Key Factors To Consider When Shopping For Stainless Steel Cookware Set

A good cook/chef knows his/her tools very well. Although they are skilled enough to create the tastiest dishes with just any appliance or cooking vessel thrown to them, they are happiest with the best quality cookware. Stainless steel is one of the most preferred materials for kitchen appliances and cookware, and for a good reason. Stainless steel items are long-lasting and sturdy too. Most of these feature layers of aluminum and copper for better heat distribution.

A good quality stainless steel cookware set can last for years, and even your lifetime before showing the slightest signs of wear and tear. While you can choose to buy such piece by piece, you could save a lot more if you simply saved up and invested in a set, all at once. All-Clad Tri-ply Bonded 10-Piece Cookware Set is an excellent example of some of the best cookware sets you can invest in. Here are some of the factors you should, however, consider when shopping for stainless steel cookware sets.

  1. Versatility
    Some of the best stainless-steel cookware can not only be used on a stovetop but also compatible with induction cooktops as well. This is needless to say how safe and efficient they are in the oven as well.
  2. Durability
    Stainless steel is one of the most durable materials out there. It is thus scratch proof and doesn’t warp or crack. The other added advantage of this material is the fact that it doesn’t rush; hence it can maintain its look and feel for decades.
  3. Even-Heat Distribution
    The best stainless-steel cookware has copper and aluminum infused together to provide even heat distribution. This means your foods will cook faster and evenly, hence a tasty meal. This also applies to stainless steel pots with a thicker base.
  4. Easy to Maintain
    As the name suggests, stainless steel doesn’t attract stains and is very easy to clean. The cookware is also safe to use in the dishwasher and doesn’t require any form of seasoning.
  5. Light but Sturdy
    Stainless steel cookware, unlike cast-iron and earthen cookware, is relatively light and sturdy. This thus makes your cooking much easier, and especially dishes that require maneuverability.

Disadvantages of Low-Quality Stainless-Steel Cookware

While high-quality stainless-steel cookware hardly disappoints, the same can not be said about low-quality ones. Some of these cheap and low-quality items don’t have a bonded base, hence heat unevenly and relatively slow. This low-quality stainless-steel cookware also has poor nonstick capabilities, hence not the best choice when preparing pancakes, omelets, and even delicate fish dishes. The only safe bet in this instance is to choose cladded or tri-ply cookware sets for satisfactory results and performance.


  1. Handles
    Always go for cookware sets with cool-touch handles. You might, however, want to avoid sets with screw-on handles that can/might loosen over time. Be sure to go for sets with very little or no crevices that might attract food particles, and those with ergonomic handles as well.
  2. Induction-Ready
    An induction-ready cookware set means you can use it both on the gas and electric range, as well as an induction cooktop. The cookware should thus be magnetic to work on an induction cooktop.
  3. Number of Pieces Included
    Check to see if all the pieces you need are included in that specific set. It is also worth noting that lids are included in the total pieces. A standard cookware set will have several different-sized pots, a frying pan, and lids. Specialty cookware sets will, however, have more pieces, including woks, steamer inserts, and strainers.
  4. Price
    Prices vary depending on the quality and each set. Research and compare prices between several suppliers and set before picking one, or making an order. Basic sets may cost between $100 and $250, while specialty sets will cost a little over $250.

The deck builder in Garland received stainless steel cookware set from Richard Gould, the owner of the company where he works because of his dedication and good work.

Etruscan Outdoor Chiminea Fireplace

The Etruscan outdoor chiminea fireplace was designed specifically for small patios and deck spaces. Its cast aluminum construction is a very durable alternative to its cast iron cousins and because the aluminum won’t rust, it will last for years through toughest of elements.  It is light weight architecture makes it very easy to maintain and can be stored away quickly during the off seasons.  Cast aluminum has been adequately tested and recommended for certain climates involving snow, heavy rain, and wet seasons. The Etruscan outdoor chiminea fireplace comes in solid black mat and accent gold for a more brighter appearance.

