Frying Pan Guide: How to Choose the Proper Pan
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Frying Pan Guide: How to Choose the Proper Pan

Aug. 28, 2021

Choosing a frying pan can be a painful experience - the plethora of gimmicks, hard sell and low quality pans make purchasing difficult. So what do we say when we recommend one type of pan over another?

Well, it all depends on the use. What you intend to use the pan for should determine the type of pan you purchase, and it's often best to use multiple pans in different situations. To help you make your choice, cast iron cookware supplier SHENGRI  shows you some guidelines to consider.

Cast Iron Cooking

Cast Iron Casserole /Cooking Pot

Need a good grill? Cast iron cookware is great for you because it transfers heat very efficiently, making it perfect for cooking steaks. It does a great job of grilling steaks - just let the pan heat up first, then add the food while it's hot. Cast iron does not react particularly well with acids (such as wine), so if you plan to deglaze, use a stainless steel pan instead. To clean after cooling, scrub with a sponge. Store in a thin layer of cooking oil to prevent rust spots from forming.

Very important for cast iron is that your pan is properly seasoned. There are many ways to season cast iron pans - some say you should only cook bacon in a new pan for the first year, or roast it in fat a few times before using it. To season an old pan, wipe off any rust and crusts from your food and allow it to dry completely. Coat with a thin layer of oil and place in a cold oven. Once cooled, dry with paper towels and the pan is ready for its first use.

Non-stick pans

Non-stick pans are great. They are easy to clean, make cooking a breeze, and are the pans many of us use every day. Non-stick surfaces can be made from a variety of non-reactive substances, which is what makes them so great.

The rule of thumb is: if you're cooking food that's sticky (like eggs) and needs a medium to low heat, then a nonstick pan is the way to go. And, as with many things, buy the best you can afford - the coating will be of better quality and last longer.

In general, nonstick pans react poorly to high heat, so to preserve the life of the coating, use it over medium to low heat and remember to always use plastic, nylon or wood utensils to avoid scratching the surface.

Stainless steel pans

Three-legged Round Handle Pan

Many professional chefs swear by stainless steel pans - they are durable, often lighter than cast iron, and completely non-reactive, which is very useful when deglazing pans with acids. If you're browning meat, tossing, or prefer metal utensils, then stainless steel is your friend.

Good stainless steel pans are heavier because they have a core of highly conductive metal, such as aluminum, sandwiched between the stainless steel. This helps to conduct heat evenly throughout the pan, which helps to cook evenly.

The trick to using stainless steel is to heat it to high, turn it down, then add a drop of oil to the pan and swirl it around. Let it sit for a minute or so to allow the almost smoking point to cool, then add the food and a little more oil if necessary. This should be done every time you use the pan, as cooling and washing will open those pores again.

As you can see, there is a pan for every cooking style. The general rule is: buy the best you can afford and take good care of it. Contact us to get the pan of your choice and enjoy cooking with pleasure!

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