Best saucepans I've ever owned
I got this set of pans as a frequent flyer reward and they are fantastic. I get an even cook every time and they are incredibly easy to clean. I accidentally fell asleep and burnt a roast to a blackened crisp and it was easy as pie to clean up the pot afterwards. The lids don't get too hot and very rarely does food stick. They are fantastic and I would recommend them to anyone.
Purchased in March 2019 at qantas .
Tefal Frypan - At last a non stick frypan that has had some longevity...
We have gone through a range of non-stick fry pans including Scanpan, Circulon, Raco an so called ceramic fry pans but all disappointingly lost their non-stick capability either within or soon after twelve months of average use. We are aware about the effect of high heat on non stick fry pans and have been diligent in that regard.
We decided to give the Jamie Oliver Tefal pans a go and have been pleasantly surprised that they are still going strong with just over twelve months use. No sign of deterioration in the non stick capability and hopefully this continues in the foreseeable future. Perhaps the first time I can recommend a particular non stick frypan with a degree of confidence.
Our fry pans were from the Jamie Oliver Tefal Premium Stainless Steel range.
Very good quality, though not quite perfect
I have to state at the outset that I am not a great fan of Tefal products, having had previous bad experiences with this brand: firstly an iron that stopped working after three months; and then a non-stick frypan that lost both its 'red spot' and most of its non-stick properties after less than 6 months of use. Plus (in my humble opinion) Jamie Oliver is a very mediocre cook, whose fame is more due to his personality than any great skill, so the fact that his name was on these products was if anything a turn-off. So for all these reasons I didn't have high expectations for this set of supposedly premium cookware. However, I have had to adjust my opinion after using these high quality products.
This set – consisting of 2 large non-stick frypans, plus a large shallow pan, a large stewpot & a small saucepan (the latter three with lids) – had been well-packaged and arrived by post in perfect condition. No medium-sized saucepan was included, which was something of a disappointment because this is an item in our existing cookware that is used very frequently. Both the pots and the exterior of the frypans have an extremely shiny stainless steel appearance; and all the items – apart from the small saucepan and the lids – are quite heavy. While these features are certainly appealing and would appear to indicate above average quality, my initial concern was that the surfaces might scratch & scuff very quickly; and that the weight of the large saucepans when full could make them difficult to handle, especially for elderly people or anyone with weak wrists.
The box stated that these items were suitable for induction cooking, but unfortunately our new Bosch induction cooktop is still sitting in its packaging in the garage, since the planned new kitchen renovation hasn't yet got off the ground. So they ended up being used on an old electric solid-element stove, well past its retirement date but still capable of producing quite high temperatures when used at the 'max' settings.
All of items were comparatively slow to heat up on our electric elements, but that is probably directly related to their very heavy bases. We quickly became accustomed to this characteristic and generally spent the couple of minutes while we were waiting chopping or otherwise preparing whatever we intended to cook. Once heated up they cooked very evenly, with no hot spots, and retained the heat really well.
I particularly liked the steel handles with silicone inserts, which were very sturdy and also very comfortable to use because they seem to improve one's grip. They are attached to the pans & pots by rivets rather than screws, which might make them less likely to become loose after a few years of use. Importantly, despite my initial concerns they never become hot to the touch when used on our electric hotplates, even when things like stews, soups and curries had spent a couple of hours on the stove, or when very high heat had been used to sear steaks etc. They would of course remain cool on induction cooktops, but it's possible the metal could get unpleasantly hot if used on gas stoves. So far I have not used any of the items in the oven, so can't verify whether or not the silicone inserts in the handles would withstand the really high temperatures (up to 220C) stated in the small instruction booklet.
Over the 7 weeks they were used all the items performed very well. In particular the non-stick surface of the frypans has been impressive. Even after being subjected to several "torture tests" – high temperature cooking of chicken/lamb pieces or pork rashers marinated in a slightly sweet Thai-style marinade – that had damaged a couple of my previous non-stick pans, the non-stick property of these ones seemed to remain totally unaffected. The resultant blackish caramelised residue that stuck like concrete to other frypans came off very easily after just a short soak and gentle washing, and they were subsequently able to cook things like crepes & pancakes without any sticky patches at all. The stainless surface of the two large saucepans has also proved to be surprisingly good, being particularly easy to clean and not scratching or scuffing to any appreciable extent. However, we have always tended to hand-wash pans & pots, and they mightn’t have retained their good looks so well if they had been routinely put through a dishwasher.
One thing I rather disliked was the fact that the lids on this set were solid steel rather than glass, and also lacked the little hole that lets steam out to reduce the risk of a boil-over. Our existing cookware had these both of these very useful features, and I now much prefer glass lids since they allow you to so easily check how cooking is progressing without the bother of repeatedly taking lids off and back on. The other slight negative was that the lids just sit on the rim of the pots rather than fitting into a groove. However, in practice this didn’t seem cause any problems: the lids didn’t rattle and they never slipped off on the few occasions when there was a accidental boil-over.
The red ‘Thermospot’ feature on the frypans has always seemed like a gimmick, since widely different temperatures are needed to successfully cook various foods – for example steaks versus crepes – so we both just mostly ignored its existence. But it’s possible that some people, especially novice cooks, might find it useful – provided that (unlike our previous Tefal frypan) it lasts for more than 4 or 5 months before fading away completely.
One of the things we did when this set arrived was to check out the prices being asked for it on various internet sites. These ranged from just over $800 down to a little under $400. It seems to us that if you had to pay anywhere near this top figure you might perhaps doubt that it was really worth the outlay; but a purchase price of $400 or so does represent quite good value for money, providing you are not too put-off by the lack of a medium-size saucepan.
It would have been preferable to have tested this cookware for a longer period than just two months before writing a review, because in my experience the performance of non-stick frypans in particular can deteriorate appreciably over time. I would have felt a lot more confident about my assessment had I used these frypans for 6 months or more. Having said that, this cookware set does appear to deserve the appellation "premium" in almost all respects; and I believe that most people would be happy to have it in their kitchen.
The cookware is "ok" - but I think the IKEA set is three times better.
Overall the cookware set was "ok", we were given the set as a gift, but I wouldn't recommend buying one. We have a $70 IKEA cook set called OUMBÄRLIG that we find to be top notch and will be going back to it. There are a few things that let the set down...
I found it puzzling that the set didn't include the most basic instructions for how the frypan works or how to best care for a high end product. What is the red dot in the middle of the frypan for? Does the dot change colour? How long will I expect to wait before the frypan is up to temperature? I had to look this up on Tefal website, and it wasn't straight forward to find. I found out the red dot is called the Thermospot. It changes to a solid red dot when the frypan has reached temperature. I thought being a Jamie Oliver branded product there would have been a bit of a cooking idea brochure... guiding me on how to best use the different pots and frypans. But there wasn't.
Not enough heat...
The number one thing that let us down was the pots and pans don't heat up enough on electric hot plates.
