Charles Phan's favorite piece of kitchen equipment from San Francisco Chinatown. This Taiwanese hand-formed wok heats evenly and quickly and is small enough to fit into most home kitchens. This wok is appropriate for gas stoves, and can be used on its own. This is a carbon steel pan so it does take some seasoning and maintenance, though it is worth the effort and will elevate your stir fry cooking.
How to Clean Carbon Steel Pans and Skillets Properly
Method One: Wipe Your Pan Out
Yes, it is this easy to wash your pan if it has been seasoned and used properly. Use a paper towel or a kitchen towel to wipe out any excess oil from your pan, and thanks to the patina it has developed, it should look as good as new in practically no time. However, for more stubborn messes, progress to the following step.
Method Two: Coarse Salt and Oil
Add 2 tablespoons of coarse salt and 2 tablespoons of a neutral oil, such as canola oil, vegetable oil, or grapeseed oil, to your pan. Using a paper or kitchen towel, rub the salt and oil around the pan. The friction of the salt rubbing against the pan will free up any food bits. Dump the salt and oil and leftover food from the pan. If this doesn’t work, we have one more trick for you.
Method Three: Bring Water to a Boil
For any stuck on food that won’t come off the surface of your pan can be freed with this trick. Add a small amount of warm water, just enough water to cover the bottom of your pan and bring it to a boil over medium heat. Once the pan has reached a boil, use a wooden or rubber spatula to scrape at the food bits. Once all the food is free from the surface of the pan, dump the water in the sink. Return your pan to the burner over medium heat to completely dry your pan in order to prevent rusting. Then, apply a thin layer of canola or grapeseed oil to the surface of the pan. Let the pan sit on the burner for one minute. Your pan is now clean and seasoned.
Method Four: Use Steel Wool
If none of this has worked so far, it’s time to break out the steel wool. We recommend gently scrubbing the areas of your pan containing stuck on food bits with steel wool to remove them. While this can cause superficial scratches, they will fill in the more you season and use your pan.