This small chiminea is perfect for a small deck or patio and adds a nice accent to any garden. With this unit you can enjoy an outdoor barbecue with friends or warm your feet by the fire in those chilly winter months. The Etruscan outdoor chiminea fireplace can be used with wood or charcoal and can easily accommodate fire logs of up to 12 inches. Its design allows for adjustable airflow by altering the safety door located on the bottom on the grill. It is also equipped with a removable stack for quick and easy loading and unloading.

Among the many of safety features, the Etruscan outdoor chiminea fireplace includes a spark arrestor neck insert to prevent backfire and evenly hinged spark screen for adequate viewing. It’s also outfitted with bowl handles, a matching rain lid, and fire tool. An outdoor weather cover and gas conversion kit can be purchased separately for this unit. The Etruscan ourdoor chiminea fireplace will add style and class to any patio or garden and is priced very accordingly for its features and performance.

Our Recommendations and Reviews

Our review research uncovered several flaws with the Etruscan outdoor chiminea fireplace. Several users reported that this item was smaller than they had anticipated and were unhappy with the overall size. Other reviews reported to have issues with gas conversion kits as they were not as compatible as advertised.

Positive feedback suggested that the portability of this chiminea was very convenient with regards to storage and placement. There were no reports of rusting or flame retardation. We have suggested a merchant we feel is very reliable with excellent customer service.

Features and Specifications


  • Detailed Vine Design
  • Safe Single Opening Traditional Chiminea
  • Non-Rusting Solid Cast Aluminum Alloy
  • Decorative Removable Rain Lid
  • Carry Handles for Easy Arrangement
  • Cast Iron Bottom Grate to Support Fire


  • Cast Aluminum ALCH028 Approx. 29″ x 15″ 30lbs
  • Screen and Wood Tool Included • Touch Up Paint Bottle Included
  • 1 Year Product Warranty

Prairie Gas Chiminea

I have read many user reviews lately of customers requesting a sturdy, “no frill” gas chiminea with all the functionality of the others minus the usual over done decor. The Blue Rooster Company’s Prairie gas chiminea is sleek and stream-lined right down to every last detail. This unit is made to the same dimensions and specifications  tofhe traditional line including the Rose, Butterfly, and Orchid. The gas conversion with deluxe 7 piece set of ceramic logs provides the enjoyment of an outdoor fireplace, with the convenience of gas operation.

A popular aspect of the Prairie gas chiminea is the simple conversion from propane to wood by removing the gas components turning your gas unit into an efficient wood fireplace and back again in a snap. The unique drafting design of  this Blue Rooster line of chimineas make it easy to light and very clean burning. Its heavy cast aluminum construction of up to 3/4 inches thick in some areas makes it very durable and built to last. With its traditionally, extra large mouth for full view of the fire, this large chiminea is able to handle a complete load of large fire logs and its stainless steel hinged safety provides easy access for adding wood.

The Prairie gas chiminea offers the appearance of an old world fireplace while also providing the versatility and convenience of a modern gas grill. Its clean, contemporary decoration adds a natural element of  sophistication and style meant to grace anyone’s garden or patio. The cast aluminum alloy body is weather resistant and very durable designed to handle the toughest elements. The Prairie gas chiminea is perfect for those seeking to add a handsome dimension to their garden or patio.

Our Recommendations and Reviews

After doing some research on the Prairie Gas Chiminea we found that consumers generally like this product for several reasons including its durability and sleek decor. Many customers of the Blue Rooster Company had requested a more plain looking chiminea with all the versatility of their new line. The gas conversion kit was reported very easy to remove and reattach. Other customers reported likability for the size accomodations, stating that it was large enough to feed large gatherings and was used more often than their own personal fire pits.

The only derogatory comments uncovered was that this unit is big and heavy and not portable. Some rusting was discovered due to flame retardation and paint wearing was something of an issue over time. Overall, we endorse this gas chiminea, as the pros seem to out weight the cons in this case. We have also recommend a particular merchant who will ship it for free.

