don’t fall off.
Stainless steel pots are fairly easy to clean. We advise you to pay attention to a few points in order to extend their life.
- Wash dishes with liquid detergent and a soft sponge. The use of abrasives and cleaning powders can scratch the finish and ruin the look of the cookware.
- Overheating the pan can cause iridescent streaks or golden spots, which are easily washed off with a special tool.
- Salt should be put in hot water. Adding salt to cold water can lead to blackheads that are almost impossible to remove.
- You can wash the burnt by pouring hot water and detergent and leaving it for a while.
- Products with chlorine and ammonia should not be used.
- Cooked food can be left in high quality stainless steel pots. See the manufacturer’s instructions for this information.
- Advantages of ceramic dishes
It has proven to be safe for centuries, since people have been cooking food in clay pots since ancient times. Ceramics is not afraid of high temperatures, becoming only stronger from them; looks very presentable, and the dishes cooked in it have a rich taste.
- Cons of ceramic dishes
Real ceramics have only two of them — a high price and the ability to quickly absorb fat, which can be difficult to wash off.
Modern ceramic ware can be dangerous if it is brightly colored. Glazes and paints contain salts of zinc, lead, cobalt and other metals. These substances can be harmful to health, but only if the painting and glaze are severely cracked (then the salt concentration increases).
- Degree of security: for natural ceramics — high