Buying a new set of pots and pans for yourkitchen may not be very difficult, but there are a number of considerations before you should part with your cash.
Firstly, of course, you need to set your budget. Pots and pans and casserole dishes and other stove top and baking and oven ware comes in many forms and all price ranges from very cheap to extremely expensive.
If you can, its a good idea to invest in a good quality set as this will last far longer than a cheap set from a supermarket or market stall. Plus, good quality cookware can certainly make the act of food preparation into a pleasurable art.
Of course, cheap also means you may have to replace the pots more often, so this can be a false economy, and you generally get what you pay for, certainly as far as cookware goes.
A word of warning here to the many pet owners who keep beloved pet parrots and birds- your choice of cookware needs to be very carefully considered as the wrong choice can be lethal for your feathered friends. Cookware widely available called “non stick” as well as other proprietary names, is potentially fatal to pet birds when heated. Thousands of our avian friends have died as a result of the toxic fumes emitted by this non-stick coating when heated. The coating is known as PTFE and if cookware contains this (check the label very carefully) it should NOT be used by bird owners. If you have any, and you own a pet bird, bin the PTFE cookware or give it to people who do not keep pet birds.
Cookware which is coated with a ceramic coating is safe for birds, and is generally of a better quality than PTFE coated cookware. It also cleans up easily and is often also suitable for use on induction hobs. A quick way to check if pots and pans can be used on induction hobs is to see if a magnet is attracted to the base – if it is, it will work on an induction hob,if it isn’t , it won’t.
Cast Iron cookware holds heat very well and is coated by some manufacturers in an enamel coating which is also safe for use in households with pet birds. Cast Iron can be very heavy, however, and unsuotable for use by some people with medical problems like arthritis.
Other good quality choices include stainless steel pots and pans and copper, lined with stainless steel. Copper, in particular, is the choice of many an eminent chef.
Some people will want all their cookware to match, and have a specific modern or traditional design. Others will want designer, iconic brands in their kitchens, to complement their electrical goods. Yet others still, will be happy with simple, utilitarian cookware which is functional.
Whatever your choice, you will inevitably need to live with it for some time. So take your time, consider the options, and if you own pet birds, think of their safety when you will be cooking. Research your purchases carefully before you commit to them and enjoy using that cookware for many years to come.