We tried the frypans on two sets of electric hotplates and found the frypans don't get enough heat into them. Cooking snags, steaks, onion, mince dishes etc took a lot longer than using our IKEA frypans. We actually disliked using the frypans. As I have mentioned above, the Tefal website says the Thermostat (red dot) in the middle will change colour when the frypan is hot enough. Even after pre-heating the frypan for ten minutes they weren't hot enough and the dot never changed colour. Maybe these types of frypans are better for gas cook tops... which we don't have.
The set lacks a full compliment of pots....
The set is lacking a pot size to boil potatoes for a family of five. The set includes 2 frypans, a small pot and a large low pot. The small pot is big enough to boil 6 eggs and the larger low pot is way to big, you might use it for cooking a big soup. We had to pull out our IKEA 3 litre pot to boil vegetables.
The handles are... ah... different...
We found the handles on the pots and frypans to be a bit industrial... they look nice I guess, but feel like I'm holding a crow bar in my hands. Being the frypans have a thick base and weigh a bit more than other frypans, the handles aren't all that comfortable to hold.
The non-stick surface proved a high quality, although we never got the pans up to a high temperature to find out how the non-stick surface would truly cope.
Overall we had an average impression of the Tefal set, maybe this set is designed for gas cook tops, but on electric we found them very slow to cook with. It actually annoyed us how slow it took to cook our usual meals. As a point of reference we found the IKEA OUMBÄRLIG cook set brilliant and will be going back to using it.
On the fence ....
On opening the box I was impressed, a stylish and attractive set. Each piece is weighty too, much heavier than the Anolon set I’ve used for some years.
My first use of the largest pan meant oven cooking, and on finishing, it was washed up in the sink by hand. The non stick interior makes this a breeze. It’s my favorite part. Cooking and clean up are so easy.
The exterior shiny finish though is kind of disappointing. There are marks that remain after use. They’re quite subtle and probably only noticeable to me at the moment, but disappointing regardless. I’d expect the shiny finish to remain shiny.
The same large pan is the same capacity that I’m used to, but with its very flat lid, holds less. A slightly domed lid makes a huge difference. Food sticks to this one. As well, I personally prefer a glass lid, so I can see what’s happening without having to take the lid off - especially if it’s in the oven.
I like the fact there are two similar sized frypans. Other sets I’ve purchased previously tend to have varied sizes but I personally don’t see the advantage in that. Two the same (or nearly) are better when cooking for several people. I don’t mind that the large saucepan isn’t non stick as I can see many uses where it wouldn’t matter, but I don’t understand why the smallest also isn’t non stick.
I’ve used these on a gas cooktop and was surprised they took significantly longer to heat up than my previous cookware, presumably the weighty base impacts here. But once they are up to temperature, I didn’t notice any difference. In the oven, I also found it seemed to take longer for the food to get to temperature. At 30 minutes, the meal was not as advanced as I usually find. But by the end, it was cooked as usual, so in this instance it didn’t matter, but might when cooking for a shorter time.
I’ve not used Tefal cookware before though I’ve heard of the indicator - I just didn’t pay any attention as it didn’t apply to me. I’m disappointed that it took some googling to know how it’s supposed to work. There’s an image on the box, but no reference in the booklet. If it’s a feature, Tefal should shout about it. There is no information that I could see with the pans that explain. Should I really have to search?
All in all I am relatively pleased and I’ll certainly keep using them. It’s early days but it seems to be a good quality set.
Most aspects of this cookware set are great, the main criticisms I have are in regards to seasoning the stainless saucepans and the handles of one of the frypans coming loose.
Capacity and Item Selection
The shallow pan is probably my favourite piece in this set - the width and depth make it super versatile, and personally I love the double side-handles. The two other frypans in this set are too similar in size for my liking (26cm and 28cm), and I find I just use the larger one all the time and leave the smaller one tucked away in our storage cupboard. On the other hand however, I sort of wish the saucepans in this set were a little closer in size. The small one is very restrictive - you can really only make a sauce, boil a couple of eggs or make 1-2 serves of pasta in it before it reaches capacity. Two big serves of pasta would be really pushing it for this small saucepan, but would take up so little room in the large saucepan that it seems like a waste of electricity to heat the whole thing up.
Love the heft these pans have, and the heat conduction/distribution is great. My only complaint is that within only a couple of uses the handle on the 28cm fry pan had come slightly loose and now jiggles a bit. This a not a deal breaker but I did expect better.
The non-stick is great and I have had no issues cleaning them (I have only hand-washed them, I haven't put any of them in the dishwasher yet). I have a few other stainless steel pans in the past that I have seasoned, and to be honest the two saucepans in this set didn't seem to take to the seasoning as well as I expected. However, I would be willing to put this down to user error, even though this wasn't my first time doing it. The saucepans did seem to stain a bit, and I still found them too sticky.
After this first month of use I'd say it seems pretty likely that I'll be still happily using this set in years to come, despite the few specific criticisms I've outlined here. The set certainly looks swish, and I'm hoping the loose handle I have is just a one-off manufacturing issue, not something systemic.
UPDATE: Feb 2019
After about 10 months of use the non-stick coating has started to come off. This is on the same pan that had the wobbly handle, and the coating is peeling near the handle rivets, so I assume it's a result of the handle movement putting strain on that area.
Purchased in April 2018.
The Great, The Good and The Great Unknown
Sturdy and well made
Printed volume gauges on interiors
Oven-safe stainless pots
Larger pieces quite heavy
Sizes in set mean no lids for 26/28cm pans
Following recommended washing regime doesn't properly clean non-stick coating
Lids for pots could be heavier gauge steel
Handle rivet heads on insides
Our Tefal Jamie Oliver (TJO) cookware set has been used almost daily by two cooks for one month.
We have an electric stove with solid round elements.
First impressions? It's a looker. The little details are well realised, the finishes and tolerances very neat and attractive. It's almost a shame to store them in cupboards.
Secondly, the substantial weight of each piece. A blessing and possibly curse for anyone weak of wrist. This is something to consider for hand-washing and serving.
If buying online, here are the weights of our set:
26cm fry pan: 1315 grams
28cm fry pan: 1512 grams
Saute pan: 1839/2422 grams with lid
16cm saucepan: 717/953 grams with lid
Stock pot: 1492/1912 grams with lid
Most of the weight can be attributed to the heavy bases used, and it's in use where their benefits are quickly seen.
Starting with the fry pans, the balance is very good despite the heavy bases. The cast handles with silicone inserts are comfortable, feel sturdy and very secure. We also have cheaper Tefal and Arcosteel non-stick pans and their handles feel very cheap in comparison. Understandable as they're plastic.
Omelettes, quesadillas and various meats cooked in both TJO pans were browned and/or cooked in roughly 25-30% less time than our cheaper pans. I put this down to better heat conduction. Additionally, there remains a wonderful evenness of heat on the cooking surfaces, as evidenced by the cooking progress clearly visible regardless of relative food positions in the pans. Flat stuff like eggs or omelettes show this best.
