Stainless Steel and Waterless Cookware – A Buyer’s Guide
Stainless Steel and Waterless Cookware is a wonderful choice for use in your kitchen – just look at what the professional chefs use in restaurants and on many cooking shows on TV. The advantages of this type of cookware, including the waterless cookware, are due to the many good qualities of stainless steel itself. The cookware is:
A Nice Qualifier Cookware
1. Durable – They don’t scratch or dent as easily as other types of cookware.
2. Resistant to corrosion.
3. Not harmed by the acids in many foods.
4. Not porous – They don’t let metal (or a metallic taste) out into the food.
5. Shiny and keep their beauty – They work with any kitchen décor.
6. Easy to clean without being coated with Teflon, which can blister and flake off.
7. Able to “brown” food, unlike cookware coated with Teflon -This actually contributes to the food’s flavor and the flavor of pan sauces created from the residue left in the pan.
8. Dishwasher safe.
Stainless steel, on its own, has a drawback for use in cookware, however – it doesn’t distribute heat very well. Primarily for this reason, most good stainless steel cookware will be combined with other elements in multiple layers. These extra layers also make for more heavy duty cookware.
Tri Ply (3-ply) cookware consists of an inner and outer layer of polished stainless steel with a solid aluminum core which extends from top to bottom. The aluminum core allows for even heat distribution and avoids hot spots.
The 5-Ply cookware consists of 5 layers of metal. The inner and outer surfaces and an inner layer are stainless steel with aluminum and carbon steel between. The aluminum layer allows for even heat distribution and avoids hot spots.
The 7-Ply cookware consists of seven layers of metal. The inner and outer surfaces and another inner layer are stainless steel. The other 4 layers consist of a carbon steel core for even heating and 3 aluminum / aluminum alloy layers for heat distribution and bonding.
Please note that the 5-Ply and 7-Ply construction may not be that thickness all over, as that could make the cookware too heavy. Good quality cookware would have at least 3 layers all over, one being a good heat conductor. The extra layers may be on the bottom only, possibly in a special capsule. Individual manufacturers may vary the composition.
The newer designations of 9-Element and 12-Element construction are similar to 7-Ply construction. They utilize capsule bottoms with various combinations of metallic elements – I’ll leave it to the scientists to explain the merits of each element.
If you have or are considering getting an induction stove, be aware that not all cookware will work well on them. There needs to be a magnetic property involved. If not indicated in the cookware advertising, you may need to ask.
Rest assured, though, that none of the above constructions of stainless steel cookware are necessarily inferior or superior to another. They all may cook a little differently from each other, and professional chefs may favor one over the other, but most users usually love whichever kind they buy.
Stainless Steel and Waterless Cookware – A Buyer’s Guide – or ‘minimum moisture’ cookware – is made of a high grade of stainless steel and is constructed so that the lid almost forms a seal with the pot. It is designed to heat quickly at a medium temperature. When the proper cooking temperature is reached, a valve that vents some of the steam will ‘tell you’ it is time to turn the temperature to low to finish cooking. Waterless cookware is also greaseless cookware.
In the past, waterless cookware sets were so unique that they were sold primarily at in-home demonstrations and trade shows – some are still sold that way. They were also quite expensive — $1,500 or more! Now, quality waterless cookware has become more common and is available to the general public at affordable prices.
Here are some of the additional benefits you can expect from waterless cookware:
1. Save Money – Due to better heat distribution and lower temperatures, there is less food shrinkage and less fuel used in cooking.
2. Save Time – With the lower temperatures, “pot watching” and stirring are eliminated, and food cooks much quicker.
3. Save Work – They’re easier to clean because there is less sticking at the lower temperatures. You can even cook vegetables and fruits without peeling.
4. Save Nutritional Quality – Scientific studies show that fewer vitamins and minerals are lost into the water when a minimal amount of water is used. You can also cook with minimal grease – very helpful for those of use trying to lower the fat and cholesterol in our diets.
5. Save and Improve Flavor – Foods cook in their own natural juices and taste better, Stainless Steel and Waterless Cookware – A Buyer’s Guide.