From the Kitchen

Last week I made an asparagus tempura in my new stainless steel pan that Mark got me for my birthday. 

First, before continuing, I should make clear my love for this pan!  It is so pretty, and I swear it cooks everything better, and it makes me feel like a real chef when using it.  Every time I use it I smile and feel happy!   

Back to the tempura, I put the oil in, cranked the heat, and even though I don’t care at all for asparagus, turned out a really good batch of tempura asparagus.

I waited for the oil to cool completely to dump it out and clean the pan, and that is where the frustration began.  The oil had burned onto the pan like a coat of shellac, and I could not get it off no matter what.    

All I could think about was how I just ruined the pan I love most to cook with and how much $$ Mark spent on it.  I didn’t know if I should bash myself over the head with the pan or start crying I was so upset. 

I did a little research and the same two tips kept popping up.  Soak it in a sink of hot water with dishwasher machine soap or get some Bar Keepers Friend and scrub it with that. 

So I soaked it for hours in the sink and that got most of it off, but there was still enough left stuck on there that I broke down and got some Bar Keepers Friend.  Which BTW – I now feel should be a stable in every kitchen! 

I did not love the idea of using a cleaner in a pan I would be cooking food in, but I washed it with hot water and soap after I was done and the pan looks like new!  And, better yet all the oil is cleaned off! 
Lessons learned:
-Know how to use your pan.  Stainless Steel heats differently than other pans, it’s more even and Med heat is like High in other pans.  I’m still trying to get this part right, it will take some time.
-When the users manual that comes with your pan suggests a cleaner (it suggested Bar Keepers Friend and I kind of ignored that tip) get it and use it!
-When making tempura anything make sure you have a thermometer that works in oil, you really do need to make sure it’s not too hot.
-Don’t tempura in you most expensive pan you own…it only leads to tears and frustration! 
Happy cooking and running this weekend.  I won’t be running because I’m going to be wine tasting and enjoying my girls weekend with Michelle, Aunt Candy and Uncle Paul! 

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