Steel Skillet

Steel Skillet

Electric Skillet Versus Plain Frying Pans

Electric skillet are basically frying pans which are usually square or oblong in shape, and consist of flat cooking surfaces, long insulated handles, and sides flaring outwards. It utilizes electricity to serve its primary function of frying, searing or browning food, thus enabling it to function even without a cooking stove. It is equipped with the capability of frying foods over very high temperatures and distributing heat evenly. These can be as small as a 12 by 12 inch square or a 12- diameter pan and can be as large as an 18 by 18 inch square or an 18- diameter pan. In more advanced electric skillet, cooking temperatures are controlled through an adjustable thermostat which can be easily removed or detached whenever necessary such as when the skillet is washed.

In comparison, non- electric skillet or plain frying pans are usually round-shaped. They require cooking stoves to fry, sear or brown foods, thus unable to distribute heat evenly. The amount of heat in this cooking device cannot be specifically regulated as it is directly proportional to the heat from the stove, unlike electric skillet which are popular for their thermostatic control feature. They usually come in smaller sizes, ranging from 8 inches diameter to 12 inches diameter, making them more useful when cooking. Most, if not all electric skillet are made up of stainless steel or aluminum a coating is usually applied to their surface to make them non-stick.

At present, there are three different types of electric skillet. First are electric skillet with plastic lids. These are convenient for preparing quick meals. Second are with tempered glass lids wherein it is easier to monitor the food being cooked. Lastly, we also have those with stainless steel lids, wherein it's much easier to clean, maintain, and store.

Except for some foods with high fat content, the surface of the device is coated with a layer of oil to fry food. The layer of oil serves several functions. First, it lubricates device's surface; Second, it increases the contact or conduction of heat from the device to the food being cooked, thus achieving chemical change in the composition of the food to increase flavor and color. The amount of oil/fat applied varies. When frying beef, chicken or pork for example, the oil is applied in large amounts on the inner surface, but when frying eggs or pancakes, the oil is applied in very small amounts to keep the batter from sticking. Sometimes no amount of oil is needed at all. Some cooking techniques such as blackening or browning as in preparing toasted breads or biscuits only need an intensely high temperature, which quickly cooks the food on the skillet.

Electric skillet have proven to be very helpful and functional compared to the traditional non-electric frying pans, taking into account the convenience that we can derive by just plugging the device to an electric outlet anytime and anywhere we want. Even with the advent of microwave ovens, electric skillet are still used in most kitchens.

About the Author

Find out more detailed reviews on electric skillet and how you could make your kitchen better at electricskillet-reviews.com


Which is better, an iron skillet or a lightweight stainless steel skillet? Why?

An iron skillet, if kept properly, that means never clean it with a brillo pad or an abrasive cleaner and always dry it right away, then take a paper towel and put some cooking oil on the towel and apply the oil to the skillet so that it has a coating, I think is better. They cook more evenly and because you have kept it moist with the oil, the flavor of the food seems to come out much more.



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Steel Skillet

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Steel Skillet

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Making Simple and Sound Cookware Choices   by Yvonne Crooker

If you are just starting out, starting over or jump starting your cookware, consider limiting yourself to just three pieces. This concept may be very hard to imagine if you are like most people who have accumulated a dozen or so pots and pans and skillets. Even as newlyweds, you may have been given an assortment of cooking pieces, in many sizes and shapes. So, why change? Here are three answers-style, safety, and simplicity.

Regardless of your budget or storage capacity, owning just three, well made, coordinating pieces of cookware that are in good condition will take you almost anywhere you want to go in the land of cooking. Cookware is made in several materials including stainless steel, aluminum, copper, cast iron, anodized aluminum, enamel, and coated with stick free finishes. All of these have benefits, but choosing anodized aluminum (or stainless steel) and cast iron will give you many years of good cooking. These materials are safe, healthy, even-heating and will look good after much use.

A cast iron skillet, 12 inches or wider, with a slightly domed lid can be used all day long for endless recipes. From frying eggs, to grilling cheese sandwiches, to sautéing chicken, this will become your go-to piece of cookware. After some simple seasoning, this skillet will heat evenly; stay put on the stove burner and even become stick free with use. Choosing one with a loop handle opposite a long handle will make the skillet easier to move. A clear lid allows you to see what's going on in the pan. Avoid plastic knobs and handles, as you may want to put everything in the oven for the final cooking step.

A heavy, thick saucepan (or pot), holding 2- or 3-quarts, in a thick material and with a good fitting lid is next. A black one in anodized aluminum will compliment your skillet. Here is the pot for boiling potatoes, cooking all sorts of vegetables, and making small or large batches of soup or gravy. And do not forget boiling eggs or water for Jell-O!

A stock pot that will hold 8-12 quarts is the third piece of cookware. A stock pot always is taller than it is wide and is for making stocks out of whole chickens or roasted beef bones. It is also a good pot for boiling pasta, and many come with a pasta insert to withdraw after the pasta's done so you don't have to carry a vat of hot water over to the sink to the colander. Again, anodized aluminum is great (or sturdy stainless steel). Invest in good quality to last a lifetime. Avoid plain aluminum, as it can react with some foods and leach metal into the food.

As you dig out your current pots or take the pans off the pot rack, carefully examine them. Are they scratched, chipped and tarnished? Are there some you never use? Are you missing something? Do you dislike them? If you answered 'yes', then be brave and try buying, or reducing to, these three pieces of cookware. Buy or keep pieces in heavy duty cast iron, anodized aluminum or stainless steel. Throw away any that are scratched and chipped. Give away unwanted and extra pots and pans.

Perhaps Henry David Thoreau said it the best, "Our life is frittered away by detail. Simplify, simplify."

About the Author

Yvonne Crooker is the author and can provide more information about wrought iron kitchen accessories, including wine racks and pot racks, at Pot Rack Place. Yvonne is a retired school administrator who has time now to devote to her creative talents, including decorating, quilting, and photography.

Yvonne and her husband, Gary, a professional musician and finish carpenter, share their lakeside cottage with their two dogs and three cats.
Discover the Old World charm and rustic good looks of wrought iron racks at http://www.potrackplace.com.

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