Woks are the traditional pan used to make stir fry and other Asian dishes. They are known for their large, slanted sides, small flat middle, and dual handles. Non-stick is a must so that low fat cooking is achieved. Learn how an enameled cast iron wok meets the non-stick requirement as well as other must-have characteristics to cook veggies and meat perfectly.
Woks can be made of many different materials. Aluminum and anodized steel are popular ones. Recently, enameled cast iron woks emerged on the cookware market. As you may know, cast iron is extremely durable. It does not bend or warp under extreme temperatures (of which woks are known for being exposed to). Also, the enameled finish does not scratch easily. All have dual handles, and some have loop handles extending under the whole wok. This ensures safe transport from stove to tabletop to sink.
As mentioned earlier, woks need to be non-stick so that very little cooking oil is needed. An enameled cast iron wok is not only non-stick, but the enamel finish is scratch resistent. No seasoning is required, which is what regular cast iron needs to be non-stick. Even though you are using very little oil or butter to cook with, the enamel coating makes sure your chicken, beef, veggies, etc. do not burn or stick. These are all the makings of a great stir-fry.
A wok is normally used at higher than normal temperatures. This is to sear the meat and veggies and seal in their vitamins and nutrients. Just as important to withstanding high heat, is even distribution of that heat. Woks are meant to be moved around so as to toss food. If it has hot spots, then you may have to keep the food stationary (boring) to make sure it is getting the heat it needs to cook properly. Enameled cast iron woks distribute heat perfectly even. No worrying about hot or cold spots, so toss away!
Stir-fries and other Asian dishes calling for the use of a wok are one of the healthiest types of cuisine out there. Enameled cast iron woks help keep these dishes healthy because they are durable (even in the handles), non-stick (little to no oil needed), able to handle high heat for perfect searing as well as even heat for faster cooking. After hearing all these benefits, your kitchen would not be complete without an enameled cast iron wok in the cabinet.
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