This week in the Back to Basics series we’re talking about frying pans, the workhorse of the kitchen.
More than the grill or oven, most of our meals are prepared in a frying pan; probably because it cooks quickly and meals are easy to throw together: think pan-fried fish, pan-fried pork chops, or sauteed vegetables. A frying pan with a sturdy bottom will last you many years, and my favorite has become a cast iron version.
What kind of pan?
Whenever someone posts the question, “what kind of cookware should I get?” I always say cast iron! Truthfully, I don’t trust nonstick coatings, and the stainless steel that I can afford is kind of thin and doesn’t get nice and hot like cast iron. My ex in-laws used to scour garage sales for cast iron pieces whenever someone was getting married. It might seem weird to give a “used” piece of kitchen equipment, but a good seasoned cast iron pan is worth its weight in gold.
What kind of oil?
Another touchy subject when it comes to frying things is oil. In some circles, to suggest anything other than coconut oil is a sacrilege. However, DH hates how it tastes. Plus it’s not local. And it’s kinda pricey. So I suggest using real butter or any other real oil with a high flash point (for more, see “Pantry Essentials: All about Oil.”)
Mise en Place
The final thought I’ll leave you with today is the importance of using mise en place when cooking with a frying pan. Have everything lined up and ready to go. It cooks fast, and you don’t want to be rifling through your cupboard looking for the curry powder while your pork chops are burning.
Are you a frying pan pro or newbie? What are your favorite tips?
This post shared at Kitchen Tip Tuesdays