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An Imperative Kitchen Tool

Asian Cuisines, be it Chinese, Thai, Vietnamese, or Indian, have extensively influenced the palates of many worldwide. The taste of food is dependent on flavor and technique. Utensils in use contribute significantly to this overall taste, and a ubiquitous kitchen necessity is a Wok. Its diversity and benefits, alongside the splendid flavor profile it provides, have made it very popular in Non-Asian countries. With rising health concerns related to food, people have discovered and adapted to better products and utensils.

Purpose and Types:

A wok is generally used for stir-frying. However, its unique design has been fruitful in aiding deep-frying, steaming, and smoking meats in recent times.

The different varieties are:

  • Round bottom & Flat bottom: These are circular and flat, respectively, and are deep to increase volume.
  • Pow: Originated from Northern China, it is a carbon-steel pot having a 6-8 inch handle.
  • Cantonese: This variety contains two horseshoe-shaped structures attached opposite each other to provide support.
  • Mandarin: Smaller than the Cantonese type, these are accompanied by metal or wooden handles on both sides.
  • Non-stick: This type consists of its inner surface being coated with Teflon. Even ceramic-based ones fall under this category.
  • Aluminum & Cast Iron: This classification is based on the material used – anodized aluminum alloys and iron, respectively. The iron-based are light and easier to clean.
  • Hand Hammered: Manufactured by hand hammering a single sheet of material.
  • Carbon Steel: Being one of the popularly used kinds, this is made of hardened steel, is non-responsive, lightweight, and is durable. It can be used in the preparation of vinegary/acidic nourishments and will not rust.

Owing to their versatility, they are used more commonly. Through shows like MasterChef, countries outside Asia, e.g., Australia, have mastered this appliance and are huge fans of Thai food.

Benefits:

  • Healthier Food and Easier Cooking: 

Everyone must follow a balanced diet. This includes consuming less oil which is an advantage as it makes food healthy and easy to digest. It also consumes lesser time and due to its multi-purpose nature, cleaning up becomes effortless!

  • Enhanced Taste:

The unique structure of this appliance provides for an even distribution of heat, allowing meats and vegetables to be cooked at their own pace. There is a lesser chance of overcooking, and the additional flavor is imparted. One must remember that to check the calories they consume, as they can use this appliance to make many dishes. Many Asian Cuisine-based dishes are known to be prepared using a wok and have positive health impacts.

Cooking food for an extended period makes it void of essential vitamins like vitamins B&C. Stir-frying was a few seconds prevents this to a great extent. High heat also causes loss of certain nutrients, which is not severe while cooking with this equipment owing to its overall design facilitates even distribution of heat.

  • Affordability:

The price of a high-quality wok is pretty affordable. One can choose from the different variety present what best suits their cooking style or kitchen. Websites online have sales during which the set budget drops even lower, making it easy to own, thus reducing one’s dependency on many utensils or borrowing from a neighbor.

This cooking equipment is available in different sizes and is a must-have for food lovers. Due to their higher edges, they can store more food, allowing one to enjoy the leftovers of their favorite dish the next day.

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