Sauteing is a fast method of browning food that uses “dry heat,” or a boiling pan and very little oil. The pros keep things moving by flipping and tossing the food in the pan with a wrist flick and a quick, jerking reverse action. To put it bluntly, try not to burn anything if you are not a professional.
But if the Food Network has inspired you and you’re ready to enhance your cooking game, it may be time to choose your own saute pan. Here are five things to keep in mind while shopping for sauté pans:
1.Things to Think About When Using the Stove
Selecting the best saute pans involves thinking about how they will fit on your stovetop. When using a flat cooktop, it’s recommended to use a pan with a thick, flat, disc-shaped base made of many layers of metal. Wobbling, spinning, and uneven cooking might arise from pans that don’t lay flat (and keep flat over time!). The thick disc bases also help diffuse heat uniformly and reduce hotspots, which is an asset to any cooking surface. Because of the swaying action above the burner, a flat bottom is also required. However, while using gas, it’s essential to use a pan with a “clad” structure of layered metals (2- to 7-ply) to distribute heat uniformly over the whole surface.
2.Extremely Loud Music
Pans constructed of metals that transport heat fast, effectively, and evenly are always favoured, as is the case with any high-quality cookware. This includes aluminium that has been anodised, lined with copper, or encased in stainless steel. Clad construction, also known as ply, is used when a pan is built of many metal layers. In most cases, two- or three-ply clad pans are optimal, although options go as high as seven-ply. Prices increase proportionally with the number of plies.
3.Average-Sized and Athletic
A saute pan can’t take the role of a regular frying pan. To begin with, a pan should be medium in weight so that it can be lifted and tossed with little effort. Being unwieldy is a bad idea. On the other hand, saute pans have to be broad enough (about 10 1/2 inches) to hold ingredients without crowding the pan. Overcrowding the pan will result in the food steaming or boiling instead of sauteing, which will take longer. This pan would be a sleek sports model with a fake rear bench for a show if it were a vehicle.
Sauté pans come in various sizes, the largest of which may hold up to seven quarts of food. A consensus exists amongst experts that pans with a capacity of between 3 and 5 quarts are optimal.
4.Choosing a Side
Typically, saute pans have L-shaped edges that are relatively high, minimising oil spray and helping to minimise spills while moving the pan from the cooktop to the oven. The high sides are great for simmering sauces while sautéing vegetables or meat. If you want things saucy, you may want to choose a pan or dish with a smaller bottom area and spread sides for easier pouring. In the end, it’s the recipes and the cook’s whims that determine what’s required.
5.Having a Hand (or Two) in the Situation
Because of the constant motion necessary for sautéing, saute pans are characterised by their long handle; some models even have two. A “helping handle” is often attached to the other side of the pan to make it easier to pour sauces or other contents from a hot pan. Oven-safe handles are a must for sautéing pans since many foods must be browned on the stovetop before moving to the oven. Pick a pan in which the handle is made of a different metal than the pan itself if at all feasible. The handles will stay cooler thanks to this design detail and the “hollowed out” shape.