Cleaning tips to help your cookware last longer

10 TIPS for cleaning and caring for your cookware

Most people enjoy cooking but next come the tiring and time consuming part – washing up! Worse of all, some stains are difficult to get rid of. Here are some tips to clean your pots and pans as well as how to care for them so that they will last longer.

1)       Before the first use and after each use, wash pans thoroughly with mild dishwashing detergent and warm water.

2)       Allow your cookware to cool down, ideally to room temperature before you start washing or soaking as sudden temperature changes may affect the cookware.

3)       Clean your cookware with a soft sponge. Never use abrasives such as steel wool, to avoid scratches. If you need to remove something hard on your cookware, try using nylon scrub or soak in luke warm water before removing with soft sponge.

4)       For aluminium cookware, do not use them in dishwashers or keep them in soapy water for a long period of them as this may cause discoloration.

5)       For non-stick cookware, use low to medium heat if possible. Prolonged exposure to high heat can ruin non-stick linings and weaken the cookware. Moreover, cooking at high heat increases the risk of having stubborn burnt food stuck to your pans.

6)       Try not to use metal or sharp-edged utensils to prevent scratches.

7)       If you are using stainless steel cookware, lemon based washing powder or detergent works best. It will also help to improve its mirror finish.

8)       Nothing will do a better job than vinegar when it comes to removing stubborn stains. Boil some vinegar with water and with some scrubbing, it should do the job.

9)       Salt is also useful. They can be used to remove stains such as burned milk from pans as well as remove grease from iron pans.

10)    Careful storage is also important for the lifespan and performance of cookware. We recommend storing your cookware on a pot rack instead of stacking, as it may cause dents and scratches which will reduce the life span of your cookware.

Put your muffin pan to better use!

Flip over your muffin pan to make delicious ready-to-fill bowls! Simply wrap the baking cup with cookie dough and bake at normal temperature. When it’s done, you will have your cookie cup molds ready! You can now use it to hold ice cream or fruit or anything you like!

Can’t visualize what we’re talking about? Here’s a glimpse!

 

Here’s an easy cookie dough recipe to help you start with.

Ingredients

  • 125g butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup caster sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 cups plain flour
  • 1/4 cup custard powder

Method

  1. Mix butter, sugar and vanilla extract until light and fluffy. Add egg. Beat until well-mixed.
  2. Sift flour and custard powder over butter mixture. Blend well.
  3. Wrap and refrigerate until well-chilled. Your cookie dough is ready!
For something more challenging, make some tacos ( a traditional mexican dish composed of a corn or wheat tortilla folded or rolled around a filling). And here’s what you should finish with!

 

 

Omelette made easy!

Are you thinking of what to have for breakfast tomorrow? Why not make omelette with your favorite fillings? It’s easy with this omelette pan!

Looks tempting? Try it and let us know how it turns out!

 

What’s the best material for your pots and pans?

Can’t decide between cast iron, stainless steel, aluminium or non-stick? These are the more common materials used for cookware.

First, it’s most important to choose the best pan you can find within your budget. You should also consider things like functionality, design and ease of cleaning.

Should I get the cast iron pan? Cast iron is exceptionally good for browning and producing rich flavours as it is a near perfect heat conductor, heating evenly and consistently. As it can withstand very high temperature, it is ideal for searing and frying. Although a little less expensive than other cookware, they are normally more bulky and harder to clean. It has also been said that when exposed to acidic ingredients, there may be particles that are released into your food which may slightly change the taste.

Some may have a preference for stainless steel as they generally look more attractive with their shiny reflective  surfaces. Although they cost more than their fellow peers, they are more durable, easier to clean and better at retaining flavours. However, they do not conduct heat as well.

Aluminium is used in most cookware manufactured today because of its excellent heat conduction and it is light weighted. However, because it is a soft metal, it may react with certain acidic food which is why it is generally made in between other metals. If you are buying an aluminium cookware, we recommended getting one that is anodized and has a non-stick coating so that it is scratch resistant and the metal will not come into contact with your food.

Non-stick pans are getting more popular these days. Not only are they easier to clean, you need less effort to keep food from getting burnt. You also require less fat when cooking. However, if rich flavours are important to you, the non-stick pan might not be suitable as they are not particularly versatile at high temperatures. Non-stick surface will eventually wear off and the pan will have to be replaced. There are various grades of non-stick cookware and some of the high quality ones have coating that can last a much longer time.

As you can see, each pan has its own good and bad. In fact, there is no single BEST pan, only the most suitable pan to suit your needs.

 

Have you got your workhorse?

We are sure most of you already have this pan at home which we’ll like to call it the workhorse.

If you’re wondering exactly what we’re talking about, it’s the Heavy-Bottomed Pan with a lid. Some also call it a wok or a sauté pan or a chef’s pan. But this is exactly what we are talking about. We will call it the workhorse here!

One of the most frequently used item in the kitchen, this pan is medium in depth, has flat thick bottoms, round mouths and flared sides.

Whether you are a seasoned cook or a first-timer, having a workhorse pan is key to cooking at home because of its multipurpose functions which can be used for frying, stir-frying , braising, slow-cooking and any other thing that you can think of. This pan is also often used for browning on high heat and for dishes with sauce. It is designed to respond well to quick changes in temperature and have long handles.

Its wide flat bottom allows enough room to stir-fry the ingredients so that there’s no overcrowding. If the pan is too cramp, it’s likely that the ingredients get burnt or end up getting soggy. A flat bottom also allows the pan to rest more stably on your stove.

When choosing a pan, a long handle is important because you will need to move the pan around. Even if you do not flip ingredients in the air like what chef’s do, it is likely that you will still need to shake back and forth. A long sturdy handle will give you a great feel when cooking. So when purchasing a pan, check that its handle is securely fastened to the pan. You will want one that uses heavy screws with their handles. Make sure that the handles are also heat proof. We find that as you start to cook longer, some handles get heated up easily which make it difficult for you to hold.

Besides the handle, the lid is as important. Make sure that it fits tight to the pan. We personally prefer a glass lid as it is more convenient since you can easily check the inside, instead of needing to keep lifting the lid which may disrupt the cooking progress.

Now, have you got a workhorse in your kitchen yet?

 

We make you merry

For all we know, the kitchen has always been the heart of the home.

Having been in the home and kitchenware business for years, we’ll like to give a helping hand to all our readers here. Sharing with you all that we know, including tips and how tos in the home, in particularly the kitchen. Whether you are looking for new ways to use your recently purchased pan or deciding between a Chinese wok and the American style wok, we hope our blog will help you make a choice that makes you merrier at the end of the day.

Feel free to leave us your comments or ask us any questions. We more than welcome them.

Lastly, don’t forget to start shopping at www.merrymaker.com.sg to see what we have in store!