This is something we take for granted with cast iron, but our cheaper non-stick pans would warp after a month or so of use (approximately 12 heating/cooling cycles). Note that we never max out heat with any cookware and after use they are removed from the stove and left to cool on silicone heat pads.
The non-stick coatings still look new with even colouration and surface textures. However, the washing regime recommended by Tefal is to use a soft sponge or cloth for these. We followed that advice and superficially they looked clean. Then I took a clean, dry paper towel to the surface and managed to rub out brown food residue!
Look at any surface under magnification and you'll see the peaks and troughs. Switching to the scourer side (green nylon I'm guessing) using moderate pressure set things right.
Not sure what this will do for endurance of the surface.
The saute pan has been used for uncovered browning, then covered slow-cooking ~1-1.2kg chicken breast with great success. These were for quesadilla which were assembled and finished using the 26/28cm pans. For us, the process is easier as previously we'd brown the chicken then bake at low-ish temperature.
Now it's done in one vessel on the stove top.
Similarly, the stock pot has simplified our pot-roast by again going from stove top browning/rendering to oven at 180C. The pot handles require a tea towel or oven mitts for safe removal, but this is standard procedure. The results (we've so far made this twice) are the best ever. We thought it was a fluke the first time, but last night made it again.
Guess what's for dinner tonight?
The smallish 16cm saucepan has been perfectly fine when called upon too. It's too small for the amount of pasta (420 grams dry) we cook, but for smaller duties it's fine. Both pots with stainless cooking surfaces have volume gauges printed on the inside walls. It's a nice touch, but we're accustomed to measuring volumes beforehand. Handy for those who don't, or simply to verify quantity of the completed dish for portioning etc.
The stainless steel lids are mirror-polished and look great provided you dry them to prevent water spotting! Although on the lighter side, they haven't moved or rattled in use. Note that we don't cover a rolling boil, but rather just for simmering.
About the only thing that irks me about this set is the exposed (albeit smooth and well finished) handle rivets on the interior walls of each piece. For some this may be a deal-breaker. For me, it just means extra care and attention when washing and drying. My other negatives (above) are even less critical to me but I've tried to be as informative as possible -- they may be more relevant to you.
Would I recommend this set? Yes, on the condition that you find it for a good price. Yes it's Tefal, but also yes it's made in China. I would consider it at the upper end of Chinese-made European style cookware. So what is considered a "good price"? That's entirely subjective, but I will advise searching and comparing as many retailers as possible. I've seen differences of up to 300%.
The Great Unknown?
Finally, the question of longevity can only be addressed with periodic updates which I'll add (as comments) from time to time.
Good quality pans, great non stick coating
This is a quality cookware set. Well constructed, even heat distribution, and a very slippery nonstick coating. It's also a really good looking set, with polished stainless steel, and riveted handles. Overall this set performs really well, and is of good quality. There are a few design issues, which I'll go into a little later.
Cooking with the nonstick pans is a pleasure. As with all heavy based pans, they take a while to heat up. The heat distribution is excellent. Cooking a 4 egg omelette shows just how even it is. The omelette then slides straight out of the pan, with no residue. Clean up is easily achieved by hand washing in hot soapy water. While the instructions say the non stick pans are dishwasher safe, it does recommend NOT putting them in the dishwasher. This is most likely due to the harsh chemicals found in most dishwasher detergents.
The small saucepan is a good size. Great for anything from sauces and gravies, to a couple serves of rice. The larger pot is good for soup and pasta. However, it does require a lot of heat to keep water boiling properly. The lids fit well, and despite having no steam vent, they don't clatter about when on full boil. The brushed stainless steel inside the pots had me a little concerned about food sticking, but even rice comes out cleanly, and the dishwasher does a great job of any residue. It's also a good pot to brown meat in for casseroles, as it has a large surface area for frying.
Baking and roasting with the large nonstick pan was good, too. The handles come up higher than the sides of the pan, which gives good stability when taking a heavy roast out of the oven.
Now for the faults. The handles on the fry pans are awkward to hold, especially given the weight. I'm used to cooking with cast iron pans, so the weight for me is not a problem; it's how the pan feels to hold. If you are looking at this set, go into a store somewhere so you can pick up the pans and see if you can deal with it or not. There is a small strip of silicone on the underside of the grip that seems a bit pointless. In fact, it probably contributes to the odd feel of the handle. A thicker handle, with no silicone grip would have improved the handling greatly.
Next is the size of some of the pans. The size difference between the small and large fry pans is minimal, and makes the large fry pan feel superfluous. The large shallow pan works well as a large fry pan, and it has a lid. Perhaps removing the large fry pan, and replacing it with a large saucepan would have made the set much more flexible. If the lid of this saucepan fit the small fry pan, that would have made for a very flexible cookware set, indeed. The fact that the lid from the large pot fits neither fry pan is rather frustrating.
As far as caring for the ceramic nonstick coating, just wash them by hand, and you won't have a problem.
Mostly great pans, but still some improvements required
I have been using the Jamie Oliver Tefal Premium Stainless Steel 5 Piece Cookset on our ceramic cooktop for over a month now. Overall, I have found them to be very good. In fact, the more I use them, the more I like them! But there are a couple of serious issues I have with this set, too, which is why I only gave it 3 stars instead of 4 - I shall explain further down.
On the positive side, the handles on the 5.2L stew pot are fantastic - perfect height and easy to grip and they don't get hot. I can't fault them. They're also not bad on the pot roast. The handles, however, on the frypans and 1.5L saucepan are not overly comfortable but nevertheless quite manageable. The 5.2L stew pot is great for making soups or reheating them. It's a great size and is a perfect fit for my kitchen, where I have saucepans a bit smaller, or pots bigger, but none quite this size. The only improvement I could make on this pot would be for a lid that lifts up instead of flattening in, as sometimes I make too much soup (whoops!) and then I think...'Mmm...maybe I just won't put the lid on...' because it will overflow! But otherwise, the pot does not rattle with the lid on when things are boiling away inside, which is good.
The 1.5L saucepan is perfect for making custards and other sauces where you need to use a whisk. The bottom of the saucepan is shaped perfectly for this and makes it easy to achieve a lump-free end result, so I was very happy with that. I was also happily surprised to find that the flat lid on this saucepan also didn't rattle when its insides were boiling! It's a lovely little saucepan, and I think the larger saucepans like this would also be a treat to use. It's just the handle that's not wonderful - every other aspect of this saucepan is wonderful, and this is coming from someone who prefers glass lids over metal lids, too!
The pot roast is perfect for making curries - and when you're pouring leftovers into containers, it just slides right out with no scraping required! I make all my curries in the pot roast now, it's the perfect size and makes for less work for me at the end (except that it ought to be hand washed - more on that later in this review).
If you're going to be picky, these Jamie Oliver pans all do take a while to heat up, but once they've got their heat on, they're great. Nice and even heat and the red spot on the frypans is a good visual marker to know if it's ready. If you're worried about it, just put the pans on a bit earlier than you would for other pans, while you cut up your food. I haven't found it to be a problem for me, anyway.
