I bought my first piece of Le Creuset in 1990 at an outlet mall in Boaz, Alabama while we were traveling to Huntsville so our sons could visit the NASA Space Museum. Indeed, it was my first visit to an outlet mall, period. Forget all the clothes, I made a bea line to Le Creuset.. It was like I'd walked into Fort Knox and could walk out with a bar of gold bullion. A bit later, I met my husband and sons with my modest purchase, a two cup saucier with a pouring spout. My husband scoffed at what I'd paid for a "pot" as he put it. Even at a discounted price it seemed ridiculously expensive to him. For me, it was a new chapter and inspiration in my culinary life. It was French and superior to anything else in my kitchen and I couldn't wait to get home and just boil water in it. This was about the same time renting movies came in vogue. What videos did I rent, Julia Child's classic "French Chef".
It has served me well for all these years, producing countless sauces with predictable quality. I've a fine collection of Le Creuset now along with other quality brands. Each has their own niche in my kitchen. I even have some cheap cookware that, for various reasons, has its place on the shelf. They're kind of like family but none has been as dear to me as my little #14 saucier.
A few weeks ago, while keeping my darling little grandson and trying to make a port wine reduction at the same time, tragedy struck. There are few things in life as captivated as the first gummy little smile of your adorable 3 month old grandchild. Then the acrid smell hit. Dashing to the stove, I found a dry and completely blackened little pot. Now don't think I haven't burned things up before, burned broccoli has occurred quite a few times, but burned alcohol is different. Since the tragedy, I've tried everything to loosen the burnt and blackened stuff, nothing has revived my little saucier friend. Soaking, steel wool, baking soda, vinegar, cream of tartar, 20 Mule Team, OxyClean, and nasty oven cleaner. I've tried a good many things that chipped off the worst of it but I finally realized the kitchen chemotherapy had failed and the enamel has been damaged by my efforts. Now it seemed to reek of nasty chemicals. I dashed to one of the kitchen suppliers to check for a replacement and found the model has been discontinued. It was as devastating as the time I found they had discontinued both my bra and lipstick in one day. Has the world gone mad?
I've looked on ebay to replace it. I found one just like it - in Australia. In the meantime, does anyone have any suggestions.
- Recipes & Random Thoughts
- I have been cooking my way through life for over 50 years, beginning with mud pies as a child. I've turned a corner now and feel a Renaissance in my life. Recipes and Random Thoughts is my personal spin in a blog about how to prepare good food and how it prepares you for life. I want to share with you, honest to goodness food punctuated with perspective from the special memories and moments that have marked my journey.