Features and Specifications


  • Safe Clean Burning Single Opening Traditional Chiminea
  • Non-Rusting Solid Cast Aluminum Alloy Body
  • Stainless Steel Mouth Screen
  • Bolts and Hardware
  • Removable Matching Rain Lid Carry Handles for Easy Arrangement
  • Cast Iron Grilling Insert
  • Cast Iron Bottom Grate to Support Fire


  • Cast Aluminum ALCH027 54″ x 22″ Weight App. 80lbs Screen and Wood Tool Included
  • Touch Up Paint Bottle Included
  • 1 Year Product Warranty
  • Free Shipping in the Continental US
  • Hinged Mouth Safety Screen Spark Arrestor Neck Insert

Considerations to Think About When Buying a Cast Iron Chiminea

A chiminea is a freestanding fireplace with a vertical chimney, often in a shape of a bulb. The size of a chiminea is about five feet tall and two feet across. The chiminea originated from Mexico, where it was made from river clay and used as cooking pot. They are currently a popular garden accessory in the US and throughout Europe, since the use of a chiminea adds a touch of class and authenticity to one’s garden.

When choosing a chiminea, it is important to make sure that it is made with high quality materials for maximum strength and resilience. Some chimineas are made of inferior metals and some of terracotta clay, and while cheaper, these chimineas tend to fall apart very quickly. Cast iron chimineas are a popular choice among enthusiasts, since it is more durable and can better withstand the elements. There are many designs that are available often with traditional motifs. They can be bought through online stores or at local garden centres where you can find many interesting designs like the Phoenix Chiminea, with traditional Aztec motifs, and the high end Round Pizza Oven, which is specially designed for cooking and baking.

Other than as lawn accessory, the chiminea can also be used for cooking. To cook on the chiminea, simply ignite a fire inside the chiminea with bits of paper. The fire will burn fully within a short time, usually about 15 minutes, and gives a high heat, suitable for cooking. Due to the high temperature, the chiminea is commonly used as a grill, either wood-fired or charcoal-fired. You can place a steel sheet inside to bake pizzas and bread. The cast iron chiminea can also be used as a tandoor (traditional Indian oven), to make tandoori breads or meats. To cook slower, wrap the food in foil and place it on a grill or steel sheet. There are countless dishes that you can make with your chiminea: ribs, pies, kebabs, poussins, steaks, baked potatoes, and many more.

You should definitely invest on a good quality cast iron chiminea, but even the best chimineas fall apart quickly if not taken care of properly. You should wax the surface of chiminea regularly to make it weatherproof. Simply rub a floor wax using a clean cloth to cover the invisible cracks and pores. You should also get a storm cover to protect your chiminea from sun, rain and snow. Be sure to store the chiminea inside a building during wintertime as the combination of extreme temperature and moisture can produce cracks on the surface.

Clay Chiminea

Unlike their Cast Iron counterparts the Clay Chiminea is the more traditional way to heat and cook on your patio or terrace. The origins of the Clay Chiminea are thought to lie in Mexico, where large Clay Chimineas were used primarily for cooking. Nowadays smaller Clay Chiminea are used to keep your garden party guests warm as well as provide a unique focal point for cooking and talking.

The advantage of the Clay Chiminea over it’s iron and aluminium cousins is purely one of design and style. They are slightly less practical than the Cast Iron Chiminea, due to potential cracking and low weather resistance, but what they loose in practicality, they make up for in style and appeal. They are available in a wider variety of colours, they can be decorated with different glosses and they create a different aroma and ambience when in full swing.

Adding a Clay Chiminea to your terrace, patio or lawn is a great way to liven up a garden party and extend those Summer months for that little bit longer. Clay Chimineas are extremely efficient heat producers and after several hours the Chiminea will be projecting heat at a 360 degree radius.

Caring for a clay Chiminea is an important part of the process. Some time must be spent curing the Clay Chiminea to ensure it is ready for the intense heat of wood burning. It is also important to be very careful when moving Clay Chiminea as they tend to be constructed in two parts, the main cavern and the chimney, which have been connected at a later point in the manufacturing process.

