Cheap cookware, more often than not, proves to be a false economy. The cooking results themselves can suffer and the pots and pans are often easily scratched and marked. Cheaper trays and dishes are prone to cracking, leading you to buy a replacement quite quickly. So quality is very important, however with so many quality ranges available it`s hard to choose between them.
Before you even start looking for your new cookware you need to think about what you really want from your kitchen equipment. How many people do you cook for, just yourself, you and a partner, a family, perhaps even professional catering on a large scale? The answer to this will affect the size and amount of dishes, pots and pans you need. The size of your kitchen and cupboards should also be a factor in the size of cookware you purchase.
If you cook on an industrial scale then you need hard-wearing cookware, where function overrides beauty. For those who regularly entertain at home you will be looking for cookware that not only functions well in the kitchen but can also look good when laid on the dining table. This is particularly important for lasagne dishes, casserole dishes and roasting trays which are often placed mid centre on a table to be served there.
There are also a myriad of materials found throughout the cookware market range. Most people tend to cook with good old time tested metals- stainless steel, copper, aluminium or cast iron. Different metals have differing benefits, cast iron, for example is extremely durable and conducts heat well but is prone to rust and can be very heavy. Aluminium offers excellent heat conduction but can be damaged easily. Copper can react with acidic foods compromising on taste but it also offers great heat conduction. Stainless steel on the other hand is easy to maintain and doesn’t react with foods, but it isn’t the best heat conductor.
Ceramic cookware is very popular and can look great on a table. Ceramics often come in a range of colours which is great for fun loving chefs. Cooking a casserole in the oven and transporting it straight to the dining table is an increasingly popular way to eat.
Finding cookware requires a little bit of research and a lot of thought, including setting a realistic budget. But once you have worked out what it is you need from your cookware in terms of size and material, you can start looking at the different sets which are available. Whether you are looking for a set for the home or a good set of catering equipment, there are many terrific options. A good cookware range should feel natural to cook with and last a generation; and you`ll just know when it`s `the one`.