Tag Archives | Anolon

Giveaway: Anolon Vesta Cast Iron 5 Quart Braiser

anolon braiser top

I have a minor cookware obsession. I shop thrift stores for old cast iron skillets. I scan yard sales for vintage Le Creuset or Cousances. And I pick up stainless steel skillets at discount stores, always in the hope of finding a piece that will eclipse all others.

anolon handle

Because of this preoccupation, I find that I’ve become something of a cookware attractor. One more than one occasion, strangers have walked up to me with gifts of grill pans and ancient canning kettles. And last spring at the IACP conference, I unwittingly chose a seat that had been marked as a winner in an Anolon Vesta 5-Quart Cast Iron Braiser giveaway.

anolon braiser side

I turned in the card that marked me as a winner (there were a number of us that day) along with my mailing information, and several weeks later, this lovely braiser arrived on my doorstep.

The outside is a shiny red and the interior sports a matte black enamel interior. The interior of the lid is studded with raised nubs that are designed to channel flavorful liquid back into the food as it cooks. It conducts heat beautifully, cleans up easily, and makes an excellent small batch jam pan.

anolon braiser lid tilted

Back in June, I ran into the ladies who help Anolon with their PR and gushed about how much I’ve enjoyed this piece of cookware. They were delighted to hear it and asked if I might like to give a couple of them away. I think I said yes before the question was even finished.

So that’s what I’m giving away this week. I have two of these Vesta Braisers for two of you. Here’s how to enter.

  1. Leave a comment on this post and tell me something about your cookware situation. Do you you have very pot and pan you’ve ever dreamed of? Are you a cast iron person, or do you prefer stainless steel? Or perhaps, you’re on a mission to find the perfect skillet to complete your batterie de cuisine.
  2. Comments will close at 11:59 pm east coast time on Saturday, August 8, 2015. The winner will be chosen at random and will be posted to the blog on Sunday, August 9, 2015.
  3. Giveaway is open to US residents only (and is void where prohibited).
  4. One comment per person, please. Entries must be left on the blog, I cannot accept submissions via email.

For more information about Anolon and their cookware, follow them on social media. Here’s where you can find them.

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

Disclosure: Anolon is providing the two braisers I’m giving away at no cost to me. Additionally, the one you see photographed here was itself a giveaway prize, so I did not pay for it. However, no money has traded hands in order to bring this giveaway into being. This blog post exists simply because this is an excellent product and I’m happy to have an opportunity to share it with you guys. All opinions expresses are entirely my own. 

Plum Cardamom Jam and a Anolon Advanced 11-Piece Cookware Set Giveaway [sponsored]

finished plum cardamom jam

The first homemade jam I ever tasted was made with homegrown plums. I was just four or five years old and the trees in our backyard were having a bumper year. My mom picked enough to fill her yellow enamel colander, gave them a good rinse under the tap, and turned them in sweet, slightly drippy preserves. We ate those plums over pancakes and with oatmeal every chance we got.

syrupy plums

Though I will often tell people that blueberries are my foundational fruit (and they were the star in my very first solo batch of jam), there is something about the flavor of plum jam that makes my brain go, “ah yes, THIS is what homemade jam should taste like.”

finished plum jam

I recently made my first batch of plum jam for this season (I was asked by Anolon gourmet cookware to develop this particular recipe), from the same kind of sturdy black plums that used to grow in our southern California yard. I added a little ground cardamom for extra depth and I cooked the whole thing in the 7.5 quart wide stock pot from the Anolon Advanced line. Though I don’t normally gravitate towards non-stick cookware for jam making, the width and low walls of the pan made it irresistible.

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post (hopefully that was clear before you got to this disclosure statement). Anolon has compensated me for the creation of the plum jam recipe. They sent me the stockpot in which I made the jam (I did really like it, though), and they’re providing the cookware set for the giveaway. The thoughts and words are still all entire mine. 

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Giveaway: Anolon Tri-Ply 5 Quart Dutch Oven

anolon lid 640

Over the last few years, I’ve become something of a booster for stainless steel cookware. I like the fact that it’s durable, relatively light (at least if compared to enameled cast iron), and comparatively easy to clean. The easy to clean part is of particular importance because as an easily distracted person who frequently cooks sugary things, I occasionally find myself scorching or burning a batch of jam or jelly (it happens to the best of us).

When this happens in expensive enameled cast iron, the jig is up (at least in my experience). The cooking surface of that vessel is forever changed for the worse and the pot becomes increasingly prone to future burns. When you burn something in stainless steel, you can soak and scrub until the charred bits release their hold. Though the surface may bear marks of the burn, it will continue to serve.

Anolon Dutch Oven

And so, I’ve slowly been building my collection of stainless steel cookware (I still have some enameled pots and pans, but I save them for low heat and oven applications). I have a few pieces of All-Clad that were either picked up at a thrift store or bought at steep discount from Cookware & More. We added some nice pans from Anolon’s Nouvelle Cuisine line (thanks to this giveaway partnership) to the kitchen last year. And just recently, this Anolon Tri-Ply 5 Quart Dutch Oven joined my cookware line-up.

