Your Questions Answered: Metal utensils on cookware, grain mills, food storage, & freezer meals
Based on your review, plus many other favorable reviews of the Cuisinart MultiClad Pro cookware, I purchased a set. My question is: Is it safe to use metal utensils with this set? I have used pro-quality stainless steel utensils with my Belgique for years, and those pots and pans still look and perform great. Why does Cuisinart only recommend plastic, nylon or wooden utensils with this cookware set if it's supposed to rival All-Clad? Is it just so the cookware will continue to look brand new?
Yes, it is safe to use metal utensils on the Cuisinart MultiClad Pro cookware! Metal utensils are not harmful to the cookware's performance, but Joshua and I made the decision to only use wooden, nylon, or silicone utensils on our cookware to keep it looking like-new with no scratches (however small they may be)! :)
From my Cuisinart Use and Care Guide that came with our cookware:
What about metal utensils?
We recommend using plastic or wooden utensils with your Cuisinart MultiClad Pro Stainless Cookware. You may prefer using metal utensils. These may scratch the cooking surface, but will in no way impair the performance of your Cuisinart MultiClad Pro Stainless Cookware.
More info from the guide: DO NOT use steel wool or metal pads for cleaning. Using a hand mixer with metal beaters is fine, but may leave scratches like using metal utensils will. Stacking pans or crowding in the cupboards can also cause scratches (again, only cosmetic).
I saw on here a few times about a grain mill and homemade bread making. I am interested in a grain mill. Can you share your wonderful expertise?
I have used this homemade wheat bread recipe extensively and there are a lot of info and notes in that recipe! :) We have a WonderMill grain mill and have been very satisfied with it. This post has more grain mill information, from when we were researching and deciding what to purchase.
As you will read, there are different kinds of grain mills. The WonderMill is not an emergency-preparedness item, as it uses electricity, but it is one of the top two micronizer/impact mills (the other one being the NutriMill).
This post answers the question, "How do I get started with whole grain flours?!" and lists some considerations and tips for beginners (baking or milling at home). Let me know if you have any more specific questions on this topic! :)
When you buy food in such large bulk, how do you store it?
I like to use glass jars for food storage (in my cupboards) and plastic buckets for storing larger quantities (these sit on the floor in my dining area and bedroom!). The buckets were obtained at grocery store delis (see that link for more info).
Really, I think the key to buying in bulk is to buy things that are nutritious and that we like to eat. It is amazing how quickly the food disappears when it's something we all like and eat a lot. :)
I'm new at this freezing meals for dinners later but I love the idea so I'm going to try it. When you freeze your dinners are they already cooked or just made up and then when you want them cook them? All the ones I've read about sound like they are going to be really great!!
Most of the freezer dinners I've liked best were assembled and then frozen (not baked first). I have then baked them after thawing, or baked them frozen at a lower temperature (300 degrees or so) for a much longer time (a couple hours perhaps).
In my post about freezer meals, I note after each recipe link whether I had frozen it baked or unbaked. :)