High-heat cooking is popular for many reasons. Not only is it faster than cooking at lower temperature points, but also it provides that ideal “browned” or “seared” coloration that is often associated with delicious dishes. Moreover, cooking over high temperatures can impart a new flavor even to familiar meals.
As with all cooking techniques, there is an art to high-heat cooking. Get the art wrong, and you’ll end up with a dish that’s burned on the outside and raw on the inside. When things go right, you’ll have a flavor experience that you’re not likely to forget.
High-heat cooking may be referred to by many different terms. When a recipe directs the cook to “brown,” “saute,” “panfry,” “sear” or “stir fry” a dish, this implies cooking with high heat. Just as using the correct oil is essential, so is using the right pan.
Not every pan is built to withstand high-heat cooking. Accordingly, it pays to know your materials and how well they perform. Using the wrong pan can not only ruin what you’re cooking, but also destroy your pans.