Signature Dish: Cookware from around the World
One of the things that makes travel so amazing, is getting the opportunity to experience the local cuisine of wherever it is that you’re visiting. Every country has its own delicacies that offer truly unique taste experiences, and these sensations get deeply entangled with your memories of the trip. Because of this, it’s only natural that you would want to replicate these in the comfort of your own home, but this often requires specific cookware, far removed from what we’re used to, and from what you’re used to having to clean. We’re going to take a look at a few different signature ‘dishes’- some you might recognize, and some you might not have heard of – and where they’re from, what they’re used for, and how they can be cleaned!
The wok is a type of pan that originated in China, although is now very common all across the world. It’s most distinguishing feature is its shape, as it has a rounded bottom. The wok can be used for lots of different cooking methods, but is best known for its use in stir-frying, as the gently rounded sides and bottom make it easy to flip and move the food quickly, to ensure an even cook. Cast iron woks should be cleaned with a special wok-brush made of bamboo, but the majority of woks in homes outside of China are made of stainless-steel. These can be placed in the dishwasher, on the bottom shelf. As they are quite large, it’s important to ensure that they don’t block any of the spray arms!
Casserole is often used as the name of the food, but it is in fact the name of the dish, which whatever is cooked in it is named after. You might be surprised to hear that the casserole is a relatively modern invention. Although it has its roots in the late 19th century, casserole as we know it today – one dish family cooking – only really became a staple in the 20th century, mostly due to the kings of convenience, the USA. Newly introduced materials, such as lightweight metals and low-thermal-expansion glass meant that this easy way of cooking was available to everyone. Because of how they are used, casseroles often end up with food baked on, but this shouldn’t be a problem for your dishwasher if used with Finish Shine and Protect which actually does the job of a pre-soak.
Tagine is another food that takes its name from the dish it’s served in, and the two are often confused. These are pots made entirely of natural clay, and consist of two parts: a flat based dish with low sides, and a tall cone shaped lid that sits on the base during cooking. The shape of the lid is designed to return all evaporated liquids back to the base. Although these were originally meant to be cooked on hot charcoals, they can also be used in conventional ovens, or even on the hob. Despite their awkward shape, if the tagine is glazed then it should be fine for the dishwasher, although it’s always best to check with the manufacturer.
Not everyone will have heard of a caquelon, although most people will have heard of what is cooked in it: fondue. Despite having been seen as a bit of a gauche throwback to the 1970s, fondue is having somewhat of a resurgence in popularity recently. This dish is claimed by France and Italy, but is most often thought of in relation to Switzerland, where it is inextricably associated with decadent apres-ski luxury. The caquelon itself is the ceramic pot, with a thick base as it is designed to be kept over constant heat, but without letting the cheese within burn. Despite this, there will most likely be a wonderful layer of cheese stuck to the bottom, so make sure you take this out to share before you put the pot in the dishwasher.
Pay close attention to any care labels on specific products, but do continue on your culinary travels in safe knowledge that with Finish, the best detergent, dishwashing holds no more challenges than your standard plates and saucers.
Every Dish. Every Time.
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