I currently own a 9-inch (22cm) Le Creuset TNS shallow skillet which I use solely for the purpose of cooking fried/scrambled eggs and omelettes. I'd like to invest in a larger 11-inch (28cm) for more delicate types of fish but am struggling to define exactly what ‘delicate’ means. Most YouTube videos and cooking shows I’ve watched seem to exclusively use non-stick skillets to pan sear fish and never seem to use stainless steel skillets (which is what I have). I was under the impression that this is simply because most of their audience are more likely to own the former rather than the latter but now, I’m not so sure. Delicate fish to me would be fish without it’s insulating skin to protect it from the temperatures required for searing, therefore I could understand why a non-stick pan might be used since lower temperatures are used to brown and its properties allow for more flaky fish to release without crumbling. I can’t however see the benefit of using a non-stick pan for pan-searing fish with skin, as higher temperatures are more likely to degrade its coating over time and once an adequate sear has been achieved it should just release by itself negating the benefits of non-stick. In addition, shouldn’t the skin provide additional structure to the flesh meaning even flaky fish like cod loin shouldn’t crumble? I guess I just don’t feel comfortable using a non-stick pan for high heat searing due to concerns about its overall longevity but if certain fish are better off being cooked in a non-stick pan please mention which, it would be much appreciated. If it helps, I plan to cook cod loin with and without the skin, red snapper, mackerel, sea bass, salmon, trout and dover/lemon sole (sole meunière).
Also will a 11-inch pan be able to accommodate all of these fish fillets as I know some flatfish like the sole can be quite long so would stepping up to 12-inches be better?
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