Information about Frying Pans

A good quality frying pan is an investment it shouldn’t warp or buckle and if you look after it, it should last for years and years

Sizes of frying pans are typically between 20-30cms or if metric isn’t your thing 8-12 inches. A frying pan has shallow flared sides and a long handle to keep the cooks hands safely away from the flame; they are commonly used for searing, browning and frying foods. A pan that is similar but has straight sides and a lid (frying pans don’t have lids) is called a sauté pan.

Non-stick is one choice for your frying pan, which has the advantage in the fact its non-stick, ready to use and your food won’t stick but has the disadvantage of you having to look after the non stick coating. However it is only fair to note that non stick coatings have really improved in recent years and you can now get non stick coatings that are extremely hard wearing.

One way to look at it is if the non-stick frying pan you are considering is on the cheaper side of the market then it will almost certainly have an inferior non stick coating which means you should avoid very high temperatures, metal utensils, abrasive pan scourers and sharp objects because they can all damage your coating causing it to bubble and peel into your food so to keep your non-stick finish these things really should be avoided. Professional kitchens tend not to use non stick pans as they need too much looking after and can’t take the constant battering that say a cast iron pan can. Some people believe that you can obtain a natural non-stick finish to an ordinary frying pan that isn’t treated with a non-stick coating by not washing the pan in between uses and just giving it a quick wipe out with say kitchen paper. Personally I think that’s rather unhygienic myself and with a good wash and thorough dry after each use pans will form a non stick coating over time anyway.

Frying pans can come on various materials but the most common and simplest to look after are made from either stainless steel or aluminium as they need very little maintenance and are hard wearing. An increasing popular choice is to opt for hard anodised pans which are made from Aluminium which is treated to change its molecular structure by using a process that is electro-chemical, this results in a very hard wearing material that is proving to be popular with some people.

A couple of other materials which are popular are cast iron and cooper but they require more care and attention to keep in good condition, they include cast iron which keeps its high temperature for longer and is a hard wearing material but it needs to be seasoned before use and periodically during its lifetime.

Copper is an excellent conductor of heat and is popular because it’s very heat controllable it’s however very expensive and will need to be polished to remove the tarnish that will form.

Some celebrity chefs have now joined forces with companies to give their name to products that they endorse for example Jamie Oliver with Tefal, Marco Pierre white with Russell Hobbs and James Martin with Lamina, other popular brands include Le Creuset, Prestige and Circulon but there are many brands out on the market and personal choice will always be a common reason for a certain brand or material to be chosen.

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