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Cleaning burned LeCreuset

When my husband scortched the entire interior (up to 1.5 inches from rim) of my le creuset baking beans, I almost grabbed it from him to use it as a murder weapon. He had somehow dulled the shine of the enamel. I scrubbed and scrubbed with dishwashing liquid... heated it up, tried wooden spoon... and gave up, thinking the enamel had actually degraded somehow and would never shine again.

Fast forward 6 months, and i hadn't used the pot again because it was too painful to see it in that state. Husband gets it out and uses it to make onion relish (no really its great, home-made - artifical-preservative free!). Major ingredient: vinegar. Cooking time: forever. Result: shiniest, happiest Le Creuset EVER !!! I could NOT believe my eyes. Lesson: boil a ton of vinegar in there for a few hours. (Bonus: it pretty much fumigates the entire house....open some windows! )

Sep 27, 2012
Rivard in Cookware

What cookbooks have you bought recently, or are you lusting after? Early Fall edition [old]

I can't wait to start cooking from Jerusalem - long anticipated. Luckily my local library has it,so it will be in my hands very very soon -- for free :) Could be a way to try out the others on your list without committing... I also feel like I have to take advantage of the cookbook while I have it checked out, so I do get around to trying recipes if I've borrowed the book from the library

http://www.worldcat.org/oclc/775415538

Sep 18, 2012
Rivard in Home Cooking

What basic pots & pans do we need in a starter set? (sizes & shapes)

good point, risotto! i forgot that I love making risotto --- fall is just starting to close in here so thanks for reminding me that needs to go back onto the menu rotation :) Once i have a pan i can use for it. It sounds like you have every size that's in the set I'm considering, and although I'm attracted to buying a set because it works out cheaper, rather than the matchy-ness, you've actually encouraged me to go ahead with it. Thanks for the tip about the pasta-strainer insert -- I'm going to ask about that in-store!

Sep 16, 2012
Rivard in Cookware

What basic pots & pans do we need in a starter set? (sizes & shapes)

Ha, its been years since i've had a boca burger :) we tend to stir-fry in a fry pan but true, a higher rim and larger capacity would be great now and then (3 qt saute pan). thanks!

Sep 16, 2012
Rivard in Cookware

What basic pots & pans do we need in a starter set? (sizes & shapes)

ellabee thanks for your thoughtful reply! I was aiming at a set because there is a huge price break.. $ isn't the be-all of this purchase, but it's always going to be a bit of a consideration. that said, I'm not much of a matchy-matchy person and I like the idea of taking a look at some other brands. I admit I was orienting to Allclad b/c at this point I at least understand what their different lines are --- your explanation on the different flavors of Mauviel is really useful! I will definitely buy in-store, and will try lifting/manipulating before i pull the trigger on anything. I'm kinda weak-wristed and don't want to push it, weight-wise.
thanks for the steer --- i think yours is one I'll take with me to the store!

Sep 16, 2012
Rivard in Cookware

What basic pots & pans do we need in a starter set? (sizes & shapes)

thanks Sunshine, this was really helpful. I guess we'll be adding larger ones over time as needs change -- we're in such a tiny kitchen right now, I think I need to make some strategic choices (can't let myself get talked into a ten piece set!). I think I'm gonna need an extra little saucepan, though, for sure..

Sep 16, 2012
Rivard in Cookware

What basic pots & pans do we need in a starter set? (sizes & shapes)

thanks Chemicalkinetics --- and may I say, I found your contributions to the "D5 vs Copper Core" thread some time ago and am in awe (and am very appreciative of) your cookware geekery. Thank you!

Sep 16, 2012
Rivard in Cookware

What basic pots & pans do we need in a starter set? (sizes & shapes)

Yep i had a hunch that 10" would be kind of small for our one and only fry pan. Thanks for the advice re: the dutch oven. I haven't ever looked into de buyer minerals -- I'll take a look. I'm not a huge cast-iron fan --- weak wrists make them a pain to handle and clean. (In fact i have that concern about the copper core -- i need to get to a store and fondle them for a while, see how they fit). Thanks!

Sep 16, 2012
Rivard in Cookware

What basic pots & pans do we need in a starter set? (sizes & shapes)

THanks E_M! You've reminded me that families change over time... we are just two of us now, but with any luck our family will grow in the next few years :) And til then we'll definitely need a 2qt saucier or saucepan for oatmeal, rice etc. I have a smallish (2.5 qt?) le creuset, cute but wish I'd gotten a bigger one, for soups, chili etc.

Sep 16, 2012
Rivard in Cookware

What basic pots & pans do we need in a starter set? (sizes & shapes)

We are planning to buy a small (7-piece?) cookware set to replace the worn-out anolon non-stick pots we have, and the awful fry-pan from target that we happily abandoned at our last rental place.

We are a couple who scratch-cook everything we can, in our compact kitchen (gas range), and we are vegetarians. I have figured out I can convert my Amex points to WS giftcards at a decent ratio, so price point doesn't matter so much, but i will be purchasing from WS. I don't want to throw money (or Amex points) away, but splurging for quality that will last forever is absolutely fine.

I'm looking at the 7-piece D5 and Copper-core sets at Williams Sonoma.. These sets include
10 inch fry pan
3 qt saute pan with lid
4 qt saucepan with lid
7 qt stockpot with lid

The WS staff I spoke to said that they allow people to swap out one of the pieces in a set with another if there's a size they won't use (they subtract the retail cost of the swapped-out item and add the retail cost of the swapped-in item, fair enough).

Are these the pots I need, given that i'm going to be starting from absolutely nothing? We definitely need a fry pan (10-or 12-inch?) and the stockpot. And we'll need a saucepan -or two?.. But I'm not sure about sizes. and what do vegetarians do with saute pans? Is there something else I should consider?

TIA ---

Sep 16, 2012
Rivard in Cookware