There are at least three reasons why you would want the best roasting pan available.
One is that you are a perfectionist as a cook and want the absolute best results when it comes to roasting turkey, ham, duck, goose, fish, prime rib, vegetables, and more.
Two is that when you pursue something, you don’t do it halfway — that means that when you acquire an item, you prefer state-of-the-art.
Three is that aesthetics are important to you. You appreciate fine craftsmanship and understand that when you buy the best, it will last much longer and perform better than any number of mediocre, uninspired versions of that item.
The best roasting pan for roasting turkey or ham is also the best roasting pan for roasting everything else: a Mauviel Roasting Pan. Since 1830, Mauviel has been making what is probably the best copper cookware in the world (particularly when considering price). Bottom line: when it comes to roasters, you cannot do better than Mauviel.
So in this case, my discriminating cook, consider a Mauviel roasting pan. It is, hands-down, the best roasting pan you can get, whether for professional or household use.
Since we’re approaching the holidays — a time when roast turkey and roast ham are on the minds of many cooks — you may have been wondering: what is a better roasting pan than the one that cost $34.95 that you used last year? Maybe the results from that cheap pan weren’t so great. Maybe your guests said polite things about your turkey and gravy, but you knew they could have turned out a lot better. Maybe you’ve since realized that if you’re going to go to all the trouble of preparing a turkey, a duck, or whatever, you may as well do everything you can to make it completely delicious.
After all, the point of life is not to pursue mediocre results.
So, as Thanksgiving and Christmas approach and you’ve set your sights on cooking the best darn turkey or ham any of your family and friends have ever tasted, you decide that this is the year you’re going to upgrade your kitchen tools. And getting a top-quality roasting pan is on the list.
That makes this recommendation easy.
In a nutshell, this is what makes Mauviel M’Heritage Roasting Pans the best roasting pans in the world:
- Mauviel has been making roasting pans by hand since 1830.
- They are made with the best materials.
- Their designs have been tested and perfected for over 180 years.
- Mauviel roasting pans are guaranteed for life.
- Mauviel copper roasting pans are beautiful.
Are they expensive? As a once-in-a-lifetime purchase, not really. You must understand that when you buy a Mauviel roaster, you’ll be able to use it for the rest of your life. And use it frequently. And then your kids will get it and it will probably last for the rest of their lives as well. Along the way, it will be delivering the best results to which a discerning cook can aspire. Thus, at a cost of between $200 – $300, you get a kitchen tool that will not only last for decades, it will perform ideally every time you use it (as long as you know what you’re doing — but that depends on your skill as a cook). So, for much less than the cost of a 16GB Apple iPad 2, you can own the best roasting pan in the world. (And what are the odds you will still be using the iPad in 30 years?)
How many “best of all” things in the world can you get for under $300?
Pictured at left is the Mauviel M’Heritage Roasting Pan from the 150 Copper Collection. It’s available from Sur La Table now for a discount. Mauviel is generally known in professional culinary circles as the manufacturer of some of the best copper cookware ever made.
This roasting pan is made of a combination of 90% copper and 10% stainless steel. The stainless steel interior does not react with food, enabling you to make delicious gravies and sauces in the pan. The copper exterior (1.5mm thick, hence the “150” designation) provides consistent and even heat conduction.
The handles are made of heavy-duty bronze and secured with rivets. They are sized and angled in such a way that you can lift the pan when it is hot and heavy without burning yourself. The size of this roasting pan is an ideal 15¾” by 12″ x 3½” — just right for a turkey up to 25 pounds. It is safe for oven or broiler, up to a temperature of 500°F. It will work with any stove-top heat source except induction heating.
And when you get this excellent roasting pan from Sur La Table now, you also get a non-stick rack and a Mauviel kitchen towel with it. Not a bad deal.
Maybe you’ve been shopping for a roaster for awhile. You might have been browsing through reviews of roasting pans on the Internet. Maybe you’re wondering why Mauviel isn’t mentioned in those reviews more often.
Frankly, it’s because a lot of those reviews assume most people will want to spend only around $100 on a roasting pan. So the reviewers deliberately exclude the very best models. Not that you can’t get a fairly decent roasting pan for a little over $100. (In fact, I mention two high-quality, less expensive alternative roasting pans below, in case you want to consider them.) But for that price you can’t get the best roasting pan made. That’s just how it is.
And that’s not going to do it for you. (Go back to the three reasons why you want the best roasting pan mentioned at the beginning of this review.)
