Sunday, January 27, 2008

Latest bargain worth the $

I have been watching ebay for 3 months - more specifically watching for a good quality anodized non-stick frying pan that I would consider a bargain. I finally got one and I'm in love! I had set out to buy a new stove-top griddle last October - we use ours daily and they tend to wear out at the rate of about 1 per 12-16 months. So, daughter, Fallan, being the mini-Paula Deen that she is, insisted I check out some better brands than those I have always bought at Wally-World. OK, so to humor her I do some searching - and whaddyaknow? - found a Calphalon griddle on Amazon for less than I normally pay for the lower-end brands. Bought it and we all were amazed at the obvious differences in quality - it's heavier, better balanced with the handle, and the nonstick surface is just beautiful. Question is, will it last any better? Not that it really matters since I got it for such a great price, but one would hope anyway. So, we are all so impressed that we start thinking it would be good to get a similar frying pan/skillet. Not so simple to find! Seems that the frying pans are not to be had for such a low price anywhere - including ebay! And of course, I'm not considering a nice little 8" or even 10" pan - I've got my heart set on a 12". So I search - I watch - I wait. I wait. I wait. Good grief! Finally one sells within the $ range I had set for myself - but I failed to get a bid in on it. So back to waiting - but then I finally made my move and won the skillet of my dreams - a mere 3 months after we decided we "needed" it. No complaints though - this baby was worth the wait! It is just as fabulous as the griddle and will hold enough to cook when all the kids come to visit. Paid $20 for the griddle and $27 for the skillet - best I can tell the griddle should retail for around $40 and the skillet for about $90.

I've been "testing" the new pan - starting with a wonderful lunchtime stir-fry of peppers, squash, garlic, mushrooms and raw baby spinach yesterday, and today, a breakfast that was
tasty, healthy and filling. While I was cooking 2 servings of old-fashioned oats in a regular old 2 qt pan (that will be next to be replaced I think!), in the new skillet I melted butter and added chopped pecans and unpeeled granny-smith apple slices. I cooked those for a bit then added some cinnamon and apple-pie spice and frozen cranberries (bought in December in the fresh produce section - just washed, dried, put in a ziplock and froze for later), cooked a bit more, then added the cooked oatmeal and a handful of extra-fiber All-Bran cereal. Finished with a 1/2 cup of honey from my brother's bee operation and a little Splenda sweetener. Mmmmm - I like to pour just a little 2% milk on mine and eat while it's good and warm.

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