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Conundrums's Profile

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What kind of prep table / island should I get?

Yeah, I don't need it large. I looked at soapstone slabs, to sit on top of a cheap cart/island. The problem is they are uneven. The less expensive ones, anyway. SS has low prices, but as you say, then I need a nice thicker board to sit on top. Then it's back in the price range of wood tops.

Feb 29, 2012
Conundrums in Cookware

What kind of prep table / island should I get?

For wood boards or tabletops, it seems if you keep the top well oiled, then clean-up is easy. I don't understand which woods are good for directly cutting on. I guess any real hardwoods. I see these thin wood tops, and I don't know if you can oil them up and use them. They are probably real oak or maple, just thin. The thick hardwood tops get expensive. The professional type especially.

Feb 29, 2012
Conundrums in Cookware

What kind of prep table / island should I get?

Thanks. I'm shocked about plastic for cutting raw meat.

Feb 29, 2012
Conundrums in Cookware

What kind of prep table / island should I get?

Thanks, very informative.

Feb 28, 2012
Conundrums in Cookware

Cleaning egg film from cast iron?

Yes oil and salt is good.

Feb 28, 2012
Conundrums in Cookware

What kind of prep table / island should I get?

I downsized, and there is not enough counter space.

I am leaning toward a stainless steel prep table instead of a normal wood top. Price matters so I don't want granite. Is there some kind of table that's more natural but not expensive? I am imagining some kind of stone slab could be healthy and not taint food. I like to avoid stainless touching my food. I can detect the metallic tastes. For example could I just buy some natural counter slab, and put it on top of a normal kitchen table, and raise them up a couple feet?

Are there any other negatives to a SS prep table? They seem more hygenic and easier to clean. Great. Also seems more lasting than wood top ones. Wood can get small slice marks destroying the protective layer, right? I would not cut right on the surface, but I mean from accidental cuts.

I am unsure if I should get a cart. It looks like most prep tables have one shelf and no drawers or cabinets. Also some are not on wheels. The cart is usually small though.

I don't know what height I should aim for. I am shorter than an average person. I should see where my arms naturally hang when I am standing with elbows at 90 degrees? They are probably all about the same height.

Any other advice on what to look for or avoid? There was a great used one I should have bought, but I hesitated too long about the SS top. Thanks for your help.

Feb 27, 2012
Conundrums in Cookware

Crockpot flaking, return it?

Good points. Thanks.

Feb 20, 2012
Conundrums in Cookware

Crockpot flaking, return it?

Yeah, it's silver dots where there should be black finish. Surprised me. They are only on the bottom, lots of them but not evenly distributed. I tried a scrub sponge (not metallic) and they are the same. I did not add anything silver colored.

Feb 20, 2012
Conundrums in Cookware

Crockpot flaking, return it?

My crock has lots of little silver dots on the bottom. It seems that the normal dark color wore down in these parts. Does this mean it's unsafe?

It's not very old. I am surprised to see such wear already. I wonder if some types of foods made it wear away faster. I'm thinking about returning it because if it's this worn already, it could be bad soon. Even before I saw these specks on the bottom, I was wondering about the rubber and metal from the lid. I am paranoid about any metals or chemicals touching my food. The brand is Hamilton Beach, by the way.

I don't know if I need a crockpot anyway. I don't need to transport food. I could use the money toward larger piece of enameled cast iron cookware, to put on my induction cooktop, to serve a similar purpose. I don't think my cooktop can't be put on a timer to turn on, but I don't really need that either. A timer can shut it off. I liked how the crockpot can sense when the meat hits the desired temperature. I hope I could find a thermometer to beep when meat is ready. My induction cooktop may not go low enough for good slower cooking. The minimum is 140 degrees or 500W.

I would appreciate any insight.

Feb 20, 2012
Conundrums in Cookware

Lodge cast iron wok and induction cooktop

Ok, good to know. I know it also depends on wok shape, size of bowl, size of base, and weight. At the 320 degree setting, it took about 50 seconds to heat up (enough for water to sizzle).

Feb 16, 2012
Conundrums in Cookware

Lodge cast iron wok and induction cooktop

Thanks. At my novice level, I see no need to lift the pans. From what I read, cast iron has the least problems or enameled cast iron. I want only those types, so I don't have noise problems or temperature being uneven. Also to save money on the cookware, and so I don't need to purchase a disk.

Feb 16, 2012
Conundrums in Cookware

Lodge cast iron wok and induction cooktop

I was surprised how the oil kept "disappearing". I hope I don't need to use this much oil in the future. I used safflower oil. Some food was sticking but I am sure it will improve. The wok is preowned but I think it needs more use to get seasoned better. Now it's only ok.

Feb 16, 2012
Conundrums in Cookware

Lodge cast iron wok and induction cooktop

I cooked the meal at 320-392 degrees. The lower temp did not seem enough, or maybe it was not enough oil in the wok. Considering it was my first time with induction and cast iron, and that I'm bad in the kitchen, it was a success. I have had little good wok experience. A few parts were undercooked and a few parts overcooked. Next time I will go up one temp setting. After the next setting, is the highest, at 464 degrees. Each setting jumps up by about 36 degrees. Maybe I will try the 464 degrees again if the next level works, however, once it gives the overheat error, it may not let me go to a lower temp without waiting.

Feb 16, 2012
Conundrums in Cookware

Lodge cast iron wok and induction cooktop

I am a wreck in the kitchen, but I'm trying to learn to use cast iron cookware and an induction cooktop. I read all about cast iron cleaning and do's and don'ts. My Lodge wok is seasoned well enough to try it.

I already tested the cooktop by putting it on the highest temp. I believe the highest is 454 degrees. It overheats in about 3 minutes if I do this, if the wok is sitting there with oil in it. I tried it 3 separate times to see if it would overheat and give an error.

It is a like new cooktop that someone else returned, so it may be a defective one, and I would exchange it for another. However, I think it's overheating because of the shape of the wok, and it being heavy cast iron. Does anyone know? If I can't use this wok on this cooktop, I may have to use my electric stove.

I have the inexpensive Duxtop 8300ST. It has mostly good reviews and some reviewers said they often made stir-fry on it (and the previous Duxtop model).

I'm still hoping to use the wok today to cook my veggies and meat while they are fresh. I read that you don't need the highest heat. As little as 300 degrees will sear? So I hope it won't overheat and that I can manage to cook.

My biggest concern besides overheating is: Will it be obvious to me when the meat and veggies are cooked enough? I would hate to have them uncooked in the middle.

I have a silicone splatter screen but I don't like how it blocks your view (unlike stainless). I try and avoid stainless when I can. I have a good long handled turner.

Feb 16, 2012
Conundrums in Cookware