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Emeril cookware

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

My brother-in-law offered to buy me a 14 peice Emeril ware set from HSN. I've always thought when it comes to cookware, "you get what you pay for". Is that a pretty good thought process?

I think his stuff is pretty good, right? Its made by ALL-CLAD and is oven safe as well.

One thing I read ppl complaining about, is the "difficulty" of using stainless. Is there something different about using stainless cookware? What am I not understanding?

Any advice would be great!!
post #2 of 9
I recently had this discusion with my niece. She wanted my advice on cook ware. The set I use at home is Lifetime that I bought from a door to door salesman in 1973. They are as good as the day I bought them. They are stainless with a five ply constuction. The center is cast iron with a layer of copper on either side and coated with stainless. The only thing I have problems with is frying eggs in the frying pans. I use a non-stick pan for that. Those pans today would cost probably $1200 dollars. I would buy them again. They are made by Wearever and have a lifetime warranty. Any non-stick surface will eventually wear off. I don't like pans with glass lids because they can break. The glass does no good as far as keeping an eye on your food because they fog up from steam. Don't know why they use glass except it's cheaper to produce. I also don't like riveted handles. The rivets on the interior of the pan collect food and are hard to clean. Also theyt can wear from stress on the handle, loosen and start leaking. I look for welded handles. Some peole like a pan they can put in the oven. I never cared about that feature so I prefer a pan with a plastic handle that stays cool. Outside of that, it's a matter of personal preference. How the pan feels (does the handle accommodate the weight of the pan so it's easy and stable to handle, or is it unweildly). Handle before you buy. If buying stainless (which I recommend) make sure they have a heavy aluminum plate on the bottom. Stainless does not conduct heat well so the aluminum is needed to keep the heat even and prevent scorching. I recently bought a WMF stock pot for work with this type of construction and it is a very good pot. Got it on a close out on the internet for $42 including shipping. That is your other option. Buy the best you can as you can. As with knives, sets sometimes have one pan that is really great and you could use another just like it and other pans that you never use. Or they make a great sauce pan but the frying pan has too steep or shallow sides flared too much or too straight. I have never used All Clad so can't coment on it. I am a little hesitant about celebrity endorsed cookware as it is usually developed based on the chef's experience with commercial cookware and commercial cookware is built for durability more than from a performance stand point. I have never used a commercial pan that was anything close to as good as what I have at home.
post #3 of 9
The saute pan is the most important. You want nice thick sides and the Emeril series doesn't have it. For most applications, a 7" nonstick egg pan, a 10" saute pan, a 6qt pan and a 2qt pan will work. The pans you use for boiling stuff need not have heavy sides but for everything a thick bottom is essential.
post #4 of 9
FWIW, Emerilware is All-Clad's Chinese-made less expensive line. In theory it should be just as good as any other comparably priced stainless. But being as All-Clad doesn't stand behind it's branded products, why would it stand behind a private-branded line?

That aside, stainless, like all cookware materials, has perculiarities you have to get used to. For instance, it is important that you preheat it. Otherwise things tend to stick. And you usually work at a much lower flame than is usual. But once you get used to it, stainless is a fine medium.

Lots of people talk about keeping one non-stick pan for making eggs. Me, I won't have non-stick in the house. You can fry eggs in stainless, if you pay attention to heat levels and proper amounts of oil. Or, if that's too much trouble, just get a carbon steel skillet and reserve it for eggs.

If you do a search, we've discussed this a number of times, and you might gain insights from some of those other cookware discussions.
They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
post #5 of 9
About 2 years ago I acquired an Emeril omelette pan at a yard sale. Stainless steel with 3-ply base, the center layer being copper which is exposed for a lovely decorative ring around the pan. The lady said her sister had given it to her, but that she "doesn't cook like that" (I didn't ask what she meant). I paid $5 for it, and I think typically it would be around $30(?) in the store. Anyway, it's a nice pan, and I enjoy using it. So far, even HubbyDearest hasn't been able to spoil it. It looks nice on my pot rack.
I use BarKeeper's friend.

I think the cookware Emeril uses on his shows might be his signature brand? If so, he seems to be able to cook well with it. (Although, it's unlikely that he does his own cleaning up afterward).

DReed3, are you in a difficult situation, or what? Your BIL's offer is a generous one. Were you thinking out loud that you might like this cookware, or is it his idea? If you like the look of it, and if you think you will put it to good use, then accept the cookware in the spirit it was offered. But what if you don't like it, and don't use it...what happens then? Will he be offended if you decline the offer, will his feelings be hurt if you accept the offer, but then don't use the cookware "often enough"? Will you sell it at a yard sale...let me know if you do. :look:
"The pressure's on...let's cook something!"
"The pressure's on...let's cook something!"
post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
Oh no no, nothing like that. I just didnt know if this was good stuff or if it was buying a name! I just wanted to make sure he wasnt wasting his money. I feel I can cook in basically anything...I mean when it comes down to it, you can either cook or you cant. And while I am no trained gourmet chef, I like to think I can throwdown a good meal night in and night out.
post #7 of 9
I actually am "a trained gourmet chef," which doesn't mean I know squat about cookware one way or the other.

However, what I do know is that the Emerilware that is not non-stick is very good value for the money. I'm not a fan of non-stick cookware at all, and while I won't go so far as to advise you to avoid it entirely -- Emerilware non-stick does not have a particularly good reputation.

As KY said, Emerilware is All Clad's lowest price line. It's fairly well made, should last a long time, and will perform about as well as any other stainless interior, multi-ply cookware else for the vast majority of cooking operations. The world's best, most expensive cookware won't make a you a better cook.

Stainless is not the best performer for many operations, and not the best bang for the buck for anything that doesn't require non-reactive cookware. A couple of skillets, or a skillet and a saute pan (aka chicken fryer -- it's the straight sided "frying pan"), and the three most usefual sauce pan sizes are really all you need in stainless. After that core set, there are better materials than stainless. So, in that sense, a fourteen piece set is probably too big. I'm guessing that the fourteen pieces break down as something like nine cooking pieces and five lids.

All in all it's a generous gift, and unless (a) you can break it down into a smaller set combined with some open stock; or (b) it's got more than a couple of pieces of non-stick; you might as well except gracefully and greatfully.

Tell your BIL from me, he's a heckuva guy.

post #8 of 9

Love the fry pans and cast iron

I have (2) 8" fry pans and (1) 12" fry pan plus a grill and Dutch oven. I use thes at le3ast 2 times per week. They perform very well.
post #9 of 9
I've owned a set of stainless Emerilware for about 5 years, have used them every day along with some other fry pans and Le Creuset, they have performed very well and look like the day we got them. I think the key is that they are a very good value -meaning that for the money you shell out (or in your case your BIL) you get a decent set of cookware. I believe our set was 6 pans with 4 lids for $199.00. Could have cared less that Emeril's name was on them quite honestly, they seemed decent and were a fraction of the price of All-Clad. You can do much worse.

One suggestion - buy a stock pot ( at least a 6qt., better an 8qt.) you'll need one sooner or later. The one in the Emerilware set is a 5qt. and it's a little too small.

Not a trained gourmet chef, I just play one in my kitchen,

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