Emile Henry vs Pans for baking Lasagna

jerrymbJanuary 1, 2006

Emile Henry since its not metal doesnt seem as popular on some sites like Cooks Illustrated and here, why is that? I can see it on Cooks illustrated since they seem to be too focused on All-clad and metal pans in general and not really on the whole world of cooking, Case in point is their using a 12" fry pan for stir-frying instead of a carbon steel (not non-stick) wok, but why here? How would you compare the Emile Henry to the Le creuset (non cast iron) bakeware?

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Jerry, I have both EH & LC stoneware. IMO they are both wonderful. I can't see much difference between them. The EH is just a shade thicker and I do like it better because of that, but mostly the sizes of my pieces determine which I use.

Small oval LC
Med oval EH
Med rect EH
Large oval LC
Bread pan EH

Everything I cook in them come out amazingly good. I will never go back to metal (or silicon) again.


    Bookmark   January 1, 2006 at 4:13PM
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Welcome Jerry, glad to have you on board. Please join us on the Cooking Forum too. I don't own LC or Emile Henry pottery (I have lots of LC cast iron). But, I bake most everything in earthenware...I use Bennington Pottery and absolutely love it. Bread, especially seems to be better baked in pottery over a metal pan. However, for a quick bread, I've found that the pottery takes too long to get hot. So, I put the loaf pan in the oven while preheating & I'm mixing. By the time I'm ready to bake, the pan is hot...in goes the quick bread batter and cooking begins immediately. I get a much superior, higher rising loaf that I've ever had from a metal loaf pan. I bake my yeast sandwich breads in Bennington Pottery loaf pans as well and love the results. As for casseroles, again...I only use pottery. I just like the way it cooks better. There's also an aesthetic about it that appeals to me.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2006 at 8:52PM
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TriciaE, What do you think when you see all the talk of pyrex for baking?

    Bookmark   January 1, 2006 at 9:05PM
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I don't like Pyrex for anything. Everything sticks to it and baking results are unpredictible. The only Pyrex in my kitchen are two measuring cups!

    Bookmark   January 1, 2006 at 10:36PM
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Same here. I wanted to like Pyrex (for all the obvious reasons) but it really is terrible. Stoneware, earthenware, whatever you call it is just such a superior product. If I needed another piece I'd try the Bennington but I seem to have everything I typically want. A covered casserole might be nice someday.


    Bookmark   January 2, 2006 at 9:44AM
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TriciaE, what is it about Bennington that you like over LC or Emile Henry? Is it the weight, color or shape that apeals to you more?

    Bookmark   January 2, 2006 at 9:56AM
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Quality & Made in America....

And, my everyday dishes are Bennington so everything matches but, mostly, the above.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2006 at 5:46PM
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I would go ceramic over metal for casseroles, lasagna, etc. just for the aesthetics and the fact they stay warmer longer on the table.

I recently bought a Henry Emile pie plate. My mother in-law left hers at our place one day and I ended up using it out of curiosity. I was surprised at the superior results over the Pyrex pie plate I had been using. Takes a bit longer to cook the pie but aesthetics and end result are very good. I now have my own and would not hesitate to buy more Henry Emile if a need comes up.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2006 at 2:57AM
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I was in William Sonoma last year shopping and one of the sales people introduced me to Henry Emile bread pan for meat loaf. For years I used my old metal pan for this. Well I made the best meatloaf in that pan, juicy, toasty on top, and nothing stuck to the pan! It washes up beautifully everytime.

On another note, I do have an Ultima powercook microwave and wondered how or whether earthenware would work in it. Instructions explicitly say, no metal with the exception of the metal grate and browning pan they provide. I do know lot's of earthenware has metal content in the clay. I've been using the pyrex dishes in there, but would love to toss them out completely and use strictly cookware that is versatile, from oven to microwave with good performance.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2006 at 9:24AM
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Bennington Pottery is completely microwave, freezer, oven, & dishwasher safe. I imagine EH & LC are also but don't know since I don't own any. I used LC for making Christmas presents this year (white chocolate/Macadamia Nut Bread Puddings) but I was only concerned about the oven.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2006 at 1:55PM
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I looooove le Cruset....but have no Emile Henry....nor Bennington :-(
But I could not keep house without Pyrex! I have 3 or 4 different sizes of pie plates....they are perfect for marinating a couple of chicken breasts, oir for thawing some shrimp....for spreading crumbs in prior to dipping something....and I also have a 14 inch pyrez pizza pan (!!?? Yes!!) think it came from my mother! I had 2 but broke one! I love it for arranging the stuff for a stir fry!
Linda C

    Bookmark   January 4, 2006 at 2:18PM
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both the LC and Emile Henry can be in Freezer, oven amd microwave, just not on the stovetop unless you have the Emile Henry Flame

    Bookmark   January 4, 2006 at 4:15PM
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Unboxing from our almost-finished kitchen remodel I was shocked to finally realize I had no appropriate pan for lasagne. Our kitchen needed to be put out of its misery for some time, and as some items hit the dust I deliberately did not replace figuring it made more sense to buy when the new kitchen was in.

So it hit me. My many pans over the years were gone because they were breakable. Fancy or plain, they all died.

So I decided to buy an enameled cast iron rectangle. I chose the Mario Batali because it was deep, the sides go straight down, it was way cheaper than Le Creuset, and I was happy with one of its two colors. I love this pan. Nothing sticks to the enamel, food stays hot in the cast iron, and the color/shape looks friendly on the everyday dinner table.

It's heavy but hey! so's lasagne, lol! This pan may outlive me.

Here is a link that might be useful: Mario Batali Enameled Cast Iron Lasagne Pan

    Bookmark   January 16, 2006 at 1:45PM
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Hi Everyone:
I'm new to this board but passionate about cooking and the equipment to get the job done. I own a number of Emile Henry baking and dinnerware pieces. Up until a few months ago I would have heartily endorsed there products. Clean up is a breeze and the colors are great! However, I have had 2 bowls mysteriously crack on me without any know reason. Both cracks were noticed while hand-washing and they have never been placed in the freezer, microwave or oven (I of course know the stove top is a BIG negative!) Anyway, I was planning to buy lots of dishware because of its reputation to withstand chips/cracks. I have a large platter which my husband knocked off the wall but it bounced on our lino without a single scratch/chip! I'd like to know if the defect is in the bowl (both are the same design- pasta bowls) or if I should reconsider buying more Emile Henry. Anyone have any experiences (good/bad) with Emile Henry?

    Bookmark   September 6, 2006 at 2:47AM
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angieb, i have their ramekins, which i use for baked chocolate desserts, and a large round souffle baker, which i've used for cobbler, no problems so far. Have you tried contacting them? I wonder if they'd replace them for you.

    Bookmark   September 6, 2006 at 6:21PM
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