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Cookware 17

Help -- What kind of saute pan do I want?

harrism | Jan 9, 2014 08:43 PM

Help me think about replacing my current sauté pan, or at least decide what to long for. I currently have a 12” SS on aluminum core that someone made for Pampered Chef (long story). The single biggest thing I don’t like about it is that at some point I warped it; I assume by allowing it to overheat. Once we moved into a new place with the accursed glass top electric that warp became unmanageable and so after months of fighting with it I applied pretty high heat again and then applied a mallet to it until it was close enough to flat that I could use it without cursing. It is useable, so this is a medium term search rather than immediate purchase requirement. Here are, in no particular order, my thoughts on the subject.

SIZE: I know that 12” will be more susceptible to warping than smaller sizes, but I didn’t think I was really into the red zone for that yet. Is this just going to happen sometimes at that size?

HEAT: Did I probably just apply more heat than I am supposed to, especially before dropping in a cold piece of meat? I thought that sautéing involved pretty high heat (correct me if I’m wrong, I’m here to learn).

QUALITY: Is the problem that my pan isn’t well enough made? Would something like AllClad solve that problem?

MATERIAL: Am I better off with copper? Can copper take the heat without warping? Is this the kind of case where I’m better off with something like my mother’s SS pan with an aluminum disc? Cast Aluminum lined with SS?
FOOD: because I know it will be asked. Honestly, this is my most frequently used pan. I use it for sautéing veg, but also for all those built up meals where everything eventually ends up in one pan (this one), and I also use it for most things where I want to be able to move from stove top to oven.

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