Happy Fat Tuesday Everyone! I am super excited about the arrival of my new set of Emeril Lagasse cookware. It arrived last night; just in time for our Fat Tuesday celebration this evening. The UPS driver pulled up just minutes before I began cooking dinner. I couldn't open the box fast enough!
I engaged in considerable research before purchasing the Emeril Lagasse hard anodized cookware. There has been considerable controversy regarding Teflon coated cookware, aluminum, porcelain and cast iron. It seems that all cookware has something that could leech into our food. Plus, being The Cheap Gourmet, I was looking for budget-friendly cookware that would provide the results I wanted without breaking the bank.
I chose Emeril's anodized cookware because the research indicated this was one of the safest types. My husband explained the process for anodizing aluminum. In a nutshell, aluminum is dipped in a sulfuric acid bath, than exposed to electrical charges which causes the aluminum to oxidize. Afterwards, the sulfuric acid is cooled to 32 degrees Fahrenheit and the electrical charge is increased which in turn hardens the aluminum. It's actually quite a fascinating process.
Anodized cookware appears to be nearly indestructible. It is non-toxic; scratch resistant; can be used in the oven; provides fast, uniform cooking; and is easy to clean. What more could a girl (or guy) ask for?
Last night we had spicy garlic grilled chicken wings, except we deep fried them instead of grilling. The only thing I needed a pan for was to make the hot sauce.
After washing the 2-quart saucepan with warm, soapy water, I added my ingredients and turned the heat to low. Within minutes the butter had melted. I couldn't believe how much faster the cooking time was with my new Emeril cookware!
When I poured the sauce onto the wings, every last drop of sauce poured out of the pan. If you've ever made chicken wing hot sauce, you know it can be rather messy. But, with the Emeril cookware, clean-up was a breeze!
Another nice feature of Emeril's hard anodized cookware is the saucepans have pouring spouts and the lids have built-in strainers. Colanders have always been a pet peeve of mine. While they are great for draining liquids, they can be difficult to clean; particularly the mesh colanders. With the strainer built into the lid, I can eliminate the colander along with the frustration of cleaning it.
Emeril's cookware lids are made of tempered glass, which is a feature I like because it allows me to see the food while it's cooking. My old set of cookware had aluminum lids that required lifting to see the progress. The only downside I can see at this moment is the lids have aluminum handles which can get quite hot, so I need to remember to use a pot holder when lifting them off.
I purchased my set of Emeril cookware through Seventh Avenue. They offer a low-cost payment plan which allows me to extend payments if I desire. I didn't have to pay a dime to receive the cookware and can pay as little as $25 per month. I find this option to be very helpful for cheap people like myself who don't want to shell out big bucks for high quality cookware.
A great place to comparison shop for cookware, kitchen appliances, household goods and just about anything you could ever want to buy is ShopWiki. Simply type in the product name and ShopWiki provides a list of vendors and price ranges; allowing you to find the best deal.
Rest assured there will be plenty of new recipes featuring photos of my new Emeril Lagasse cookware. I have spent half of my morning drooling over recipes presented at Emerils.com. It's hard to decide which recipe to start with.
Perhaps I should embark on The Cheap Gourmet and Emeril cook-athon and cook nothing but Emeril recipes for a month or two. From the looks of the recipes on his website, I'm pretty certain my husband and I would be perfectly content eating Emeril recipes prepared in our Emeril cookware! And, Emeril, if you're reading this, thank you for the outstanding cookware. I LOVE it!