Whether you recently purchased a new home or had renovations done, getting new homeware and cookware sets is most likely the next thing you would do. Or perhaps you simply want to upgrade your old utensils, pans, and pots into new styles. Whatever the situation is, it’s a good time to look for kitchenware that are perfect for the latest recipes you’re trying or parties you’re planning to throw in the future.
Buying a homeware set is not easy. New brands are introduced in the market each time, and they come with different styles, sizes, and materials such as cast iron, stainless steel, copper, and aluminum. With all these in mind while keeping within your budget, you just don’t know what to buy.
Does this mean that you need to know a lot about such materials to make an informed decision?
What Should you Look for When Buying Homeware?
Some types of homewares, such as barware and kitchen utensils, last longer while maintaining their good looks. Stainless steel has this characteristic, plus it doesn’t react with alkaline or acidic foods and won’t scratch or pit easily. It’s even shiny and easier to clean, so you don’t need any special care techniques.
Another common durable material is aluminum. It is lightweight, attractive, less expensive, and a jack-of-all-trades. Though it requires extra care to keep it clean and shiny, it gives even heat distribution in any heat temperature, which is perfect for cooking.
Some cheap kitchenware sets are not as high-quality as the expensive ones. However, like any other thing, there is an exception. When buying stuff for your kitchen, such as bowls, trays, and pitchers, the rule of thumb is to buy what you can afford.
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Learn the materials of the homewares you’re buying. Each piece in your kitchen or home is designed for a specific task in cooking, preparing food, and eating. That is why these tools and utensils are made up of different materials, having benefits and drawbacks.
For example, glass is ideal for baking but not practical on top or surface cooking. It’s also high-maintenance to ensure a longer lifespan. Another material is cast iron, which is undeniably sturdy but must be kept seasoned to prevent rust. You can rub salad oil without salt or shortening inside and out and let it dry. Before using, keep in mind to wash it with soap but not detergent.
If you think you don’t have extra time to shine your kitchenware every night just to keep them looking good, you might want to reconsider purchasing copper and cast iron materials. While stainless steel is more expensive than these two, many choose it because it’s low-maintenance. You don’t have to pamper the sensitive coat to stop peeling or season to avoid rust.
Unfortunately, there are kitchenware materials that are not safe for some food ingredients. For instance, non-anodized and uncoated aluminum cookware can leach metals into food during the cooking process. Unknown to many, acidic foods increase leaching. Although studies found that the amount of leaching is minimal at a tolerable level, it still contributes to your overall metal intake.
Some materials are better heat conductors than others. For example, copper is a good heat conductor but not stainless steel. When it comes to cooking, the better the heat conductivity, the more your food will evenly be cooked. In addition, when you turn the heat up and down, copper cookware reacts faster to temperature change than stainless steel.