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How to pick the perfect pot

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BACK in the day, you bought pots in sets, or so it seemed to me until I consulted chef Andrew Radford, founder of Timberyard in Edinburgh. Chefs select different pots and pans for different tasks, he explained. No single brand does everything well. This was revelatory for me, and liberating. A homogeneous batterie de cuisine is for prettying up the kitchen pictures in estate agents’ brochures. Serious cooks tailor their equipment to a specific purpose.

Andrew’s advice was to treat each pot and pan you use as an investment item. Enduring, well-designed cooking kit is generally pretty expensive, so keep your collection lean, build it up gradually, and go for the best you can afford at the time. Cheap fixes are a waste of time and ultimately money, he warned. Plastic handles, for instance, are a no-no: it’s only a matter of time until they they break off. Choose steel handles instead. Apart from anything they give you the option of starting off something on the hob – a thick fish like cod or duck breast, for instance, then........

© Herald Scotland