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Round 3: 2015 Cookware deals!

I've been meaning to post for a while, that Accu core looks like it's going down in a blaze.

about 3 hours ago
randallhank in Cookware

Round 3: 2015 Cookware deals!

Also, I am convinced ATK is a shill for All-Clad.

Check out this video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eYt57...

Notice how high the flame is for the Demeyere pastry cream. I can tell you from experience that these pans only need a very low flame for an application like this. Why would they have it so high?

about 8 hours ago
randallhank in Cookware

Round 3: 2015 Cookware deals!

Not an outrageous bargain, but Bloomies has a nice sale on Atlantis saucepan:

http://www1.bloomingdales.com/shop/pr...

ATK felt the 3.2 quart pan had "design flaws," which I guess means that 90% of chef's across France and the United States cook on similarly "flawed" cookware:

http://www.americastestkitchen.com/pr...

In fairness, I do find the 3.2 quart size a bit heavy for the long-handled design. I got the casserole in this size. Still, Demeyere has clad conical pans for more specialized applications. I like the even heating and quicker response of the copper bottom pans, and the 1.6 quart is one of my most used pots. In the smaller volumes I find that the copper bottom variant actually holds temp better than the conical pan.

about 9 hours ago
randallhank in Cookware

Whats a good alternative to al clad?

I actually have the 24cm and 22cm Sitram saute pans, not the larger one. I love my Demeyere saute as well. I can't really compare it easily to the Sitram since 28cm is just more of an ideal amount of floor space. This difference in size exaggerates the disc disparity much more. I submit that when cooking to scale though the differences aren't that pronounced.

about 13 hours ago
randallhank in Cookware

Discoloration of stainless steel?

In my experience "high" heat has little to do with it. Like you, I have see this discoloration when I have cooked at low temperatures. My higher quality steel doesn't seem to get the bluish streaks, just the mineral stains. As a matter of fact I associate good steel with the absence of discoloration.

I'm no chemist, but I'll look into it.

about 21 hours ago
randallhank in Cookware

Discoloration of stainless steel?

The imitation acetic acid works great too.

about 23 hours ago
randallhank in Cookware

Whats a good alternative to al clad?

I have one of these Sitram Le Chef Commercial pans. This one looks like the 26cm one that I have. The handle is crazy long, but the construction is the same as Catering. I paid a premium for mine because it was brand new, but this guy just dropped the price on a used one:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Sitram-LeChef...

about 23 hours ago
randallhank in Cookware

Whats a good alternative to al clad?

I was gifted some Catering pans and they quickly replaced my All-Clad stainless. It was a real win-win for me because the All-Clad pieces sold like hotcakes.

I bet there are lots of grease covered Sitram pans out there waiting to be cleaned. They seem so indestructible. I am always looking for used Catering stockpots and the like, but nobody is getting rid of the stuff on ebay.

about 23 hours ago
randallhank in Cookware

Whats a good alternative to al clad?

Those copper based Cuisinart pans were no joke.

"beats the hell out of middling "clad"."

That's all I'm saying,' man. I used my four quart, fully clad Industry 5 sauté last week, and it ain't got nothing on my Catering pans. Nothing is cooking on those sidewalls either way.

about 23 hours ago
randallhank in Cookware
1

Whats a good alternative to al clad?

Yes, an irregular D5 stock pot will set you back just $300. Highway robbery. I'll take the first quality Zwilling Sensation for $164, thank you very much. Buying overpriced seconds isn't much of an "alternative."

1 day ago
randallhank in Cookware

Whats a good alternative to al clad?

If you don't use induction hotplates I will vouch for the Sitram Catering. You can buy the pieces you need one at a time fairly reasonably on Amazon. It's not as reasonable as it used to be, but they have a few key pieces that won't cost you an arm and a leg.

http://www.amazon.com/Sitram-Catering...

Hold out for a better price on the 3.2 quart sauté, but the sauce pots are quite reasonably priced now, I think.

If you cook on gas I would also recommend the small Zwilling Sensation set, still on sale for $350:

http://www.zwillingonline.com/6600000...

This is an unusual opportunity to buy a first rate set of cookware brand new for rock bottom prices.

