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Food/Nutrition Columnist Author: Jo-Ann Heslin, MA, RD, CDN - Food and Nutrition Columnist - Last Updated: Sep 7, 2017 - 10:06:33 PM

What’s New In The Kitchen -- Nonstick Skillets

By Jo-Ann Heslin, MA, RD, CDN - Food and Nutrition Columnist -
Nov 25, 2012 - 11:05:16 AM

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( - If you are anything like me, you have the same favorite pots and pans for years. I recently had the opportunity to cook with two new lines of nonstick skillets – Emeril Stainless Steel 8-inch and 12-inch Skillets and the Technique 8-inch and 10.5-inch Enamel Lightweight Cast Iron Frypan Set. Both took me out of my usual comfort zone of well-worn frying pans but the experiment proved both instructive and worthwhile.

You would not go wrong with either set. They would be a great gift for someone setting up a kitchen, a college student looking for a few utensils, or for the cook looking to modernize some of her well-worn pans. Both sets performed well, distributing heat evenly, heating up quickly, and holding heat well. The handles were well designed and did not get hot. Cleanup was fast for both sets because of the nonstick surface.

Emeril has teamed up with JC Penny, introducing a new line of cookware. The Stainless Steel Skillet Set comes with a nonstick Teflon interior coating which allows you to use less oil for frying. The handle grips are silicone. The frying pans are oven safe to 350oF and can be used on all stovetops. They are dishwasher safe. I was introduced to this cookware at a luncheon where Emeril demonstrated the line and cooked lunch for the participants. Now that was fun and it is a pleasure to report that not only is Emeril a great cook but he is a friendly, congenial host who happily discussed food and cooking techniques with those enjoying lunch.

The Technique Frypans are lightweight cast iron with a Dupont Teflon Scratchguard Ultra coating interior and an enamel exterior. You can use metal utensils with these frypans. For those looking for the even heat distribution of cast iron without the old fashioned weight of traditional pans, this is a nice option because it is 40% lighter with the same cooking efficiency.

It is recommended that you use only medium to low heat when cooking because cast iron holds heat so well that higher temperatures can cause burning. It is also suggested that you do not use nonstick cooking sprays because they will burn and create a sticky residue. Sadly, I made this mistake and did get a smoky mess on my first try. After reading the material that came with the frypans I corrected the mistake. The coating on the frypans performs so well you only need the amount of oil or butter you wish for flavoring, not for frying. The frying pans are oven safe to 500oF and can be us on all stovetops. They are dishwasher safe but the manufacturer recommends hand washing. The frypans are available with black, blue or red exteriors.

My only disappointment with both sets is that they came without lids. I often use frypans, especially heavier ones, for stewing and simmering. I like lids for longer, slower cooking -- a personal bias that may not matter to others.

You should know: As of January 2012, all Teflon nonstick coatings are manufactured without the use of PFOA (perfluorooctanoic acid).

For more information on the Emeril skillet set, go to:
Suggested price $40.

For more information on the Technique cast iron frypans go to:
Suggested price is $39.84 on QVC, the only retail outlet for the set at this time.

© NRH Nutrition Consultants, Inc.
Jo-Ann Heslin, MA, RD, CDN is a registered dietitian and the author of the nutrition counter series for Pocket Books with sales of more than 8.5 million books.
Look for:
The Complete Food Counter, 4th ed., 2012
The Diabetes Counter, 4th Ed., 2011
The Protein Counter, 3rd Ed., 2011
The Calorie Counter, 5th Ed., 2010
The Ultimate Carbohydrate Counter, 3rd Ed., 2010
The Fat Counter, 7th ed., 2009
The Healthy Wholefoods Counter, 2008
The Cholesterol Counter, 7th Ed., 2008
Your Complete Food Counter App: ClickHere

For more information on Jo-Ann and her books, go to: The NutritionExperts


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