I suppose every pan or pot can have its little issues (too heavy, takes too long to heat up, not the most comfortable handle, doesn't seem quite the right size or shape sometimes etc). The frypans are really quite heavy (it's easier to put them on a potholder if they're full when I'm serving out) but I still find I use them quite a lot. And I was very good and followed the directions when I first started using the non-stick pans. I began using some oil on a paper towel and wiping the insides before using them, to season the ceramic finish. I have found that although they are 'non-stick', using just this little bit of oil on the surface every time you use it actually stops things sticking - fried eggs are a perfect example here. If I don't lightly oil the pan with a paper towel before frying eggs, when I go to turn them over, they can sometimes stick a little. If I oil the pan first? Voila! Perfectly turned eggs every time. So you can see why I oil the 'non-stick' pans before each use! I also find that these frypans can dry out food a little - but this is only evident when you are pan frying meals that have very little fat in them (eg sauteing asparagus & pumpkin). It's not a problem for bacon! I had to add some oil to the dishes where fat was not really in them, just to make sure that they turned out OK - on top of the light oiling required beforehand with a paper towel. So if you're watching your fat intake, these pans are not for you. And if you're looking for an easy non-stick pan, these Jamie Oliver pans are also not for you! With their ceramic finish, they're high maintenance pans.
Now this ceramic finish has me a bit perplexed - initially, I was a bit concerned, as quite a bit of black residue (I guess the loose ceramic finish?) came off each time I wiped the pans with some oiled paper towel, and I was starting to wonder if the black stuff was ending up in my food?! The black smudges on the oiled paper towel seemed mostly from the very top of the pans, where the ceramic finish meets the stainless steel outer part (not a problem if you're lifting food out of the pan with a turner, but obviously still a problem if you're pouring food over the top of the pan!). Anyway, after a couple of weeks, these black smudges subsided a lot and I figured that it was probably part of the seasoning of the ceramic finish. However, I can see that a lot of people would be put off by this. I DO, however, have a few questions as to the chemistry involved with the ceramic finish: if you wipe it with a damp paper towel, no black smudges come off. As soon as you add oil, then black smudges come off. Given most food has fat in it, wouldn't that mean that some of this ceramic residue is ending up in your food? This concerns me. A lot. Because I don't know what's in the ceramic coating exactly.
I would also like to point out that the non-stick pans do NOT do well in the dishwasher, even though it says you can put them in the dishwasher (but hand-washing is recommended). My main concern is that even though the non-stick pans look clean afterwards (and we have a fantastic Bosch dishwasher), they are not clean! Once I made a bolognese sauce in the pot roast (which was awesome) then put the pan through the dishwasher. It looked clean. Wiped with a damp paper towel it was still clean. But wiped with an oiled paper towel? A whole pile of red tomato grease came off with it! Using these non-stick pans in the dishwasher is a dangerous idea if you have any food allergies in your house (which we do!) because I think some of the food from the previous meal somehow stays in the ceramic finish - which is then only brought out when oil comes into contact with the ceramic finish. Perhaps the sodium hydroxide or some other component in the dishwashing tablets reacts with something in the ceramic finish - who knows? If you hand wash, the hidden food does NOT appear to remain, so I would suggest you only hand wash the non-stick pans - and that the instructions be altered to say that they should be hand washed only and to not put them in the dishwasher! Scrubbing (perhaps with less 'basic' (chemically) cleaners) is obviously required.
The fully stainless steel pans do well in the dishwasher - except for the outer rivets that seem to be made from aluminium. These outer rivets go a dull colour after just a couple of washes in the dishwasher. It really annoys me that such expensive cookware has external aluminium parts. Why couldn't they just use the same quality of stainless steel as the rivets inside the pan? It would look much better and be better for your health as well.
Overall, the fully stainless steel pans are easier to use and in general are really nice pans with easy care. The non-stick pans are high maintenance and have their problems with the ceramic finish and I think they need to be cleaned better before they are packed into boxes and sold to consumers. But even with the issues and queries I've had with these pans, I still find them very good and use them a lot. Perhaps a 3 & 1/2 star would be the more correct rating.
Questionable price range and manufacturing origins
Firstly, I have never owned nor used this product or any others similarly in my entire life prior to this review. I have only researched briefly by going to stores locally such as the likes of Myer and David Jones.
Upon receiving this via the postal courier service, I had a brief read of the packaging and when looking at it from afar. I found the packaging to be of poor quality. Nothing really gave you an impression that what you were receiving was a high quality item.
The manufacturing origin and labeling that did not boast the level of confidence towards my initial experiences. When it said it was “Made in China”, my expectations weren’t really encouraging.
Opening the packaging and box, it did not give me much further thought about quality other the overuse of plastic bags, cardboard and plastic protective pieces everywhere.
Picking up the 5 piece set in pieces.... it is certainly heavy and did give an initial thought of some quality other than the words at the bottom of the product pieces “Made in China”.
Using the largest piece, I and a friend cooked roast lamb in the oven. Also cooking home-made mashed potato; spaghetti bolognese, fried slash barbecued lamb chops, beef steak and eggs and stir-fry vegetables.
I was rather impressed with the level of heat induction it had, which meant taking less time to cook by improving efficiency. In addition to that especially for the non-stick surface; it meant it was very very easy to clean with a sponge (non-scratchable surface).
From the above, when going to Myer and David Jones, I saw similar Jamie Oliver products selling ridiculously expensive with no idea from my own perceptions as to why it was just so?
When looking at perhaps a comparable or better quality product such as Essteele; especially that it was also similar but had a copper lining and a mixture of copper and stainless steel. Better yet, it was “Made in Italy”.
This product immediately screamed to be of high quality, however, it was surprisingly cheaper. Although as I had never tried Essteele products either, I am unable to properly determine whether it is better than the product I just tried.
Despite the inclination of this product being made in China; insofar, it seems to live up to the claims it boasts and if you look after it and clean it properly; it should last you a lifetime and perhaps be able to pass it from generation to generation.
Although, I do wish that since there is TEFAL labeling around; perhaps looking at changing the manufacturing origins; to the likes of some European countries, in addition to the price. I would not think twice about going out of my way to go and buy it.
Although, for what similar Jamie Oliver products of what I have seen sold in stores like Myer and David Jones. It is a lot of money. Just as we all know Myer and David Jones to be a brand; I think there just needs to be more for this reviewed product.
Cooking on top of a stove, the handles can be too hot handle. Although those with silicone on the handles cannot be used in the oven. That being said, cooking on top of a stove should be more careful as it can damage the handles.
Overall, these products are heavy, so if you’re not use to lifting objects with one hand; or have a disability, then you will need two hands to lift them or someone else who is more capable in assisting you. Being heavy, does it mean it is a quality product? I am uncertain to say with experience. Although compared to its direct competition, especially Essteele, they are both just as heavy.
- Heat Induction Works (takes less time to cook)
- Easy to Clean
- Non-stick claims
- Poor Packaging - does not correspond to asking price of the product
- Made in China (Questions build quality and reliability)
- Heavy to some people (Not good for individuals who can’t lift with one hand)
Good quality, if the price is right!
