Have you ever realised that sometimes, cheap is not always effective?
In our life together, the Husband and I have accumulated some lovely bits & pieces of kitchenware – a Dualit toaster, some le Creuset pans, and a couple of really good knives. However, when it comes to that necessary item, the small frying pan, we have always taken the view that ‘non-stick’ never actually is, so we buy a cheap one in the supermarket, use it till it is thoroughly useless and get another one. The handles usually start to wobble fairly early on, and once my mum’s been to stay and applied her own special approach to the washing up, you know that it’ll have a limited life – limited more or less by the number of pancakes it is required for. Despite our best intentions, we have never got round to getting a proper pancake pan (I’d love one – there we go – that little nugget is out there now) – so the little frying pan is the one that gets pancake duty.
Anyway, that’s all well and good and then something comes along to shatter your little pre-conception that really there would be no point spending any more money on a little frying pan that’s going to be used from everything from eggy bread for breakfast to crisping up chorizo for a smart salad, and trying out a new way for fried green tomatoes.
A local cookware company, BayTree Cookware recently gave me the opportunity to ‘test drive’ a Scanpan CTX 8”/20cm fry pan . They already stock most of the Scanpan ranges and have just added this induction compatible pan range.
There is lots of technical information available about the pan on the BayTree Cookware website, and I won’t go into details about that here – you can look it up easily enough. What you want to know from me is what it’s like to cook with – and I can tell you that it is a gorgeous thing to have on your stove, both to look at (because let’s face it, that might be all some people do with it) and to create lovely things with.
Looks wise, the brushed stainless steel exterior is very strokeable, and the pan has a good weight when you lift it by its beautifully shaped, tactile handle. The handle, by the way, looks very firmly riveted on – there wasn’t a hint of loosening over the few weeks that I have been using it. Nick at BayTree did advise me that it was better to use a medium flame (I have a gas hob) than high, and though I followed this advice, some slight tarnishing has occurred to the base of the pan – but quite pleasingly so. I am reliably informed that this will easily clean off with any stainless steel cleaner. I didn’t test the assertion that the special coating on the interior of the pan was such that you could also use metal implements (on a non-stick pan – yes really, it says that), although I did prod the pork steaks with a fork a couple of times.
And is it non-stick? Is it ever. It has cooked me through any number of slices of eggy bread, pan fried pork steaks, crispy bacon, and green tomatoes without a hint of a stick or a burn, and then washed up like a dream. Although I have only been using it for a few weeks, I have reason to believe it would carry on in the same way for a long, long time.
Now in terms of price, you’ll appreciate that we’re not talking cheap here. It’s not something you could just go and pick up (or chuck in your shopping trolley in Sainsburys because it was there), and it would definitely be an investment – and on the basis of my experience, a worthwhile one!
Overall, therefore, if you are looking to spend money on a good quality, hard wearing small frying pan, I would say this was a good buy. Good looking and practical – definitely an investment.
The views expressed in this review are my own – I was not required to provide a positive review.