So why not add a unique focal point to your next garden party or outside soiree? Do it like the Mexicans do, stay warm and enjoy open fire cooking right through the Autumn months.

Cast Iron Chiminea

Cast Iron Chimineas, also referred to as Chimnea and Chimeneas, are a fantastic way to liven up a patio, terrace, deck or garden area. Made from high quality, weather resistant Cast Iron, the Chiminea is far and away one of the most popular adornments for any garden and over the centuries they have proved themselves to be timeless classics!

The Cast Iron Chiminea is seeing a bit of a renaissance at the moment. With the popularity of garden parties and alfresco entertainment on the increase, home owners and garden enthusiasts require a stylish, yet practical way to keep themselves and their guests warm when the Sun has gone down. Cast Iron Chiminea designs offer great heating potential and the Chimineas with an open mesh design can project large amounts of heat out through a 360 degree radius, making them ideal for keeping your party guests warm.

Not only are Cast Iron Chiminea a great way to heat up your next garden party but they also offer the comfort and attraction of real wood burning. No-one can argue that there isn’t something quite romantic and primal about the real wood burning heat and smell. Unlike the standard camp fire, Cast Iron Chimineas extract the smoke and keep it away from your guests or family, meaning you won’t wake up in the morning smelling like a bonfire!

As well as the design, look and feel of having a Cast Iron Chiminea on your terrace, Cast Iron Chimineas are also great at keeping the area clean and tidy. All ashes are contained within the Chiminea base which makes cleaning up and preparing easy!

So if you would like to liven up your next Garden Party or Soiree then consider buying a Cast Iron Chiminea! There are few more attractive ways and practical ways to keep you, your family and your guests warm all year round!

Chiminea Outdoors

An Outdoor Chiminea is a great way to liven up any outdoor setting. Available in a large variety of styles and material types, the Outdoor Chiminea can be utilised in a variety of ways and can bring big advantages to your terrace, patio or outdoor area. Not only is a Chiminea a great focal point for a garden party of gathering, it is also a great way to lengthen the summer months and provide a unique way to cook “alfresco”.

The two main types of Outdoor Chiminea are Cast Iron and Clay. Both have their own advantages, and both have their own disadvantages. The Cast Iron Chiminea is a lot more weather resistant and particularly hardy to knocks and the intense heat. However they are a bit limited with regards to style, decoration and colour. The Clay Chiminea on the other hand is available with a much more varied decoration and appearance. They are also the most traditional sort of Chiminea, with it’s origins thought to be in Mexico. Care should always be taken when using a Clay Chiminea for the first time, as the clay needs to be “cured” before it can handle the intense heat.

An Outdoor Chiminea is great for cooking also, and a great change from the traditional Barbecue. Chimineas are available in a huge variety of sizes and styles, with some being specifically designed for cooking of a certain type. You can cook all sorts on a Chiminea, from Pizza to Marshmallows!

Chimineas require minimal assembly and are incredibly easy to maintain. The design ensures spillage of ash and cinders is kept to a minimum and the chimney design ensures you, your family and your guests don’t have to suffer with smoke eyes and clothes.

So, don’t head straight for the “Gas Barbecue” section next time you hit the stores, think about investing in an Outdoor Chimineal; a great talking point and addition to any garden area.

Honeywell Germ Free Cool Mist Humidifier For Kids

The humidifier also has many benefits whenever your kids suffer from colds and flu. The Honeywell Germ Free Cool Mist Humidifier HCM-350 is one of the best humidifiers in this series. This is an evaporative humidifier which outputs around two gallons of water daily. It is well-designed to humidify a room of up to 700 square ft. in addition, the cool mist which it produces is very ideal in case you have kids in your home since there’s no hot steam that could scald your youngsters in case the unit is tipped accidentally.


1. One of the major selling points of the Honeywell Germ humidifier is its unique germ killing abilities. The humidifier is capable of killing 99.9 percent of all the bacteria in a room along with mold and spores present in the water so as to produce clean and germ free mist. The humidifier remains well-equipped with patented germ killing chambers; a technology which takes care of your health.