Wherever possible, I prefer to keep reviews succinct, as I don't believe many readers have the patience to read lengthy trials and tribulations some people seem to have in the simplest of situations. As in this instance, using a set of saucepans to prepare some food shouldn't require a PhD thesis. Also, I am taking in to account that my meal preparations now utilise a mixture of ovens, microwave and convection, freestanding steamer, electric wok, deep fryer and infra-red meat grill, so the saucepans actually only play a minor role in my kitchen. Generally, the frying pans are used much more, so I like and use the "Thermo Spot" heat indicator.
Manufacturers who brand their products with a celebrity endorsements, are probably misleading some buyers in to believing that somehow or other the products are going to help them attain the same level of achievements as the celebrity. Newsflash... if you couldn't cook like Jamie Oliver before buying this cookware, you not going to witness any great improvements once you've started to. However, here are some observations you might like to take in to consideration if you are in the market for cookware:
* Well made stainless steel cookware, but might be a little on the heavy side for some people.
* Solid steel handles, look great, but can get too hot to handle without an oven mitt.
* Lids are plain stainless steel and without any venting holes, so you need to lift the lid to see or stir
(don't forget the other mitt on the lid handle) and personally, I'd prefer vented glass lids.
* Excellent non-stick surface on the frying pans, but personally I'd prefer all pans were non-stick.
Whilst I don't question the well-made and presented cookware in this package, I believe it suffers from some design flaws and wonder just how much (if any) Jamie Oliver contributed to the design. Noticeably, similar products available in the cookware market, that use celebrity endorsements, bear the same inflated retail prices, as this set at $899.
Needless to say, if you do some online shopping you should be able to find it much more reasonably priced, as I did at $369. So just what is the mark-up on these Chinese manufactured pans? I shudder to think. However, if I had to pay $899, I'd want the Naked Chef to come and cook at least one meal for me and show me how he manages the hot handles, steel lids and food sticking to the steel.
Impressive Cooking Set with some minor issues
I received this cook set in a well presented large box, well packaged so as not to scratch each separate item. The cardboard rings used to protect the pans inside are great to keep if the pans are stacked on top of each other when not in use. The set consists of 2 fry pans of varying size, a very large shallow pan with steel lid, a stew pot with metal lid and a smaller saucepan with lid. The pans have a non stick surface inside and are high quality stainless steel and the pot and saucepan are all stainless steel. All lids are stainless steel. Two great features are the wide flat handles with a silicone grip underneath and also the inside markings for measurement. These items feel high quality due to their weight however the handles are designed so they wont roll in your hand when lifting as they are fairly heavy. The handles are riveted on the pots/pan and all lids have very good quality riveted handles that do not heat up excessively when heated. The pans have a Thermo Heat spot which changes its shade of red as the pan becomes hotter which is ideal for the novice cook. I have tested all the items thoroughly with various dishes. The saucepan simply does the job of a saucepan but in my opinion is a little small for a large family meal. It cooks great however, after a few washes in the dishwasher it does lose some of its sheen even on the short wash. There are 2 frying pans which I have used for cooking eggs, chicken, and steak. I have used these on both gas and electric hobs and they perform excellent. I have had them to a very high temperature and have not noticed any degradation of the non stick surface at all. I have used plastic implements and also metal just to see how they withstood abuse and there were not even any scratches. This included whisks. The Thermo spot worked fine but I have cooked for many years and its not a feature I need to use but its there if I was uncertain of the temperature. I then decided to use the stew pot and made a large amount of pumpkin soup. It did a great job and there did not appear to be any surface sticking. I even finished this off in the oven just to give it a test and it produced a great result. Finally I used the Shallow Pan. For this I bought a flat chicken and surrounded it with various vegetables and did a roast after first browning everything on the cook-top. It came up a treat and I think this item would also be great for a paella or similar. I also cooked pancakes in it as a novelty and this is where the Thermo Spot showed its true potential. One issue with this though its that its huge and may encroach on another hob on the hotplate. Also with a full roast its heavy, really heavy, so take care lifting and use both handles with hand protection. For all of the items the cooking process was very good and after demonstrating them to my Chef son he was also suitably impressed with the quality and excellent cooking results. Most people would be happy to have them in the kitchen. The downside of this set is not as noticeable but after several trials became more annoying. The 2 frying pans are great but do not come with a lid. None of the pots that have lids fit or come close to fitting the pans. The saucepan is only big enough for a 2 person meal and I think cooking for 4 or more people would be a real struggle. If the stew pot was slightly larger then the lid from that would fit at least one of the frying pans. To me not having the lids and a big enough saucepan makes little sense and another larger saucepan and 1 middle size frying pan with the stew pot or saucepan lid choice would make much more sense. Lets face it we rarely cook using 2 frying pans at once but we often use more than 1 saucepan so one good size pan with a lid option would be the way to go. The shallow pan would be fun to use but needs a lot of space to store and it will take up most of the bottom tray of the dishwasher if you wash it in that manner. So all in all great fun to use with some limitations.
My final advice would be to hand wash this set to preserve the finish rather that using the dishwasher. If you follow this they will look good for a long time and they clean easily using the manual method. The non stick surface performs great and seems very durable but be careful lifting with large food items as they can become heavy. Other than that experiment and enjoy!
The best set of pans I have ever owned by a good margin but still some room for improvement
- Dishwasher safe!!!!! I love you Tefal/Jamie! (They actually dish wash really well)
- Really good thick bases on all of the pots and pans. They have 'good heft' as my Gran would have said.
- The heat distribution on all of the pans is excellent and very even across the entire base. This makes a considerable difference to the outcome when cooking with gas. I have not ended up with any burnie bits on the bottom since I started using these. (This is good because I often forget to stir stuff)
- The stainless steel finish it really matches my kitchen and these pans look the part.
- I would give the frying pans 5 stars if reviewing separately.
- The non-stick finish is good and they always come out of the dishwasher clean from a normal cycle. Though due to the good heat distribution I have not had any burned on bits to test it with!
Room for improvement
- The metal lids are light and feel a bit 'cheap' for what is a premium set. I think I would have preferred glass lids like those that come with the hard anodised set or an extra 1/4mm of metal in the lids would probably have done the trick.
- The handle on the lids can get hot enough to burn skin when cooking something for a long time. I have asbestos fingers but had my wife touched it she would have had a blister.
- What would be really great is if the lids for ALL of the sets could be brought separately.
- I am not sure why the set included two frying pans of nearly identical size. Either two the same size, one half the size or better a larger sauce pan (as in the anodised set) instead would have been better in my opinion. (That said having two large frying pans is still useful.)
- The lids need a hole (Which I have now added with my electric drill). Without it the first thing you know about a pan that is about to boil over is when it burps a load of liquid all over the cook top. A 1mm hole near the rim gives a few seconds warning but doesn't compromise the contents.
- The large pot handles can get very hot when cooking on a gas hob due to the heated air coming around the side. Best handled with oven gloves at all times!
