Is the Staub Perfect Pan really perfect? Its claim to perfection is thanks to its supposed versatility. But really, its just a cast iron wok with a few tweaks. However, unlike a traditional wok, it is thick and heavy with a beautiful enamel coating. The bottom is more flat for better heat conductivity and searing capability. Its wide flaring top also means that you can stir and move food with ease. But is this really a perfect pan? This review will take a closer look at the design and features of Staub’s Perfect Pan.
Staub Perfect Pan Review Quick Summary
|Categories||Staub Perfect Pan|
|Compatibility||Gas, Electric, Halogen, Glass Top, Induction|
|Colors||Range of Color|
|Brand Awareness||World Famous|
|Country of Manufacturer||France|
|Thoughts||Staub Perfect Pan is far from perfect. It is great as a Wok, but not a substitute for a traditional skillet. For a more versatile cookware, Staub Braiser would be a better choice. It has a cast iron lid that wont shatter like glass.|
|Reviewed Cookware||Staub Perfect Pan|
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History of Staub
Staub was founded by Francis Staub in 1974. In the early stages of the company, they would carve the molds out of wood. They used colors that were dark and vibrant, a stark difference from Le Creuset. As time went on, they became one of the leading competitors to Le Creuset. In 2008, they were acquired by Zwilling, a cutlery company. Today, Staub remains independently operated and they are still one of the leading producers of enamel cast iron cookware.
Staub Perfect Pan Design
This section will take a closer look at the design and features of Staub Perfect Pan. We will go over handle, shape and construction.
The handle uses a two loop handle. Very similar to how traditional woks are made. However, the pan is not designed to be toss around. To move food around, you have to use a spatula. Considering how heavy the Perfect pan is, I doubt that you will be able to toss food by the handle.
In terms of ergonomic, it is wide and allows for an easy grip. It can accommodate your hand even with a glove on. One bad thing about the handle is that it will get screaming hot. Always take care when cooking on the stove or using it in the oven. Another benefit of the two loop design is that carrying it around is easy. Moving pots with only one loop handle is difficult.
There are issues with the two loop handle, they arent very agile. Longer handles give you more reach and leverage. Moving it around on the stove is a lot easier. With only loop handles, you have to really reach in. However, if you let it stay stationary most of the time, it shouldn’t be an issue.
The shape of this pan is what makes it unique. It resembles that of a wok. Unfortunately, that is where most of the problem lies. The base of this wok is smaller than a standard skillet. As a result, you have less room to sear food. Add too much food and they will start steaming instead of frying. You can counteract this by cooking it in smaller batches, however, this increases overall cooking time.
What I like about this design is that they rim diameter of the pan is wide. This is great for stirring food and coating food in sauces. In your standard pan food will overflow and drop out.
In terms of braising, I think this is a horrible choice to make. The conical shape of the base will cause the liquid to pool on the bottom. The end result will be uneven cooking. You can use it for steaming though.
Cast Iron and Heat Retention
This is where Staub Perfect Pan really shines. The cast iron construction means that once it gets hot, it stays hot. This means that it can sear food than a Wok. Traditional wok uses a very thin gauge of steel. While it might be good for a quick sear, once it cools down, it wont get back to temperature. Our home range simply cant heat it up well enough. To get around this, a thick and heavy cast iron wok is a good workaround.
Another benefit to this design is that you can use it as a serving tray. It will stay hot on the dinning table.
Interesting enough, it comes with a wire rack. These rack are usually use after you deep fry food. You need air out fried food or else the crust will become soggy. While its neat, its too small and gets in the way. I recommend that you use a separate tray to cool it. Not only that, I bet that you will lose it after a few month.
For some reason, they used a glass lid. While most people like that you can look in, once it starts steaming, it becomes useless. Not only that, the fragile nature of glass makes it bad choice. If you manage to hit it wrong or subject it to thermal shock, it can shatter. A heavy cast iron lid would have been a better choice. It traps in heat better and keeps steam from escaping. A glass lid is pretty poor choice in my opinion.
Staub Perfect Pan Enamel and Durability
The colors of Staub cookware is what makes it so great. It is perfect for showing your guest and serving. The durability of their enamel is also one of the best in the industry. While its not impervious to chipping, it is still a lot better than the Chinese made one. The colors are also deep and vibrant.
Sticking is a major problem in this pan. Since its not bare cast iron, it cannot develop the same seasoning. While you can get away with stir frys that uses a lot of liquid, things like noodles are horrible. Unless you do it right, everything will get ruined. I recommend a nonstick pan if you want to stir fry noodle.
Staub Perfect Pan Thoughts
While this isnt the perfect pan, I would say that its a very good wok. Traditional wok are thin and light. You need a high heat btu just to use it properly. The heat output of our home kitchen is simply too weak. A heavy cast iron construction can work around this. If you are looking for a wok, then the Staub Perfect pan is a great choice. The only thing that I do not like is the glass lid and the sticking.
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