Anolon Dutch Oven

The nice folks at Anolon sent it over, thinking that it might be a good pan for the tiny batches of jam I often make. And they were absolutely right. It’s a terrific piece of cookware that is perfect for small batches of jams, jellies, and chutneys because of its low, wide design (it promotes fast evaporation!). I also like it for the soups and sauces I frequently make for dinner (it’s size helps keep me from cooking for an army, which is my natural default). And if you’re looking for a relatively inexpensive Dutch Oven in which to bake loaves of no-knead bread, look no further. This guy is oven safe up to 500 degrees F.

Thanks to Anolon, I have one of these Tri-Ply 5 Quart Dutch Ovens to give away. Here’s how to enter:

  1. Leave a comment on this post and tell me about your favorite piece of cookware.
  2. Comments will close at 11:59 pm east coast time on Saturday, November 23, 2013. Winner will be chosen at random and will be posted to the blog on Sunday.
  3. Giveaway is open to US residents (apologies to my more far-flung readers).
  4. One comment per person, please. Entries must be left via the comment form on the blog at the bottom of this post. I do not accept submissions via email.
Disclosure: Anolon has provided both my review unit of the 5-Quart Dutch oven and the giveaway unit at no cost to me. However, my opinions remain entirely my own.

Photos from the FIJ Flickr Pool + Anolon Winner


First up this week is a collection of homemade pickles from Katie Blair Designs. She made dilly beans, pickled banana peppers, garlic dill pickle slices, and pickled radishes. You have excellent taste in pickles, Katie!

Pumpkin Pie

Lindsay from A Wooden Nest made these adorable little pumpkin pies in jars. Make sure to click over to her blog for the recipe and instructions on how to make these yourself.


Courtney’s been canning up a storm this season! Her haul was inspired by recipes from my book, as well as Tart and Sweet, Canning for a New Generation. Good choices, Courtney!


Wow! Craftygal Angela pressure-canned up a whopping 28 pints of chili! Sounds like she’s set for easy lunches and dinners for a good long while.

cherry chutney from www.talkoftomatoes.com

Finally, a little blast from summer days recently past. A balsamic cherry chutney from Janelle at Talk of Tomatoes. I imagine that the combination of deep, dark cherries and balsamic is just perfect.

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Time for the winner of last week’s Anolon Nouvelle Copper 4-Quart Casserole giveaway! The randomizer selected #489, which is the comment left by Kate of 8-Bit State. She said, “I’ve been keeping my eye open for a decent stock pot so I can make batches of soup to freeze for later. Right now, I make most of my soup in an oversized Le Creuset dutch oven.” Good luck with your stock pot search, Kate! I hope you find something affordable soon. And I hope you like the 4-quart casserole as much as I do!

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Giveaway: Anolon Nouvelle Copper Stainless Steel 4-Quart Casserole

Anolon Nouvelle Cuisine 4-Quart Casserole

I’m always on the hunt for the perfect small batch jam pot. Something sturdy (but not enormous), non-reactive and with a low, wide profile for quick evaporation. It needs to function on an induction cooktop, conduct heat evenly and be nice to look at. I have a couple vintage enameled cast iron pots that checks most of my boxes, but they are so heavy that I’m always reluctant to wrestle one off the shelf for a quick preserve.

plums and book

However, a new pot came into my life a couple months ago and we’ve been making sweet, sweet jam (as well as sauces, chutneys and braises) together ever since. My small batch pot quest may indeed be over. The object of my cookware affection? The Anolon Nouvelle Copper Stainless Steel 4-Quart Casserole.

braised pork butt with leeks and cranberries

The stainless steel interior means that it will never leach a metallic flavor into my preserves and if I happen to burn something (it happens to the best of us), I can scrub away without worrying that I’m doing damage to the surface (a concern with the enameled pots). It’s got a thick copper disc at the bottom, which makes for good heat conduction and a pretty patina to boot.

Anolon casserole

I’m also a big fan of the shape of this pot (you don’t realize how hard it is to find affordable, good quality pots that are low and wide until you start shopping). The shallow depth means you get lots of surface area, which in turns promotes evaporation. Cooking the water out of the fruit effectively is a vital part of making jams, fruit butters, chutneys and jellies. Having a pot that aids that effort instead of fighting it makes for a better product every time.

Marisa with 4-quart casserole

The nice folks at Anolon sent me this pot to try out and now, they want to give one to one of my readers as well. I’m certain that whichever one of you end up with it will be so happy to have it in your kitchen! If you want to enter the giveaway, here’s what you do.

  1. Leave a comment on this post and tell me about your own cookware quest. Whether you’ve been looking for the perfect sauté pan or you’re on the search for a cast iron skillet like the one your grandma had, I want to hear your story.
  2. Comments will close at 11:59 pm east coast time on Friday, October 19, 2012. Winner will be chosen at random and will be posted to the blog over the weekend.
  3. Giveaway is open to US residents (apologies to my more far-flung readers).
  4. One comment per person, please. Entries must be left via the comment form on the blog at the bottom of this post. I do not accept submissions via email.
Disclosure: Anolon have provided both my review unit of the 4-Quart casserole and the giveaway unit at no cost to me. What’s more, they’ve compensated me for the time invested in this review with a 10-piece set of Anolon Nouvelle Copper Stainless Steel Cookware. However, my opinions remain my own and have not been influenced by the review unit or the cookware set.