Prepare your bladder for imminent release! You are about to get a quick lesson in house in the astounding number of different pieces of kitchen equipment available for grilling and frying your favorite foods. Take a look at the pans you use for frying or grilling food and likely you will see that they are not in particularly great shape. Great shape they are not in!
Would you use the rough hand soap in the garage to wash your baby’s cute little butt? Maybe if you were Cletus the Slack-Jawed Yokel. Are you are a slack-jawed yokel? Well, are you? I’m asking a question here. No, you are not. Taking that rough garage soap used for cleaning oil from beneath your fingernails would not be something you would use to cleanse your baby’s behind so why on earth are you using a skillet to cook Asian food when a wok was designed specifically for that purpose?
Why should buy a wok for cooking vegetables, chicken chunks and noodles instead of using your perfectly fine skillet? Because woks are constructed for the purpose of rapid movement on your cooktop. The Chinese wok is also made of material that can withstand very high heat that other cookware may not handle with such perspicacity.
You may already own a heavy iron skillet. The heavy iron skillet is the Lou Gehrig of kitchen cookware (I am of the firm opinion that when you vote to go on strike, you agree to give up any records you are currently chasing, therefore I do not buy into the crapload of an argument that Lou Gehrig’s consecutive games played record was eclipsed by Cal Ripken, Jr. The moment Ripken voted to go on strike-a strike I agree with, by the way-his record should have ended. Nuff said.) Lou Gehrig is the iron skillet of baseball; both put in a lifetime of worth. If you don’t already own an iron skillet, you should since it can go from the stovetop to the oven with little to no problems. Where the iron skillet fails is in its slow cooking time. Stay away from this piece of kitchen cookware any time you are planning to fry something that needs to be cooked quickly. Otherwise, prepare for scorched and veritably indigestible sauces.
If you are heavily into sautéing fish, you really should invest in an oval frying pan. The oval shape is much better than a perfectly round shape for things like sautéing and browning. Just make sure to season your oval frying pan with oil and a pinch of salt before laying it upon the stove the first time. Wipe away with a paper towel before you sauté your first fish.
Surely you never make an omelet inside a wok or with your cast iron skillet! Surely this is not something you have done. The omelet is one of the few types of foods that really does make the purchase of a special pan worthwhile. As long as you make omelets often, that is. Look for a flat, highly polished aluminum pan if you want to make an omelet that makes the omelets at the IHOP, Waffle House or Denny’s look like it was made by a flatulent orangutan fresh from a Tea Party rally.
Let’s get back to fish. Personally, I’ve got little use for food that spends its ENTIRE LIFE inside its own toilet, but that’s just me. Cast iron does come in handy for cooking fish, just not sautéing fish. Get yourself what is known as a cast iron fish grill. Take your fish and give it a good Zorro-style slashing on both sides or else your fish will curl up like a pork chop fried by a beginner.