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Le Creuset help

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Ok, so here's my problem. I currently have a basic set of cookware from All Clad. Plain jane stainless steel, a stock pot, couple of fry pans, a saute pan and a couple of sauce pans. Nothing special, got it as a set at a department store for a few hundred bucks.

I'm looking at Le Creuset to provide some "oven ware", specifically a dutch oven type of deal to make roasts/stews, and other types of oven goodies. At Williams-Sonoma, they said a good first selection might be a 6-3/4 qt oval, since most meat cuts are elongated. They also have a 7qt round I believe, and I'm really confused at to what shape to get and for what reasons.

I think part of my confusion is that I don't understand what a full lineup of basic ovenware might look like. I have all the basics covered for the cook top, but I'm not sure what shapes/sizes allow a home cook to make almost all the necessary items (casseroles, stews, roasted meats/veggies, desserts, side items) in the oven. I think at a minimum, I need one "large" pan in the 7qt range, and 1 small pan, for side items or smaller portions of dishes. Perhaps you all can help me out. Thank you!

I'm mainly looking at the coated cast iron line they carry. I also wouldn't mind suggestions on a brand for a cast iron pan for the stove top, I keep hearing its essential, but I'm not exactly sure for what. My mom uses hers alot, but she doesn't make anything that I can't in my All-Clad so far.
post #2 of 6
I've got a six, five and four quart. does everything I've ever wanted to do for a family of five.

most meat cuts are "elongated"? ah, a short visit to your local supermarket should establish whether that's (a) true or (b) important. short long tall fat skinny, dang near everything fits in my six qt. anything that doesn't is probably a oven roast candidate anyway.

cast iron: Lodge is about the only US manufacturer left. the chinese stuff is probably cheaper but it'll be heavier - accounting for all the lead . . .

a well seasoned & cared for cast iron skillet / fry pan is probably about as close to "non-stick" as you'll get short of modern living through chemistry (read: teflon)
post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
Sounded kind of funny to me to. I mean, I can think of meats in all kinds of shapes. I would figure round vs oval has more to it than aesthetics, but maybe not.
post #4 of 6
>> round vs oval has more to it than aesthetics

I think you're right there - there are a number of cuts that are longer than wide. hence the "truth" that an oval would work is not in question.

consider however, if it fits in the pan, how much more better does it have to fit of be of any benefit?

and here's my "one pot dish" kicker: oval pan, oval cut, tight fit, where you gonna' put the potatoes, carrots and onions?

on the flip side, if you need to have multiple "schufft" in the oven - roast. mac&cheese / potato gratin / <name it> the oval has a smaller footprint.

in terms of "most useful" I'd shy away from the oval. I have a biggie oval cast iron - used it for fish on an open fire. haven't used it in the house for . . . oh dear, don't wanna think about that long . . .
post #5 of 6
I have an oval and love it. It does everything the round can do.
My favorite oval use is King Crab legs.

post #6 of 6
We recently got the 6-3/4 quart Le Creuset oval Dutch oven since it will accomodate longer food items than the round ones. Most of the FoodTV chefs seem to go for this shape. We found it on sale for $200, which seems to be a good deal. We are delighted with it.

We just got a 2-3/4 quart round LC pot, which is great for smaller and more varied dishes. It was on sale for $100, again a fairly good deal.

It pays to shop extensively before picking up this pricey stuff.

travelling gourmand
travelling gourmand
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