The ultimate guide to
Whether you cook for a hobby or are aiming towards Michelin-status in your own kitchen, good equipment makes the job so much easier, and will even save you money in the long run.
With so many options on the market, knowing where to start can be daunting, so we’ve put together a broad selection of ranges and individual pans that offer superb performance whatever your budget, this guide will help you find the right kit to meet your needs and match your style, hob and kitchen.
A pan for every task
The choice of pans is simply astonishing! Many are of course intended as multi-use pieces, but there’s an almost endless line of bespoke pans available, tailored to perform a specific cooking task to perfection. Here are some of the ‘experts’…
The term ‘saucepan’ encompasses a whole range of cooking pans these days, but in general it’s a deep pan, often lidded and coming in a variety of sizes and materials for different cooking tasks.
Fry-pans can be used for crêpes of course, but dedicated pans generally have shallower sides, crafted for sliding the crêpe from pan to plate in one perfect piece.
Wide, tall, sloping sides allow for heat to be concentrated in the base so searing is possible, and food can be tossed without it jumping out of the pan.
It’s best not to attempt this classic Spanish dish in anything else – paellas should be shaken, not stirred, and these have dual handles designed for that purpose.
A cross between a deep-sided frying pan and a saucepan, sautéing is a method of ‘sweating down’ food without frying or stewing it.
A healthy way to cook and keep nutrients locked in, steamers come in a vast range of sizes, with a choice of gadgets also available to transform a regular saucepan into a steaming device.
Available in different sizes to accommodate different fishes, kettles are a sure-fire way of ensuring a fish is perfectly poached and remains intact during the cooking process.
Originally for making large vats of stock, they’re multi-functional these days with their generous capacities being ideal for stewing or soups.
A large pan principally for making batches of jam or pickles.
Containing an inset with cup-slots to house the eggs and stop the whites wandering off, egg poachers often double-up as frying pans when the inner part is removed.
Griddle/ Fry-Pan/ Skillet
The terms ‘fry-pan’ and ‘skillet’ are used almost interchangeably these days, but both are suitable for all manner of shallow-frying, with griddles being a healthier alternative.
LOOKING FOR A SET OF PANS?
A set of pans can provide you with the solid foundation your cookware collection needs. Containing the basic pans you’ll need to cook most dishes, you usually get a saving when you buy the full set, rather than purchasing each pan individually. And you can always add more specialist pans at your leisure.
Our broad range of pans and accessories on offer includes a high-quality collection to suit all tastes and budgets, alongside a choice of dedicated pans for specific tasks. You'll also find a world of wonderful devices to further your cooking and make your set of pans more versatile. All our pans are covered by our guarantee.
Looking after your pans
Look after your pans and they will provide you with years of service. They don’t need much maintenance, but to ensure your pans stand up to all your cooking can throw at them giving them a little TLC will ensure your investment lasts.
ACCESSORIES TO GET THE MOST OUT OF YOUR PANS
Turn a pan into a steamer, save on the washing up, prevent all those spits and spatters… we’ve loads of innovative ideas to give your pans extra versatility and care for your new cookware.
Caring for your pans
It's true that a good set of pans should last for a very long time – a little maintenance here and there and there'll last even longer! From checking on the best cleaning methods (hand wash or dishwasher?) to keeping a few points in mind, you'll ensure you'll get the maximum return from your investment.
- Avoid metal utensils on non-stick cookware.
- Avoid abrasive washing-up brushes or sponges.
- Don't put a hot pan into water – wait until it's cool to prevent warping.
- Use a soft surface in-between pans if stacking – our pan protectors are ideal.
- Some pans (e.g. copper) require a specific cleaner – always read the manufacturer's instructions.
- A high heat can shorten the life of some non-stick pans.
- The quality of some non-stick pans can degrade over time if used in the dishwasher, even if they are labelled dishwasher-safe.
There Are Four Main Types Of Hob:
Your hob should play an important part in finding the best pan/pan range for you. Some hobs are better suited to certain materials, and some will not perform at all unless you use a specific metal. It's also important to consider the appearance of your hob and kitchen décor when choosing cookware – if your cookware looks out of place when cooking, you're less likely to want to use and look after it.
Fuelled by gas, oil, electric or solid fuel, range cookers create a high heat and require a heavy-duty pan to prevent warping, such as one made from cast iron.
There's a huge range of electric hobs out there, including ceramic, halogen and solid plate. Ceramic offers quick and even heating, solid plates are usually slower to warm up and down, and halogen has many a die-hard fan due its energy efficiency and effortless clean-up – all can be used with any pan material.
Whatever you need, whether it's a new set of pans or an individual piece, it's an investment that deserves careful consideration.
Every Lakeland pan offers exceptional quality – far more than you would expect for the price. Ranges elsewhere on the market may be slightly cheaper, but won't compare in terms of quality and longevity. Invest in a pan or range from Lakeland and you'll see the difference straight away.