2. The humidifier also has the QuietCare Technology which allows it to run even without making any noise. The device is also energy efficient and it can run for a whole day using a single filling. Despite being light, the humidifier is extremely durable, sturdy and completely break-resistant. The whole water tank of this humidifier is dishwasher safe which makes it easy to clean.

3. This humidifier also has a built-in antimicrobial filter that improves the quality of outputted air. It is a great humidifier for kids who love to play around outside, furthermore, it also has an automatic moisture balance system which is great for maintaining room temperature.


The mechanism by which the humidifier works is quite simple. The humidifier makes use of the Ultra-Violet light technology so as to kill 99.9 percent of the bacteria and germs in the tap water used. This ensures production of a cool and germ-free mist.

Firstly, the water tank is normally filled with water. The untreated water then passes to the Ultra-Violet passage where it’s treated by the UV light which kills bacteria, mold, germs, fungi and viruses.

The treated water is then allowed to reach the base where it’s absorbed using the wick filter.
The dry air within the house is pulled in the filter so as to absorb the humidity from the wick.
The sanitized, moist, 99.9 percent germ free mist is then re-emitted into the atmosphere. This makes sure that that you inhale clean and sanitized air.


The Humidifier from Honeywell is meant for people of all ages. As a result, it is lightweight and weighs only 1.5 pounds. The dimensions of the humidifier are 13X18.6 X 10.4 inches thus that it can comfortably fit in your room. The entire device is easy to carry and fill. In addition, it comes with a recessed tank handle.


The filters of this humidifier from Honeywell don’t need to be often replaced and also offers extended usage. There is also replacement filter A which is easily available from the manufacturer.
You can also choose to invest in the antimicrobial cleaning cartridges for this humidifier which are normally sold separately in separate packs of two.


You shall receive a 3-years limited warranty whenever you purchase this humidifier from Honeywell. The company will also replace or even repair the machine if any defect is found in material or workmanship. The faulty product may be sent to its manufacturer so as to get it replaced or fixed. Shipping charges must also be prepaid. Customer support is normally offered via mail. You have to visit the company’s website and then register your product under its Customer Care Center so as to get the information updates.


  • It operates quietly more so when running on a low speed
  • It kills 99.9 percent of harmful micro-organisms in the atmosphere
  • It’s self-regulating and also operates according to the relative humidity
  • Great Humidifier for your kids
  • Large and translucent water tank
  • Easy to operate
  • Wick filter can also be replaced
  • It is lightweight and weighs only 9lbs


  • Must be refilled daily
  • Has no humidistat
  • Some customers have also complained of tank leaks


The Honeywell Humidifier HCM-350 is one of the best humidifiers for your kids in the market, currently owing to its remarkable germ killing capability and several health benefits. The strong and simple build together with the easy installation features of this makes it a perfect device for parents.

Rethinking your living room?

When you move into a new home, it’s common to be unsure about how to decorate it. A thousand questions fly around your mind making it hard to actually get started. You’re thinking, what overall look do i want? Where do i buy the right furniture? Where is the best place for great deals? And so on…but don’t worry i was in exactly the same over-whelming position not so long ago.

For me, i had some difficulty deciding how to decorate my living room at the lowest prices possible without it looking cheap and tacky, while at the same time achieving a look that represented my personality.

I moved out of my parents house and into my new (much smaller) flat about 2 months ago and what i was faced with, i have to admit, i wasn’t prepared for at all. I thought: how do i decorate my living room to modern standards without breaking the bank?!

I am quite an organised person so don’t be freaked out by the extreme brainstorming that took place! I built up a scrap book made up of my favourite looks, designs and prices (organisation). I began with the focal point of my living room, and due to the lack of space, i decided that this would have to be the ever important sofa! I knew from my research in magazines and on websites that the ‘instyle’ range of sofas that would suit my living room but remain practical, was the corner group style sofas. Ah yes! I imagined it perfectly. Me and my very own corner group to relax on with a glass of chilled wine in one hand and the remote control in the other (no more squabbling with the little brother)…Bliss!