This is the best set of pans I have ever owned by quite a margin however there are still some flaws and I have some reservations about what was included in the box. That said while the hard anodised set has the glass lids and the additional saucepan rather than the frying pan I wouldn't trade as I really like the stainless steel finish.
- All testing done using a gas hob.
- My wife and I use these pans daily to make food for the family and make everything from scrambled egg to Arancini.
- Even these fantastic pans do not allow the average human to cook a Jamie Oliver 15 minute recipe in 15 minutes.... ;-)
Great pan set, hard to fault, highly recommend
Short version; Heats up well, non-stick properties are great (titanium non-stick as opposed to PTFE/Teflon). Good weight without being heavy. Easy to clean, tolerant to metal kitchen tools & only very minor issues found.
I really like this set, the entire set is a good mix of sizes, the 38 shallow pan & lid especially is a really nice one for everything for making foods that require a lot of reducing or stewing. Want to try a paella in this next week, looks like it'd be great for that.
The design, feel & weight is great, they're a solid feeling pan without being too heavy, so they also hold their heat well, not as good as a very heavy iron pan but better than any other non-stick I have ever tried. The non-stick properties worked well with several egg dishes attempted over a few weeks and at no time did I feel I needed to add a lot of extra oil/butter to keep it from sticking, in fact quite the opposite, I often reduced the amount substantially. Cleaning afterwards could easily be done with just a wipe from some paper towel.
I've owned other brands of titanium-based non-stick pans but these respond a bit differently to the others, and in a better way overall. Any titanium style non-stick is vastly superior and longer lasting than a Teflon based one (also without the possible health hazards Teflon can bring if you over-heat the pan). From what I have tried, these are the best of the titanium style by a good margin. Only a longer testing period will tell me if this remains. For comparison, I found that another brand started to have surface issues after 2 years on average. For those unaware you can use metal utensils in a titanium lined pan, just don't use a knife or a whisk (don't cut or beat it up). The handles with a bit of silicone in the middle also feel great, never got hot during cooking and the silicone was enough to add to the grip a bit especially if you have slippery hands after food prep.
I also like the heat dot thing on the frying pans, I like that it tries to help the cook to identify when the pan gets hot enough but this is also my first complaint, it's really hard to see the change in the dot especially when I got my father to try it, he couldn't tell the colour difference with his older eyes. Heat distribution was even, no observable hot-spots. I don't know how else to put it but they felt predictable in terms of temperature management. You have a fair idea when it's ready to start cooking with them, were heavy enough that they kept their temperature well enough when adding items, yet reduced temp quickly enough when you turn the heat down (I have a gas stove top).
The 2x pots are "just" stainless, no non-stick coating. This isn't an issue as you're usually going to stew or boil with these anyhow. However, my second minor complaint is here, after boiling a few spuds for turning to mash, keeping the heat under the pan, with the water removed, to dry them out a bit before mashing them, this caused a small discolouration to the pan. Not major, or even really concerning, but noticeable meaning they'll lose their amazing shiny finish with a bit of use. Despite washing them and scrubbing a bit this couldn't be cleaned off either, likely needing a polish to remove. Again no biggie just something to prepare for.
Finally, while they can be placed in the dishwasher it's not recommended as it will affect the look of them over time, but as stated the non-stick on the pans is so good that cleanup is very easy. My last minor item is that they are riveted on the inside of the pan so you have a bit of an area on the pan that takes a bit more to ensure you clean properly but again only a very minor observation.
I would recommend these to anyone looking for a new / starter set. However, like all non-stick pans, don't overheat these either, so I recommend that you still need a carbon-steel or cast iron pan for very hot frying for when you do steaks or high temp wok type stir-frying.
High Quality and Perfect for Serious Cooks
Very impressive in terms of both quality and functionality is how I describe this superb set. My wife and I have been using it on a daily basis for several weeks in a wide range of cooking applications and cuisines with excellent results. We cook exclusively on a natural gas cooking range although we note this cookware is also suitable for induction cooking. The set comprises 1 x 26 cm frying pan, 1 x 28 cm frying pan, 1 x 16 cm 1.5 litre saucepan with lid, 1 x 24 cm 5.2 litre saucepan with lid and double handles, and 1 x 38 cm shallow pan with lid and double handles. The saucepans have graduated volume markings and the shallow pan and both frying pans have non stick surfaces. The non stick surfaces incorporate a red 'Thermo Spot' in the centre which turns a dark red when the utensil is pre heated to 'hot' to indicate that it's ready for cooking, after which the temperature can be reduced.
My wife is a very accomplished and experienced cook and she, like me, is very impressed. Our kitchen already has good quality saucepans and pans (e.g. Circulon Commercial and Scanpan) that we used on a daily basis until this set arrived. Every item in the set is solidly constructed in stainless steel with excellent handles and cooking bodies and importantly the handles are rivetted to the cooking bodies. The frying pans and 1.5 lt saucepan can be picked up while cooking without using hand protection. The lids are sturdy and fit very well and are also made of stainless steel. The cooking bodies of every item are solid with the bases having a practical ‘heaviness’ (we really like this feature) that transfers heat evenly and quickly with no ‘hot spots’ and definitely no warping. The heavy bases also have excellent heat retention. The non stick surfaces in the frying pans and shallow pan perform exceptionally well and are so easy to clean. Lesser quality non stick surfaces tend to break down with frequent use over an extended period but I don’t think that will happen with these utensils because the non stick surface seems to be exceptional.
The stainless steel construction of every piece is high quality and it’s easy to keep them looking as good as new. All items can be washed in a dishwasher, but we washed the saucepans both by hand and in the dishwasher. They came up as new either way. The frying pans and shallow pan can also be placed in the dishwasher but we preferred to hand wash them to take best care of the non stick coatings (we also used plastic tongs, egg slices etc that are suitable for use with non stick surfaces to avoid scratching). They were very easy to clean. This set is ideal to complement a beginners set (say someone who already has some cook ware), but for someone wanting a comprehensive set they might want to add an extra saucepan with a lid that would snugly fit one of the frying pans. Finally the set is covered by a 10 year manufacturers guarantee which is not only comforting to a buyer but it's evidence of the manufacturers confidence in the quality and durability of the set. In summary - superb high quality and perfectly suited to serious cooks. Highly recommended.
Tefal is not a new brand for me so I was equally excited to try out their new 5 piece cookware endorsed by Jamie Oliver.
The 5 piece beautifully crafted set consists of 2 Frypans with sizes of 26cm & 28cm. A 16cm/1.5L Saucepan, 24cm/5.2L Stewpot and a 30cm Shallow Pan. Except for the frypans, the others have their own lids but if the frypan needed a lid, the lid from the shallow pan fits perfectly over the 28cm frypan.
Even though they are Stainless Steel Induction cookware they work just as well on an electric stove.
All 5 cookware items give you even heat distribution.
The lids are not clear which obviously means you need to take the lid off to check. It doesn’t worry me to do that though as the lids are easy to hold and cool to touch.
