I did some research on what makes a good wok and then entered my criteria. From there I chose the 14" Professional Carbon Steel 7-Piece Wok Set by Concept Housewares. During my research, I found that cast iron seems to make the best woks, but they are WAY out of my price range at this time. I wanted a wok that wasn't non-stick. I despise non-stick and love my cast iron pans. This wok does require a few layers of pre-seasoning before the first use and careful care and seasoning after each use. But since I use mostly cast iron cookware I'm used to this kind of care already.
I got my order very quickly and couldn't wait to use my wok, but I still had lots of unpacking to do so it took me a few days to actually make anything. I was a little disappointed when I pulled it out of the box because it seemed a bit flimsy, but I think that's the point of carbon steel, light yet sturdy. Because of the light weight I didn't even need to use the helper handle. I had made sure to order a wok with a helper handle because I wasn't sure how heavy it would be.
I had read some reviews on the website that this product was prone to rusting, but I also read a review warning people not to soak their wok, especially in soapy hot water. It needs to be treated like cast iron; no soap, scrub gently, and season with lots of oil. It will change colors with use. After just one use the bottom 1/3 is already getting a nice seasoning, I can't wait until the whole thing is well seasoned.
In my opinion, you can't review cookware properly without sharing a recipe and pictures. So here is what I made the other day...
Are any of you familiar with the Pioneer Woman's Tasty Kitchen? It's a great recipe sharing website where amateur and professional cooks alike share recipes and make new friends. I only use it occasionally, but if I'm looking for a new recipe I usually look there first. I found this recipe several months ago and it has become a regular on my menu, but there was a problem. I didn't have a large enough pan and I would always end up with half the stir fry on the stove top. This time, with the wok, I had plenty of room and didn't spill anything. :)
Cut and cook chicken. I used my only "non-stick" pan while I was pre-seasoning my wok.
Gather my ingredients.
After sauteing the onions and adding the chicken I pushed it to the side to scramble the eggs.
The rice was a little chunky from being in the fridge all day. I broke up the pieces and continued to mix ingredients. As you can see everything fit very well in the wok with room to stir and not make a mess.
Served with a Thai coconut soup. Yum! Yum!
My final thoughts: This wok is a great addition to my kitchen! It has a great price point and as long as I continue to treat it well I see it only getting better with age. I can't wait for many more stir frys and am interested to try the bamboo steamer rack and other accessories.
Thank you to Sean and CSN Stores for allowing me to review this product. I had fun and look forward to more reviews and hopefully some giveaways in the future!