I tried websites such as ebay and among others and they offered some great furniture at discount prices. I also tried my hand at bargain hunting at the New Covent Garden Market and embarked on a few weekend carboot sale adventures, all in the hope of finding my dream furniture at the best possible prices.

As much as i enjoyed my new adventures, i decided that as a dedicated e-shopper and as someone with a busy lifestyle, the easiest way for me to buy my new furniture was through the internet. So with a little research under my belt, the next step was to visit a couple of well-known websites and compare prices. This wasn’t as easy as i thought it’d be, some websites had such beautifully crafted corner groups that at one point i actually (and quite rediculously) considered selling my car so i could afford them! When i finally came to terms with the fact that this was just not an option, i concentrated my energy on finding a website which offered stylish and affordable corner groups without the designer price tag. Sofasofa offer some great high quality, value-for-money sofas.

My next thought was the material. As you can see from the picture examples, the two modular corner groups are the same design, the only difference was the material. Once again, a few insane thoughts about how i could afford the more expensive leather corner group over the fabric one lingered for a while. Nevertheless, i realised that i sometimes dislike the cold feeling leather materials have and because i am slightly clumsy with drinks (red wine especially) i knew it had to be the machine washable loose fabric!

The next step was to choose other pieces of furniture and accessories which matched my new sofa. I knew straight away that the best deals would be on ebay and Ikea. After saving a little on the sofa purchase, i was able to buy more accessories than i anticipated such as cushions, throws, rugs, stools and a wall mirror; all of which matched the colour scheme of my sofa.

So now that i’ve finally decorated my living room, i have 5 top tips for you:

  1. If you’re unsure about how to decorate your living room, get ideas from magazines, (like these) and blogs to help you decide.
  2. Put together a scrap book, this will help you plan your overall desired look.
  3. Be bold! If you feel you are lacking in creativity (happens to everyone) try making the biggest piece of furniture the focal point of the room and keep everything else simple.
  4. If you’re looking for value for money, put good effort into comparing prices but don’t forget that quality is important too.
  5. Accessories can make a huge impact, good and bad! For a smaller room, try the minimalise approach otherwise you could end up with the ‘cluttered’ look!

What Lengths People Go To for a Perfect Sofa

Recently I heard of a story where a father ended up effectively flying 5,200 miles from California to New York, in essence, to help his daughter shop for a sofa.

To expand a little, he was going to assist his daughter with finding a bearable place to live – not something particularly easy in New York. The number of scams operating from supposed safe deals on internet sites like Craigslist coupled with sleazy landlords and pest-ridden, dingy, and depressing rooms made for an unappetising trip.

Having arrived in New York the search began. After initially following up on what turned out to be an old lead, and plenty of useless telephone conversations with numerous landlords gold was struck. ‘Heather’, an estate agent who rescued poorly and unwanted cats in her spare time, agreed to show them a round a great, open, light, well-equipped flat. Both father and daughter liked it so much payment was done on-the-spot. One thing was lacking though, a sofa.

The duo visited Brooklyn’s distinctly box-shaped and universally known Swedish furniture outlet, all of two years old. The strange thing about the place was it had seemingly been built to repel New Yorkers. New York is a place where people don’t drive, this store was on the outskirts and didn’t even have a nearby tube station. To get there New Yorkers pitch in for cab rides of up to $80, paying up to $100 more if they buy anything and therefore need it delivered, unassembled to their door.

Both father and daughter soon realised a sofa that had character was missing, and so ensued a huge trip around the rest of New York, into many smaller shops and second hand stores, until they found what the young daughter had been yearning after.

A second hand vintage sofa, big enough to seat a crowd, yet slim enough to allow it to be transported up the new flat’s myriad of staircases. With what would have been spent on similar items at the larger store they first visited, a red wing black chair was thrown in.

I guess the moral of the story is, if you know what you want and are prepared to do what it takes you can find that perfect place…complete with your perfect sofa.