There are graduated markings on the stewpot and saucepan to help with any measurements.
The frypans have the red thermostat cooking temperature indicator which is great because when the red spot turns to a darker red, you know that your temperature has been reached to start cooking. The titanium non stick surface speaks for itself.
So many times I have made a meal on the stove and then I need to keep that warm and I had to just throw it into another corning ware dish but not now. The cookware can go in an oven temperature no higher than 210c for 60 minutes. Perfect.
What I love about this cookware is that there are no sharp edges on any of the cookware. Some of my own cookware I have at the moment have quite sharp edges and don’t ask me how many times I have cut myself on it when washing up.
Riveted stainless steel handles with silicone inserts gives you a much more comfortable grip. Most saucepans I have had in the past have that little screw in the handle which always needs to be tightened but it’s so hard getting a screwdriver in there.
The frypans are great at cooking so many foods. Omelettes come up really nice.
I used the Shallow pan quite a lot cooking up lots of meals. I think it made cooking fun again.
My only flaw with this set is the weight as they are slightly heavier than other saucepans. I know from experience that if you suffer from arthritis in your hands or problems with your arms/shoulders that they are a little heavy when empty them so that once you have cooked some food, it will be just slightly heavier to lift.
All in all though, I am absolutely extremely happy with the consistency of the cooking that I have been doing. The high quality Stainless Steel cookware look very classy on the stove, are easy to clean. I like how I can store the Stewpot inside the Shallow pan and just put the lids over the top.
This superb set has a 10 year guarantee too. I am impressed.
A really great supreme quality set
Firstly I will describe the set and its components. The box claims that it is:
26 cm Frypan
28 cm Frypan
16 cm Saucepan with Lid
24 cm Stewpot with Lid
38 cm Shallow pan with Lid
Personally, I did not find that the measurements of diameter were in agreement with the box - but it may depend on where the measurements are taken, e.g. including handles?
The 38 cm pan, as well as the two frypans, have an advanced Titanium particle non-stick coating and feature Tefals' Thermo-Spot Technology, here the spot darkens and then the darker red rectangles around Tefals' 3 x T symbols disappear when the cooking surface is the correct temperature for cooking. At this point you reduce the heat - and start cooking.
The set comes with a 10 Year Guarantee against manufacturing defects, this does not cover damage or incorrect use. For example it is recommended only to hand-wash and not to use a dishwasher (they are said to be diswasher safe), but my wife and I prefer to use the dishwasher and have not noticed any deterioration of the surfaces.
Now - to the actual cooking, which I totally loved! The Titanium non-stick surface is superb - things simply do NOT stick and if you were inclined - you could almost wipe them with a paper towel and put them away. We don't.
The handles really do stay cool in use on the stovetop, despite the manufacturers warning that they may become hot. Not once in our use did this happen. It would be a different matter if you were to move them from the hob to the oven, at which point a pair of oven mitts would be needed. On this subject - the handles with the silicone inserts have a maximum oven temp of 210C for 60 minutes and the plain stainless handles up to 260C.
The approximately 6 mm thick bases of the pans give brilliant and even heat distribution, meaning that hot spots are eliminated.
To sum up, I am extremely impressed with the cooking performance and apparent quality of the set. Time will tell how long the non-stick surface lasts without serious scratching. My wife is on notice to take it easy with my new pride and joy - and the old pans are destined for recycling.
Great – these pans are going to make me cook like Jamie Oliver in no time. Right?
This set contains
16cm frying pan
28cm frying pan
16cm (1.5Lt) saucepan with lid
24cm (5.2Lt) saucepan with lid
30cm shallow saucepan with lid
Right on the box states…
“These high quality stainless steel pans offer even his distribution and excellent temperature retention. The premium non-stick coating is reinforced with ultra-hard minerals and includes the Tefal iconic Thermo Spot® which lets you know when the pan is hot enough to start cooking. The riveted handles have silicon inserts for extra comfort, while internal measuring marks give increased accuracy when cooking. This suitable for all hobs, including induction, and are dishwasher and oven save up to 210°C.”
We use a gas hob so cannot comment on the ability of induction cooking.
Great – these pans are going to make me cook like Jamie Oliver in no time. Right?
Upon first opening the box and diving in you’ll notice the quality of this stainless steel pan set. The 26cm-frying pan weighs a shade over 1.3kg and the 28cm fry pan just over 1.5kg and that’s before you start adding food to cook! If weight determines quality then you’re on a winner right there. The generous side height makes it harder to slop food out when cooking something like a bolognaise sauce or fried rice.
The handles are cast, branded Jamie Oliver Tefal, and securely riveted to the pans, as you would expect. They feel sure and sturdy in the hand and with added silicon insert on the back, offers enhanced grip comfort. All in the set can go from the gas top to the oven. The silicon inserts can withstand the heat too being rated to a max 210º for 1 hour (up to 260º for the handles without). We’ve never had a set we can do this with and we look forward to trying a dish that you take from the hob and finish in the oven.
We’ve not used pans with Thermo-Spot® technology before so a quick search revealed heating the pan to temp before cooking. We did and our first chicken schnitzels and they came out a little more cooked than we hoped for. As they’re different to our old set, there is a small learning curve to get used to how these pans cook.
Heat is evenly distributed across the cooking surface so there was no juggling cooking over the hot spots for a meal to be ready at the same time for all. The weighty pan base construction make this possible.
The saucepan at 16cm (1.5Lt) is small enough to cook veg for a family of three. If you have a larger family you’d be grabbing for a larger pot. Internal markings on the saucepans make it easy to measure liquids. Pretty nifty and such a simple idea.
The Thermo Spot® can be found on the fry pans and the 30cm shallow pan with lid only as the other pots would be primarily used for boiling I’d guess. I don’t think I’d use this feature all the time unless you’re looking to flash fry a steak.
We’ve also used the pans to make pancakes. This is where you’ll really notice the even heat distribution when cooking 4 pancakes at a time. Colour is even and greasing the pan with a little butter is not an issue. (The non-stick surface doesn’t need greasing but we like pancakes cooked in a little butter). Batches of pancakes produced consistent results.
The handles of the fry pans are warm to touch. With the stew pot and shallow pan these get quite hot so exercise caution when using these as you should. The instructions cover this point but the booklet is so small to read if needed.
The lids are pressed stainless steel, stylish and generous with their deep handgrip. It would have been good to see the lids for the pots be interchangeable to also use on the fry pans. For a risotto we need to change to the 30cm shallow pan for cooking from now on – just a little retraining from what we would normally grab.
Clean up is a breeze with the Titanium non-stick surface doing all the work initially. A quick wipe with a paper towel reveals a clean cooking surface and a hand wash will keep them looking great for years. Just don’t use a whisk or knife on the surface so as not to damage the coating – like most other pans on the market. We never put pans in the dishwasher and prefer to hand wash these items. These are an easy clean we have found – so far.
The fry pan handles nest nicely together on top of one another inside the 30cm shallow pan to minimize storage space. This is a good feature and makes for grabbing the desired pan easier rather then rummaging around a cluttered drawer.
