Let me preface by thanking you profusely for reading this long winded post....
OK, i have read the plethora of posts regarding SS, CS, CI, NonStick, ECI, etc. I feel like I'm still in the same boat, except to say that I definitely don't want any of the chemical nonstick stuff....and I'm possibly a bit turned off by the heavier CI stuff (with the exception of allowing one piece: a 10 or 12 inch skillet for searing meat if there's no better/lighter alternative).
Since I agree that there's no one type of pot/pan that's good for everything, let me quickly explain what I usually cook:
1. Steaks, chicken, pork chops on the stove top...on occasion I would try to do a pan sauce with some of these but considering i was using non stick, no wonder it tasted like crap (i realize that now after reading thru this site). If I decided to finish something off in the oven, I usually transferred it to a glass pyrex
2. Eggs...with bacon once in a blue moon
3. Pancakes on a center griddle rack that needs to be tossed (from GE).
4. Frozen skillet side dishes (trader joe's asparagus risotto and veggie fried rice, etc)
5. Spaghetti sauce/Pasta
6. Ribs (in a slow cooker or the oven)
7. Stewed meat in the slow cooker (I have decided I either suck at it or the slow cooker isn't the best use for that type of meal)
And most of the above stuff I cook in old teflon type crap or an old set of Anolon anodized non stick that have not been non stick for some time now....which has led me here because I want to replace that junk.
So that is pretty much 90% of what I cook...and I'm looking to take some cooking classes so hopefully that list will expand greatly.
Also to note, my husband has an old 18 piece stainless steel Wolfang Puck Cafe Collection set he got years ago that are in very good shape and I do use the pots more often than the pans because...well, because I don't know how to use the pans without making stuff stick. I realize from reading here that the trick is preheating pan/oil and then being patient with the food before trying to turn things...patience grasshopper, patience.
So, I can use those stainless pots/pans but realize adding other types of pans can be helpful/better options for certain foods.
1. I'm thinking some sort of enameled aluminum (cuz CI is so stinking heavy) pan would be great for browning/deglazing and can also be used for starchy stuff or some of those frozen sides I like?
2. Also, one CI skillet for searing when I'm not deglazing?
3. Something truly non stick for eggs or dishes I dont want to have to add significant oil...or can I use the enameled aluminum pan?
Is there something I should be adding/removing from this list...or considering I already have SS, can I get away with just adding one more type of pan that can do the non stick stuff....seems like enameled aluminum is a good "main-go-to" option?
I really don't want to have to buy a bunch of stuff that will get relatively little use...I don't mind dropping some $ if it's trully worth it but I'm definitely not into the name brand for the sake of the name brand.
There's something to be said about communism....no choices! Lol