2 days ago
randallhank in Cookware

Resisting warp, sticking, and avoiding klutzy fry pans w/induction

Haven't you been reading, Duffy? He wants a Proline, but without the "giveaway" helper handle, and he wants to pay $100 for it. At $140 he'll think about it. At $160 he'll look at the listing, but only if it loses some weight. At $200, he'll decide to buy another four pieces of Staub (all in the same size) instead for $600, very slowly, either from Williams Sonoma in Anaheim, or perhaps on EBAY, but definitely not from Amazon.

Al-Clad Cookware

Yes, but the handle won't match. And what about the store clerks at the historic Anaheim Williams-Sonoma? What would they think if Ray walked in and told them their pan was a rip-off?

Sep 01, 2015
randallhank in Cookware

Resisting warp, sticking, and avoiding klutzy fry pans w/induction

Even if you take the raw cooking performance away, those other factors are still relative, so comparative values are inevitable.

Other cookware may perform great on induction, feel great in your hand, clean up easily, and look pretty and yet cost considerably less. It's just a matter of whether you consider those other options before buying or after.

Ray has always considered price per piece heavily in his decision-making, often buying 3 or 4 similar items "on sale" in lieu of exceeding an arbitrary price limit and owning truly outstanding cookware. It's only a matter of time before he starts selling off his ECI collection on EBAY.

Sep 01, 2015
randallhank in Cookware

Round 3: 2015 Cookware deals!

I've always thought about buying something like this. Any observations about value in home use?

Sep 01, 2015
randallhank in Cookware

Al-Clad Cookware

My pans are never abused, not even the cheap ones. i only hand wash and rarely stack them. If I do nest, I use a pan protector between.

More importantly, I keep kosher, which means I have separate pans for meat and milk meals. This means that my "dairy" pans only get used half the time. And actually they get used a bit less because the heavier cooking is usually the meat meals. And it's not like the All-Clad was my only pan. So if All-Clad's notoriously fragile nonstick can't hold up to some eggs and the occasional grilled cheese sandwich I just don't know what to say. I felt perfectly comfortable returning it to Bed Bath & Beyond, as they trumpeted their no-hassle return policy from the hilltops while my wife and I considered our wedding registry. I also would have felt comfortable making a warranty claim with All-Clad. The former was just more convenient.

Aug 31, 2015
randallhank in Cookware

Al-Clad Cookware

"Like I said, good luck with that. For some reason I don't understand, the All-Clad PTFE is less long-lived than even the rock bottom pans."

I agree. I only cooked eggs and fish in mine. The All-Clad nonstick was returned and the store credit ended up covering for most of an 11" Proline (for $160, back when Bed Bath had them at $200 less coupon), and I have a $15 non-stick pan that makes it difficult to put any mileage on my Swiss Diamond. Ray wraps his crappy All-Clad in a diaper every night and somehow thinks he is "winning."

Aug 31, 2015
randallhank in Cookware

Round 3: 2015 Cookware deals!

Interesting. I always find for chicken I can get about a lb per quart in an oval, but it's a bit tight.

Aug 31, 2015
randallhank in Cookware

Round 3: 2015 Cookware deals!

It's not just that. I also think it's a price that could be found any day of the week. I'd be a buyer at $20. Otherwise I think you spend a bit more and hold out for something nicer.

Aug 31, 2015
randallhank in Cookware

Round 3: 2015 Cookware deals!

I'd skip it.

Aug 31, 2015
randallhank in Cookware

KitchenAid Copper Core Pro - induction capable

This stuff looks and quacks like Demeyere:

http://www.kitchenaid.com/shop/-[KCC7...

Aug 30, 2015
randallhank in Cookware

Staub rim damage?

"In the long run, the original poster will still be unhappy with a Le Creuset."

It depends on expectation. I am pretty cynical about cast iron, and even more so about ECI, but I have found a way to enjoy these pots within their limitations.

If you pay retail though, or close to it, and are honest about, yes the pots are bound to be a disappointment in the long run. Of course, many people never cook with anything much better, so they don't know to be disappointed,

Aug 30, 2015
randallhank in Cookware

Staub rim damage?

LOL

Aug 30, 2015
randallhank in Cookware

Staub rim damage?