Time will tell if the Thermo Spot® is a gimmick that will fade with future use. Maybe a follow-up review in a few years time will reveal the longevity of this feature.
All in all – a great set that has a timeless styling and will look great in any home from modern to country. Tefal offer a 10-year warranty against manufacturing defects, so they stand behind the quality of this set.
They won’t make us cook like Jamie Oliver but we can at least pretend to be.
As J-O would say "Gorgeous!"
Let me start by saying, I'm not new to the Jamie Oliver Tefal line. The Jamie and Tefal partnership is undoubtedly one of the more prominent and long standing ones - synonymous with quality. I actually still have a very similar set which I purchased about 10 years ago. Although one frying pan died (coating), the saucepans and other non-stick pans are still in daily use. They have already confirmed for me a long time ago, that this is quality cookware. So, having just received this latest 5 component Jamie Oliver kit, let's look at what's changed - and more importantly.. what's for dinner?
Kit contents are
1 x 1.5l saucepan
1 x 5.2l Stewpot
1 x 38cm Shallow Pan (non-stick)
2 x Frying Pans (non-stick; in 26 & 28cm sizes)
From the outset, this is a really well thought out combination if you're looking at replacing your old pots and pans or just starting out. Sure there will be things that you may want as extras, but overall this kind of kit will cater for 80-90% of your cooking needs. If there's any criticism to be found in terms of kit inclusions, it's perhaps that the two frying pans are very similar in size (only a 2cm difference). You don't need a larger pan because you get that in the very large 38cm shallow pan, but a smaller pan would perhaps offered more versatility. None the less, even if you have a large 5 burner hob, you still have more than enough to cook up a feast. Three of the pans also come with lids and the only other criticism here is that due to the mixed sizes, you don't actually have a lid which fits either frying pan.
In terms of overall quality, this is a really solid set. Handles are riveted (not welded) and come with silicone inserts on all pans. There' also measurement graduations laser engraved on the inside of the pots, which is a nice touch. The pots also have a lovely rounded inner base contour which may seem innocuous to most, but this kind of design makes it easier to cook since things don't get mashed into the corners of the pan base and wall.
I've had people ask me, why spend all your hard earned on the likes of Jamie Oliver when you can get similar looking silvery shiny pots or pans at your local discount store or supermarket at a fraction of the cost. Like most things, you get what you pay for, right? OK, so then let's look at why you may need to pay a little more to get that quality. in my view there are two significant aspects you need to consider when it comes to cookware:
1) A good solid base. Quality cookware will have a proper solid base to ensure even heat distribution. The base will also determine whether your cookware is induction compatible or not. Look at a cheap pan and you'll see that they are usually the thickness of a soup tin. They will overheat as a result, discolor the metal and you'll get hot spots to burn your spuds. Not so with the Jamie Oliver set - the bases are not only induction suitable, but have an overall 1cm base thickness (across the range), providing very even heat distribution. Pukka!
2) Quality non-stick coating. Just about everything is non-stick these days. Whether you've been fooled into stone ware, ceramic or the latest fad on TV, they all do the same thing but what people don't consider is how the coating is actually bonded to the metal underneath. The cheap stuff will never last, because no matter how gentle you are with your cooking implements, the coating will naturally want to run for the hills each time you crank up the heat. Believe me, no matter what brand you buy - heat will naturally want to separate your non stick from your cookware. The main reason is that different materials expand at different rates. If you have a weak bond (i.e. cheap pans), that separation will occur much more easily and quickly. The better quality non-stick will have far better bonding tech, plus the thicker metals will help prevent excessive or uneven heat expansion. Tefal definitely has an enviable reputation in terms of non-stick. Their technology is second to none in my view. The quality of the materials in this set will definitely outlast some others and keep up with more expensive brands. That's not to say you won't get the occasional dud or failure. Once a coating starts to peel, that's usually the end of it. Luckily, the Jamie Oliver line provides a 10 year guarantee.
In summary there is nothing to find fault with in this cook set. If you are passionate about food and cooking, you will enjoy the Jamie Oliver Premium Stainless Steel cookware immensely for a long time to come. Well done Jamie, uhm.. I meant Tefal, .. Mrs Oliver .. ah heck, doesn't matter - five out of five.
Beautiful set but could be improved
I had high expectations of this five piece set bearing the name of the famous chef Jamie Oliver.
Just removing the set from its attractive and secure packaging was a pleasant experience. I wonder how much creative thought must have been given just to design the packaging itself. The box revealed highly attractive, beautifully crafted, five piece set consisting of two frying pans (26 and 28cm respectively) 16cm/1.5l Saucepan with lid, 24cm/5.2l Stewpot with lid and 30cm Pot Roast with lid. The set comes with a multilingual manual printed in tiny print which older people will have a great difficulty reading. Fortunately it is not too long.
The very thing apart from shiny stainless steel you notice, is the sheer weight particularly of the frying pans. That, of course, suggests quality material used in their manufacture. The premium titanium non-stick coating ensures not only trouble free frying but also easy washing without scratching the surface. The pans also feature red thermostat cooking temperature indicator which lights up when the pan reaches the optimal temperature. This is a highly desirable feature which worked well on our gas stove. Another welcome feature are riveted handles. No more loose screws! The handles are very long to ensure well balanced pans (storage though might be a problem in some kitchen drawers.) Therefore extra care should be taken in households with small children to prevent scolding or other accidents. Always turn the handles away from the reach of children. The handles are well insulated so even the hot pan did not pose any problems as far as touching the handles with bare hands. Having said that, cooking ability was excellent. The only problem with the pans is their sheer weight which would make them probably unsuitable for people with arthritis. Overall though, the pans are top product. Jamie Oliver would be happy to use them, I am sure.
Now, what about the two pots and a saucepan? The innovative and welcome feature are the gradual markings inside the pots and the pan for easy measuring. Needless to say that the saucepan and the pots are very attractive, also with riveted handles. However, there are couple of shortcomings which Tefal should look at and consider for improving in future productions.
First of all, the handles on the pans get very hot as the insulation is insufficient. One has to use the gloves to cary the pans. Yet our very old and ugly pans have handles that are so well insulated that you can manipulate the pans with bare hands. Strangely, this problem is not applicable to the lid handles which do not get that hot! The other shortcoming are the lids on all three items for they are solid and not glass as is the case in so many other cookware. Thus you cannot see inside without lifting the lids!
Again washing the pots was very easy. It needs to be said that the set is designed for induction tops. That, however does not preclude it from being used on gas or electric stoves.
The RRP of this very well manufactured and extremely elegant set is $899. That is probably not that cheep. But there are always specials on the Internet and readers would be well advised to shop around. The warranty is 10 years against manufacturing defects.
Overal, the set oozes quality and would be be welcome addition to any kitchen. It is, as just about anything these days, manufactured in China, but obviously the quality controls are in place thus ensuring flawless cookware. And, most important, it does its job exceedingly well.
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