Questions on selecting, maintaining, and using cooking tools and equipment.

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33
votes
2answers
4k views

What does a healthy cast iron skillet look like?

I've read plenty about how to restore and season cast iron, but I have no clue whether any of the old cast iron I've inherited could benefit from this. Is healthy cast iron black? or should it be ...
4
votes
1answer
226 views

Nonstick pans blistering after dishwasher?

So I have a nice 12 inch nonstick pan, which I always run through the dishwasher, and it's always fine. There's nothing unusual about the pan. But tonight, I needed it for dinner and the dishwasher ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

What's an easy to use juicer that juices oranges as well as other fruit?

I would like to buy a juicer for making fruit juice, including orange juice. But the juicers that I've seen fall into one of two categories: Work for all fruits, but you have to peel oranges. Work ...
17
votes
4answers
759 views

Will using a knife sharpener reduce the lifetime of my knife?

In the long run, is it better to regularly use a knife honer instead of a knife sharpener once in a while to keep the edge sharp?
6
votes
2answers
3k views

How can I make my own small pie dishes and still cook pies effectively?

I need to make individual pies this week. I would usually use pre-bought tin foil containers, approximately 10cm diameter, 3cm high. I can't buy these anywhere near me and have left it too late for ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

Pizza Stone in Electric Oven

I would like to invest in a pizza stone and have read that leaving it in the oven is acceptable and possibly preferable in some ways. However, my oven my electric. Do I leave the stone on the lowest ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

How can you pipe hot melted candy into free-form shapes?

I recently made free-form candy swirls out of chocolate-like coloured candy. When I got to the point of putting it into my disposable plastic piping bag, I had to wrap it in a tea-towel in order to ...
3
votes
2answers
433 views

Do oven door liners commonly need replacing?

The first time I used the "self clean" setting on this oven, the strip of padding around the oven door ... puffed out? Heat leaks out ever since, even to the point where the oven light will sometimes ...
3
votes
2answers
4k views

Grate positioning for charcoal grill?

When cooking on a charcoal grill, does it matter how far the grate is positioned above the charcoal? If so, how high should it be?
7
votes
3answers
15k views

How does a whipped cream charger work?

I recently got an iSi whipped cream container that charges with nitrous cannisters. I don't really understand how the thing works, which I think would help my use of the system. How does this actually ...
3
votes
1answer
318 views

Are there significant differences between different brands of zester?

I'm thinking of purchasing a zester and I need some indication of a good one. Anyone can help me?
5
votes
3answers
1k views

Why spend $150 on a skillet

I can buy a 12" non-stick skillet at Safeway for $30. Why would I spend $150-$200 on one? What's the difference?
14
votes
4answers
22k views

What are the differences between candy thermometers and meat thermometers?

I know that meat thermometers generally won't handle as high a temperature range as candy, but I'm only planning to make caramels and fudge (so soft ball and firm ball) and that's within the range of ...
23
votes
7answers
18k views

What is the proper way to dispose of a kitchen knife?

How do you throw away a kitchen knife (or for that matter, any knife)? It seems extremely dangerous to just throw it in the dumpster, even if it's wrapped up real well.
7
votes
5answers
16k views

What is the best approach to cut carrot into thin strips?

So I went to Subway™ and saw that their carrots are cut into thin strips. I can never do this with any knives. So what is the best way to cut carrots into thin strips (like french fries)?
7
votes
6answers
3k views

Making airier icecream

I've been working on improving my home made ice-cream and was wondering if anyone knew how to get more air into the mix. The ice-cream is great right out of the maker, but once I put it in the ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Overpressurizing a cream whipper?

This might be considered off-topic, but thought it was worth asking, as I have no idea where else to ask -- I'm trying to make something forcibly eject from a cake. I've done some testing with a can ...
1
vote
1answer
694 views

How do I use the clock on my Ilve oven?

I recently bought an Ilve oven second-hand. I can't figure out how to use the clock/timer functions. The oven is 10-15 years old, and all the manuals I have found are for newer/different ovens. Can ...
4
votes
4answers
475 views

How do you keep ebelskivers from sticking?

My sister bought me a cast iron ebelskiver pan, and I've not had much luck with each of the batches I've tried. They always burn or stick. I'm hopeful someone might have a tried-and-true technique ...
2
votes
1answer
595 views

Is it safe to wash Sterno down a sink drain?

I've recently been cooking and using Sterno to keep things warm - or cook. However, from time to time I need to stir, scoop, or manipulate the Sterno in some way. Is it safe to rinse off my utensils, ...
1
vote
1answer
6k views

How long do I need to freeze the freezer bowl when making the second batch of ice cream?

I have made one batch of ice cream, and now I need to make another. I have rinsed out the freezer bowl, and when I dried it I noticed that the water had frozen to a thin film of ice. So it is ...
5
votes
3answers
427 views

Camping stove to supplement an electric hob

I've got basic electric hobs in my kitchen which do a fine job - but a lot of cookbooks suggest that certain things would be best done on an open flame/gas hob (i.e. anything involving a wok). My ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

Stainless Steel Pan — gray bottom. Why?

Just started using a stainless steel pan. First thing I cooked in it was bacon followed by some fried rice. Stuff stuck to it, but a quick soak and it all came off. However, once I cleaned and dried ...
8
votes
5answers
3k views

Are there significant differences between different brands/models of immersion blenders?

I'm thinking of purchasing a new immersion blender as a gift for somebody that has a very old one which is quite literally being held together with duct tape. I own a Sunbeam model which I believe is ...
7
votes
6answers
11k views

Do I need to season a stainless steel saute pan?

