Welcome to The Gadget Chef

Ok so I'm not really a chef, but I do like to play one in the kitchen. I'm your everyday average guy, who is really into 2 things, food and gadgets! And I love combining the two and experimenting with that.

I've tried many gadgets out there, some with success and some with miserable failures. But my biggest goal is to limit what space I take up with what gadgets. As a person with a less than sizable kitchen, counter top real estate is so important I can't be the type that has several gadgets out all the time, and I'm also the type that if it's not out and handy, I'm likely not to use it.

So through the course of this blog I will give out some info on those items I've gotten over the years and how I use them, and some recipes, and be sure to share yours too, or comment if you've tried them

Thursday, July 26, 2012

The Original Green Pan

Ok, it's been entirely too long that I have updated anything, so I figured it had best be time to add a little something.

Over the course of the last year there has been a lot of buzz about the health and safety of teflon coated pans.  Now while I am a bit of a skeptic on their overall safety, as I have had one that after being left on a burner for too long the coating did start to peal off and basically it ruined my pan.  I attributed it to being a cheaper pan and my own forgetfulness of leaving it on the stove.  However I did start to think about how much of this might be coming off in everyday cooking.  Considering that was over 15 years ago, and I have sense increased my cooking knowledge 100 times what it was then, primarily my habit of cooking things at way too high of a temp, and I have continued to use teflon pans, it obviously didn't bother me that much.  All this buzz and even my experiences have made infomercials like the "Orgreenic" pan seem a bit intriguing.  As I have stated in the past though, I'm not a big fan of ordering those products from the infomercials due to extreme shipping costs and many reviews of utterly horrid experiences, but find it in the store and I might give it a try.

I had looked at that Orgreenic pan several times at my local Target store, and while I was intrigued I'm also frugal, and several reviewers online about it gave it bad ratings, saying it just didn't last, and while $20 isn't much for a pan, I'd like to at least get a year, and many were saying it didn't last more than a month or so.  Enter my habit of going to the kitchen section of the local outlet stores like Marshall's or TJ Maxx.  While there, I found a Ceramic pan called "The Original Green Pan", and it was only $10.  How could I possibly pass that up.

First and foremost let me start on it's design, it's a relatively simple pan, but unlike many it does not have the rivets for the handle on the inside, so first thought for me, no more egg getting stuck there.  The ceramic coating for the pan sure felt non stick, and it's color is a bit of a neutral gray, so right off the bat it appealed to me much more than the bright green of the Orgreenic.

The real test of the pan though was yet to be experienced.  Of course with a small 8" pan, the one thing I also cook in it and the one thing I really bought it for was for eggs.  So it was time to scramble up some eggs and have breakfast.  While I try to eat as healthy as I can, I don't skimp on flavor either, "Give me butter, or give me death!".  So of course I add a bit of butter, it's something I've always cooked eggs with and something I always will, nonstick or not!  Now there is something I'm guilty of when it comes to cooking on the stove, and many of you I sure are as well, and thats not letting something get up to temp first before throwing it on there. Well eggs I'm doubly so, because I also don't like to dirty up unnecessary dishes, I'm not as lucky as those chefs on TV who don't have to do dishes, although I do have to give a ton of credit to my wife as she does more of the dishes than I do, but I try not to add as many as I could.  So I crack my eggs into the pan a bit cooler and scramble em right in the pan, using a rubber or plastic spatula, I'm not going to tempt fate when it comes to anything nonstick.

The end result of my new ceramic pan.....I love it!!!  It has held up well, although I am probably a bit more careful with it than some of my others, hand washing, never cooking above medium, and always add some sort of oil to it for just about anything.  So far nothing has stuck to it any more or less than any other teflon pan I've ever owned, be it Circulon, T-Fal, or even my Emerilware.  Add in the fact that it doesn't have the rivets and it has officially become my egg pan of choice.

I didn't stop there though, I did try something else, and this was much more of a testament to it's nonstick capabilities than the eggs.  Frozen turkey sausage was probably my best test to it.  I took it directly form the freezer and tossed it into the pan.  Now on my stainless steal pans, this was a disaster.  Since turkey sausage has much less fat than ordinary pork sausage, there was little to no grease to help with the sticking.  The original Green Pan come through like a champ, the only thing that was on the pan during the cooking was the initial bit of char from the initial toss in, outside of that it didn't stick at all.  And that little bit that was left, wiped out with a paper towel.

Now the big thing you might be wondering is, is this product worth it?  That is till up in the air, because I want a pan to last a couple years or more, and I've only had it a few months.  At $10, it's been worth every penny, and I've contemplated getting one of their larger pans, but I'm still a bit skeptical about paying $40 for it.  If this one continues to please me for the next few months I might invest but for now, if you can find one on sale for cheap, I'd say go for it, as far as the Orgreenic, that I don't know, just by feel alone, it certainly doesn't feel like it's made as well as the Original Green Pan, but if any of you have any experience with it, I'd love to hear about it!

Thanks and Good Luck in the Kitchen!