Why waste your money on expensive cookware?

We have thousands of cookware shops in Australia. They sell every gadget and the most ridiculously overpriced cookware.

I say it’s ridiculous because it doesn’t cook any better, nor does it last longer. Some of the cookware has a lifetime guarantee and I’m always puzzled by that claim. What does that mean?

And there are caveats to the guarantee. You have to use the cookware for the purposes for which it was intended.

I guess that means cooking rather than digging for iron ore. And I do suspect that in about ten years’ time you would have difficulty finding the manufacturer of said cookware to return it. They also want it to be posted and the cost of that postage would be prohibitive. That’s if you can unearth the receipt.

In other words, the cookware lasts for as long as it lasts and not any longer. Can’t argue with that existential concept.

If you read the fine print, you should expect the saucepan to show scratches. This will look bad but will not affect your cooking results. You can machine wash the cookware but it’s better not to because it may spoil its appearance.

Although the cookware has been tested in laboratories by a million jackhammers drilling the amazing bullet-proof surface of the pan, it is suggested that you stir your cooking with a plastic or wooden utensil.

All this in spite of a rather pretentious and misleading name like Swiss Diamond which gives the impression of a very resilient and indestructible surface. Not true. I know because I invested in the brand. I use the term “invested” since it cost a fortune.

I was informed at the time that Swiss Diamond never go on sale, but they were 40% discounted at some stores last week. So “Never” must mean the same as “Lifetime Guarantee.”

I’m also the gullible owner of some Circulon cookware. This one scratches, sticks and has grooves which are hard to clean. Ironically, there is a big ad campaign on TV at the moment praising this brand’s ease of use. I scoff somewhat bitterly at its claims.

Anolon was no better but I managed to return it because it warped. I was in one of those “I’m fed up and I’m not taking it any more” moods.

As for cast iron cookware, it’s good for casseroles, but who can lift the ruddy things? If you really want a physical workout try to pick up some Staub cookware. Now if you dropped that on the floor it would result in a crater and the Staub cookware would emerge in China.

The astute reader of this blog might have worked out that I’m fed up with falling for the hype. Cookware is cookware and you are better off buying a brand new pan every year at $29.95 as I have done recently and in ten years you will still be ahead financially. The pan will be lighter. You can machine wash it or not. If it scratches you don’t mourn the damage to its perfect surface.

And believe me, life’s too short to be fooled by promises of everlasting service or surface (as the case may be).

I wonder how long my new penny-wise attitude will last? Probably for as long those guarantees, I guess.


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