One of the most awesome parts of being a kitchenware designer at Meyer is getting to learn and fall in love with kitchen staples that have a special place in different cultures across the globe. Even though we may not be able to step onto a plane to explore them right now, you can still bring the world to your home kitchen. Check out our favourite pieces of cookware from around the world.
Japanese Omelette Pan
Supple, savory Japanese omelette rolls, or tamagoyaki in Japanese, are simply divine. These little rolls of sunshine are cooked, layer by layer in a rectangular pan we call the Japanese Omelette Pan. They’re lovely for breakfast with a simple bowl of rice and a bit of miso soup.
It’s a wok! It’s a skillet! It’s kind of both!
Chef’s pans are a wonderful hybrid of east and west. You can do stir-fried veggies, chili con carne, green curry, or even a week’s worth of pasta sauce in one of these puppies. The secret of this shape is that it gives you the best of both worlds — frying and stewing.
For real, if we were to be locked inside a kitchen with only one pan, it’d be a chef’s pan.
A sauteuse has deep, straight sidewalls and two side handles. It’s made for dishes that start on the stovetop and get finished in the oven.
What we love about the sauteuse is, first of all, how gosh darn cute they are. The two side handles make them charming enough to serve from at the dinner table, and make them much easier to stick into an oven — no pesky stick handle to get in the way! Secondly, they have a wide cooking surface — perfect for browning chicken thighs, steaks, or fondant potatoes. 🤤
A must-have bit of kit in any Indian kitchen, the kadai is like a small wok. Extremely versatile, it can be used for stir-fried and simmered dishes, like bhindi masala (stir-fried okra) or kadai chicken.
Where this little guy really shines is in deep-frying. The kadai is highly similar to a Japanese tempura pan, used for those glorious dishes — tonkatsu (pork cutlet), kara-age (fried chicken), ebi-fry (shrimp) 😻. It is the perfect shape for small-batch deep-frying — it uses less oil, all the food bits fall towards the centre for easy removal, and the flared shape helps contain oil splatters.
The saucier, a favourite among chef-types and the food nerd Illuminati, is like the more talented big sister to the saucepan. Similar, but slightly larger, with a much more versatile, rounded shape, it lets you whisk together sauces, small-batch deep-fry, stir-fry side dishes, and more.
It’s the perfect companion for that French classic: steak with red wine sauce. Do your steak in our searing pan, and a rich Bordelaise red wine sauce in our lovely little saucier.
Ah, the wok. You may think that woks are just for stir-frying. Perish the thought! In China, you’ll find many families that make entire multi-course meals with just one wok, pretty much every day. A champ for deep-frying, boiling, simmering, and stir-frying, one wok will bring you a long way.
Wok cooking is largely based on one brilliant principle — cut your food into bite-sized pieces, cook them rapidly on high heat (ain’t nobody got time!) till they’re perfectly cooked through and flavourful, and enjoy your food without having to spend half your meal sawing into large, overcooked slabs of flesh.
One of the juiciest secrets we’ve discovered about wok cooking is how Chinese restaurants get their stir-fried meats so silky and tender. It’s called velveting, and it’s used to make even tough cuts of meat fantastically succulent. Give it a try and let us know what you think!
Casserole / Dutch Oven
Listen up kids, I’m about to tell you how to avoid sad, dry meats in stews. To do it, you’ll need a casserole or dutch oven and an oven. A stockpot just won’t do!
Fact 1: Meat proteins overheat and dry out at around 170°F/77°C.
Fact 2: If you simmer a stew on the stovetop, all the food in there is reaching 212°F/100°C — the temperature of boiling water.
Fact 3: In the oven, you can maintain a constant temperature lower than the boiling point, allowing you to cook your meats through without drying them out.
In short, the secret to having juicy, tender meat in any kind of stew is to brown your meat on the stovetop to build flavour and then finish the dish “low and slow” in the oven.
We hope you feel inspired to try some of these fantastic cookware gems from around the world. Till next time!