Okay, I received a nice stainless steel saute pan for Christmas and in looking around online there are people that say I need to season it. Most of the techniques I've seen involve oil and salt and ...
2
votes
2answers
719 views

What causes the black discoloration on this plastic electric teakettle?

In the break room at work, there is a tea kettle that has some unappealing discoloration. I would like to use it, and lots of people do, but I find it terribly unappealing. I can't remove it with ...
15
votes
6answers
15k views

Can you sharpen a ceramic knife?

Can you sharpen a ceramic knife?
9
votes
6answers
8k views

What causes sticking and what can I do to reduce food sticking to my cast-iron skillet?

I enjoy using my cast-iron skillet, but how can I minimize the amount of food that sticks to it while cooking? I apply oil after cleaning, and for the most part, I only clean it with hot water and a ...
3
votes
7answers
4k views

Cooking food directly on oven rack

Is it common to cook food directly on the oven racks? I often do this (with a container for drippings) and was wondering if this is common or if there is a better solution. It has worked out fine ...
2
votes
3answers
268 views

What are some good tips or techniques for using a carbon steel wok on electric coil range?

I was just given a carbon steel wok for christmas. I used it to cook my first stir-fry vegetable dish and I noticed on that the directions indicated to cook on a high flame. I was not sure if this ...
6
votes
3answers
8k views

What type of frying pan does not warp?

I have a glass smooth-top stove. Every large frying pan that I have bought so far has almost immediately warped so that the bottom is no longer flat. They all end up concave -- like a wok but less ...
12
votes
6answers
675 views

Kitchen safe touchscreen recipe reader

I think it would be nice for me to have a rugged computer based networkable device with a touch screen mounted in the kitchen to bring up those difficult recipes. Does anyone here have any experience ...
4
votes
3answers
8k views

Cast Aluminum Vs Cast iron Dutch Oven

I have seen a lot of meat roasting recipes that require using Dutch ovens, most of the cooks doing the presentations have enameled cast iron Dutch ovens. When I looked into what a Dutch oven is I ...
20
votes
9answers
23k views

Why is it necessary to preheat an oven?

Just about every recipe advises to preheat the oven before using it. I often forget this, but luckily this doesn't seem to matter all that much. Hence my question: why would it be necessary to preheat ...
3
votes
5answers
620 views

How to get cheap cookie cutters?

With the cookie baking season upon us I broke out the cookie cutters for sugar cookies, however almost all of them are pretty deformed or broken (from moving houses). I haven't bought any cutters in a ...
5
votes
7answers
6k views

What is the proper way to maintain a can opener?

I bought a hand crank can opener (Oxo) because of the good online feedback and only use the "shake" dry approach. It quickly developed rust in between the metal. If I invest the time and scrub, I can ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

How can I clean my oven window?

My oven has a convenient window on it. It is very old and covered in soot. I tried what many recommendations say and used water and baking soda together, but it did not cut through the grime. Does ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

What are the advantages of using a stove instead of an oven?

Are there any advantages to using a stove instead of oven? As a woman of science, this is a question that has been lingering in my noggin for a very long time. The main points I'd like to see ...
9
votes
3answers
2k views

Where to find a crepe maker

In my childhood I have memory of a clockwork crepe maker using an alcohol burner Something like this The large drum had a circle of steel wrapped around it, and the clockwork motor rotated it ...
4
votes
5answers
3k views

Le Creuset vs. Lodge Enamel

My wife and I both love to cook and I'm looking to buy a nice, 6 qt, enameled dutch oven. Le Creuset is the first that comes to mind, but I've been doing some research and have since learned that the ...
7
votes
4answers
7k views

How do I keep the rice cooker from boiling over?

Possible Duplicate: Stopping water from bubbling over when cooking rice I am having epic rice-cooker failure here. I measure out the amount of rice suggested by the little cup thingy. I ...
2
votes
4answers
2k views

Is there really such a thing as a muffin scoop?

I've been asked to get someone a muffin scoop as a gift. It was described to me as a 1/4 cup to 1/3 cup sized cookie scoop. I'm extremely confused by this request, as cookies and muffins are ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

how can I tell if my pots and pans are ferrous?

I am looking into replacing my hob with an quick, induction type electric hob, but they stipulate that the the cookware must be ferrous. I have decent cookware, but how do I know if it is correct?
12
votes
3answers
6k views

Utensil materials - plastic, metal or wooden?

I'm just starting to cook for myself in college, and I'm curious what the best material of cooking tools are for pasta in a metal pan and stir fry in a non-stick wok. To make this question more ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

What is a French Rolling Pin?

I was recently given a 'French Rolling Pin' as a gift. To me, it just looks like a fancy dowel-rod. What exactly is it, and what is it useful for?
17
votes
3answers
2k views

Cleaning a Sieve

Is there a better way of cleaning a sieve, other than stabbing at it with a brush, in a manner such as this ? I can't help but think there must be....
9
votes
1answer
8k views

Is Greenpan safe?

We've been using this environmentally friendly non stick pan called the Green pan from Costco and I've done some research on it, but I cant seem to find anything or anyone debunking the safeness of ...
3
votes
2answers
644 views

What is the best way to clean an electric fryer?

I have a Rival RCF15 fryer. I lost the manual and can't find a copy online. It has a fixed metal reservoir for the oil. It has a removable basket. I remember the manual saying something about not ...
5
votes
2answers
207 views

on proper thermometer poking?

When you use a thermometer and poke a large hole in the meat, can you use the same hole to accurately gauge temperature later on?
2
votes
2answers
1k views

What are the best suggestions for cutting gloves

I've never used a cut proof or cut resistant glove but I think it may come in handy when using a mandolin slicer or prepping a bunch veggies. Any suggestions on the pros and cons between cut ...