Kitchen Appliance Advice

Skillet and Frying Pan Buying Advice

Skillets were originally deep, much like the sauce pans we use today, but the term is used interchangeably with "frying pan." A frying pan is a shallow, long-handled pan used for frying food. These pans are not about slow cooking or braising. Often they do not have lids because they do not have the need to seal in juices as a pan for slow cooking must do. The sides of these pans flare out while the height remains shallow. A frying pan should not be too heavy to lift or move around easily. It should have a long handle that stays cool so that you feel safe when cooking. The frying pan is the one to turn to when you want to sear and brown something fast and then bring the heat down quickly.

Skillet and Frying Pan
Nowadays, people like to mingle the two and the frying pans are skillets that have moderately high, slightly flared sides. They are useful for all kinds of pan-frying, as opposed to deep-fat frying. These pans are what you need to use when you want to cook foods like pork chops, potato pancakes, or soft-shell crabs, as well as peppers and onions. You may also use a frying pan to saut? which involves rapid frying in a small amount of fat followed by the addition of other ingredients to the pan, but that technique is better left to a true saut?pan with high straight sides. A 7-8 inch skillet is a highly functional pan for cooking an omelet or scrambled egg, sautéing garlic or your favorite vegetables. A 10-12 inch skillet can be used for frying greater volumes of the same items, and for stir-frying if the pan is made from heavy material that conducts heat well so there are no hot spots.

A copper pan that is lined with tin or stainless steel is the first choice for delicate items that needs precise timing. Copper is the quickest responsive metal; it picks up heat immediately but it will also lose heat as soon as the pan is removed from the burner. For everyday cooking, whether sautéed mushrooms, hamburgers or chicken cutlets, pans made from stainless steel-wrapped aluminum and anodized aluminum are excellent choices. Some foods require steady, even heat to brown. An old-fashioned cast iron skillet that doesn’t cool down when you take it off the burner would be a good choice for hash browned potatoes, bacon or a grilled cheese sandwich.

Although it is better to use a potholder when you are cooking, it is also important that the frying pan handle stay as cool as possible. You can look for metal handles that are hollowed in some way or that are made of a different metal than the pan itself. Phenol handles stay cool, even after prolonged frying, but you can't use the pan under the broiler. Wooden handles stay the coolest, but are not oven-proof and dishwasher-safe. Also it got rotten fast, you will not expect a pan without the handle for its service life. If you purchase any non-stick aluminum pans you should make certain they are anodized. Inexpensive non-stick pans will not wear well nor will they hold up to high heat.

Buying Tips:
Skillet and frying pans are very useful tools in the kitchen. People use it everyday to prepare food. You may need to decide how large the pay you want to buy according to the food amount you will prepare. If you like to toss food when you cook, you need to get a deep skillet for you. Nonstick interior clad is good for easy cleaning. Hard-anodized aluminum exterior is very good for even heating and long lasting performance. Look for those pans with the stay-cool, arched handle that is always riveted to the skillet to provide comfort while cooking. Other thing you need to know is that pans with stainless steel exteriors resisted scratches and dents better than either black enamel or anodized aluminum pans. A skillet should have a comfortable weight, not too heavy and not too light.

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