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Old 01-20-2013, 09:48 PM   #1
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Le Creuset owners, opinion needed

So the outlet mall now has a Le Creuset outlet. Nick and I went in and a 6 3/4 oval 2nd was $130. From what I recall that's an awesome price. We were ready to buy. Then the salesperson told me that the unit can not be heated dry. So I can't sear my meats in the pan? I'm a little confused because that's what the point of it all was.

So what do you do with your Dutch oven, and do you put liquid in the bottom before you heat it up? Do you sear in it?

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Old 01-20-2013, 09:57 PM   #2
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Re: Le Creuset owners, opinion needed

A little oil goes down first, but I do sear in it. However, I never put enameled cast iron above a medium heat. So it does take a while to get it to a "searing" temperature.
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Old 01-20-2013, 10:19 PM   #3
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Awesome price.


I sear mostly dry. Teeny sheen of butter, OO, or coconut oil. No issues. I use mine daily and have for years. Some of mine my mom used before me for decades.
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Old 01-20-2013, 10:21 PM   #4
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Just read the above PP. I also never go above medium heat. It conducts so well and is so even that I just let it heat for an extra minute and then go for it.
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Old 01-21-2013, 05:49 AM   #5
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Re: Le Creuset owners, opinion needed

You absolutely can heat the pan dry. I use only LC for all of my cooking. I usually put the empty pan on the stove and turn it on before I do anything else. It doesn't matter if I'm adding water to boil pasta or going to put something into it to sear without oil...you definitely can heat your pan as you wish (but as another poster mentioned not on high heats).
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Old 01-21-2013, 06:57 AM   #6
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Thanks very much. I needed this info. Now we just need to get back there and pick purple or yellow. Hard choice.
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Old 01-21-2013, 07:18 AM   #7
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I know you decided, but my advice is to get a quality stainless pan like All-Clad for searing and use LeCreuset for other cooking. I have both and the searing performance is just so superior on stainless. If you want to keep the meat drippings/scrapings for longer cooking, you can always deglaze the pan and pour it into the Dutch oven.
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Old 01-21-2013, 05:40 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Leiiki
I know you decided, but my advice is to get a quality stainless pan like All-Clad for searing and use LeCreuset for other cooking. I have both and the searing performance is just so superior on stainless. If you want to keep the meat drippings/scrapings for longer cooking, you can always deglaze the pan and pour it into the Dutch oven.
Well see this is what I don't understand. I have a big All-Clad pan that I use to sear things with and then I transfer whatever it is to a slow cooker. The Dutch oven was supposed to short circuit that loop and make cleaning easier. I'm really wondering if I even need a Dutch oven. Arg.
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Old 01-21-2013, 06:13 PM   #9
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Re: Le Creuset owners, opinion needed

Quote:
Originally Posted by danner View Post
Well see this is what I don't understand. I have a big All-Clad pan that I use to sear things with and then I transfer whatever it is to a slow cooker. The Dutch oven was supposed to short circuit that loop and make cleaning easier. I'm really wondering if I even need a Dutch oven. Arg.
I really don't see a huge difference in stainless versus a GOOD dutch oven, because the point is that it conducts heat very well, and very evenly. I have a terrible Cuisinart dutch oven that was gifted to me in a gift exchange thing in college, and it's just not made well. Le Creuset is amazing and does what it's supposed to do with conduction. I don't think you will be disappointed.

Get yellow. It's so happy.
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Old 01-21-2013, 08:51 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Hungry Caterpillar

I really don't see a huge difference in stainless versus a GOOD dutch oven, because the point is that it conducts heat very well, and very evenly. I have a terrible Cuisinart dutch oven that was gifted to me in a gift exchange thing in college, and it's just not made well. Le Creuset is amazing and does what it's supposed to do with conduction. I don't think you will be disappointed.

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I think the difference is the heat level mentioned earlier in the thread - for a true sear, you want high heat. I am definitely a lover of my LC cookware, but I would never put one on High the way I do with my All-Clad. Browning properly requires a minimum 300 degree surface, optimally around 500. That gets you the intense flavor that carries the meat through slow-cooking.
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