I think that might just be the lighting. I had a cherry red round briefly and it was definitely more red, though not far off on the lid from the loaf pan. The loaf pan is definitely the current WS Red. That small oval, though, yeah, it's kind of nondescript, and yes the 4 quart round is more than halfway to aubergine. At the prices I paid I have no complaints.

BTW, I was in WS today and they had an "old stock" braiser on sale that was definitely a grenade piece, completely different from the current brickish color. Also, the grill pans were the more purplish hue. I asked the salesperson who was very snippy about it (expected at this particular store), and she said the tag code indicated merely "red."

So I think what I suspected is true: at one point the WS red was pretty much grenadine or darn close to it, and they have since adjusted the color to make it more distinct. The clerk even said that anything purchased now, in store or on line, would be the more orange/brick color.

Aug 30, 2015
randallhank in Cookware

Al-Clad Cookware

Mine lasted a bit over a year. I took them back to Bed Bath and Beyond. On the other hand, I have a $15 "Wilco" nonstick pan that has lasted me nearly three years.

Aug 30, 2015
randallhank in Cookware

Staub rim damage?

Hi Angie,

Here are some photos of my three reddish Staub pieces:

The first (from left to right) was bought from Zwilling online ($69!), and advertised as "brick." This is IMO a dead ringer for what I see in WS stores now as "red." The 13" fish exclusive fish pan at WS shows the color clearly in the third picture:

http://www.williams-sonoma.com/produc...

The second, a 2.5qt oval (NOT 2.75 qt: the Staub site advertises the 23 cm oval as 2.35 liters), I bought on clearance ($45!) from an actual brick and mortar WS in New Jersey. I think this one looks like the "rouge," and I suspect this was the original WS "red", or "grenadine" before they negotiated as exclusive color.

And the third, still with the "grenadine" factory sticker on it, and on the box, was from the recent cooking.com sale ($82!).

So the first two appear to match pretty closely, although there is a slight difference, especially on the lid. But I would basically call that a match. (the "rouge" color is very close to this but was sold only in the EU I believe). The third is really totally different color though, and even if there is a slight difference in the grenadine, that color always has more of a wine hue to it.

Randy

Aug 30, 2015
randallhank in Cookware

Staub rim damage?

Hi Angie,

I suppose it's possible, especially at an outlet. I think the outlets get a fair amount of product that never makes it into retail stores. I know I have a very rare piece of Calphalon I bought at a WS outlet that was never carried in stores (as far as I know). I just have never seen the grenadine in store and they have appeared to have replaced that color with their own online.

I agree that the WS red is a more earthy (less appealing, IMO) color. The differences are less noticeable on the smaller pieces simply because of the gradient, but the WS hue is, despite what others may think, remarkably consistent from piece to piece. The great Williams Sonoma wouldn't accept less from an exclusive color, would they? Likewise, I would think that by now Staub is quite adept at getting and replicating exactly the color they want. I suspect that Staub may have actually purposely fiddled with the Grenadine color (or both) in order to make the WS exclusive more distinct.

Unfortunately the pictures online aren't as clear and sellers on EBAY often themselves don't know of the differences. Like I said, I made the same mistake, and side by side my WS pieces and my grenadine are actually a hideous mismatch.

Randy

Aug 30, 2015
randallhank in Cookware

Staub rim damage?

The "red" color sold at Williams Sonoma is not the grenadine. From the photos I thought they were the same as well. I even own an oval from WS that I thought was grenadine, but when I bought a grenadine piece and compared them side by side I saw they were quite different. The Williams Sonoma variant is "exclusive" but also known as "brick" on a variety of special pieces made by Staub. So, no they actually don't sell the grenadine.

http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/769603

Aug 29, 2015
randallhank in Cookware

Staub rim damage?

I agree with this overall. I think that they have been letting more pots slip through the quality control and into the 1st quality product stream. That's just my opinion, as I have seen an uptick the "imperfections are part of the manufacturing process" rhetoric.

Aug 29, 2015
randallhank in Cookware

Why don't they make cast iron cookware the way they used to?

6mm being the Stanish?

Ah, hard anodized aluminum. Such an under-appreciated material in these circles.

Aug 29, 2015
randallhank in Cookware