For example, you don’t want to get a non-stick roasting pan because you won’t be able to deglaze the pan properly. (Deglazing is when you pour a cold liquid — water or stock, for example — into a hot pan to loosen the roasted brown bits (also known as “fond”) that are stuck to the bottom in order to make gravy or sauce.) Too, the surface of non-stick roasting pans can eventually flake off perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) or polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) into your food. And those substances are not in any recipe you want to make.
You don’t want an aluminum roasting pan because aluminum can react with certain foods (e.g. tomatoes, asparagus, artichokes, apples, citrus, vinegar, eggs, etc.) and because it tends to warp more easily than other metals, even in heavier gauges.
A roasting pan made entirely of stainless steel does not conduct heat as well as a roasting pan that includes aluminum or copper, thus making it less efficient and more prone to uneven heating.
You don’t want a roasting pan made of ceramic or Pyrex because you can’t use them on the stovetop — such as to sear meat, which is often done before you pop it into the oven for roasting. Likewise, you don’t want a roasting pan that’s too lightweight, because it can warp, buckle, or “pop” when you’re trying to use it on the stovetop. A lightweight, warped pan can result in irregular browning and uneven cooking. Not desirable if you want your roast to turn out well. You want a heavy-weight (but not so heavy it makes lifting a large turkey or ham difficult) roasting pan that is flameproof, can be used on the stovetop, can be used in the oven at high heat, and can be used under the broiler.
For these reasons, the materials used to make the Mauviel M’Heritage Roasting Pan are ideal — a tri-ply stainless steel interior with an aluminum core and a copper exterior. The stainless-steel interior of the Mauviel pan even cleans up pretty easily with soap and water.
Why is Copper Cookware the Best?
Copper cookware is the best. It has been the best cookware for thousands of years. Copper heats up quickly and distributes heat evenly.
Fundamentally, cooking is the process of subjecting food to heat.
Copper is a metal that conducts heat 10 times more efficiently than stainless steel and twice as efficiently as aluminum. Copper cookware will cook food effectively using less heat. Copper heats up faster and more uniformly than any other material used in manufacturing cookware. Copper pots and pans will also cool more quickly than other types of cookware, whether it’s made from iron, glass, or ceramic. During cooking, you will be able to control the heat and rate of cooking more precisely and easily with copper since it is so responsive. This makes it ideal for cooking more “delicate” things such as sauces, chocolate, and foods that respond to heat better when cooked at controlled temperatures.
Due to its high thermal conductivity, copper cookware can often be used at lower temperatures than would be used with other cookware (medium heat as opposed to high heat). It can also reduce the time it takes to cook a particular food. As a result, using copper cookware is more energy-efficient and could help you save on energy bills.
As an obvious example, try frying an egg in a copper skillet and then in a cast-iron skillet. Note the difference in where you set the temperature on the stove for the respective pans, how long it takes each pan to heat up, and the amount of time it takes for the egg to be done.
There is a reason most professional chefs use copper cookware in kitchens around the world — it results in food of superior quality. It even works better for re-heating food.
The only drawback to copper is that it is toxic to ingest. Therefore, the interior of copper cookware — the part that comes in contact with the food — is covered with a layer of tin, silver, or stainless steel. A couple of advantages to using stainless steel for lining copper pans is that it avoids the necessity of the process known as “retinning,” and stainless steel can be used at higher temperatures than tin.
Copper cookware is also beautiful. It looks great in the kitchen and makes an elegant serving dish.
Imagine how appealing your turkey, ham, or prime rib will look as you place it on the table in front of your guests in a Mauviel M”Heritage Roasting Pan.
Mauviel: 180 Years of Success
The town of Villedieu-les-Poêles, located near Mont-Saint-Michel in northwest France, has been a center for metal-working since it was granted to the Knights of Malta in the 12th century. In 1830, in keeping with this tradition, Ernest Mauviel established the company that bears his name. The company was established to manufacture copper cookware for the hotel and restaurant market in France.
Now Mauviel offers a line of cookware encompassing 1,000 products, and has branched out beyond the professional and commercial markets to include discerning household cooks.
When the company celebrated its 180th year in business in 2010, Valérie Mauviel Gilbert, a 6th-generation descendant of Ernest Mauviel, stated: “The strength and foundation for Mauviel’s manufacturing expertise is based upon this rich tradition of copper manufacturing that has been handed down from generation to generation. This year we celebrate the heritage that has inspired the designs of today.”
When it comes to “Old World Craftsmanship,” you won’t find anything better than Mauviel handcrafted copper cookware. See the video below for a brief profile of the company.
How many other products can you currently buy today that have been continuously developed and produced by the same company for over 180 years? Mauviel has had to satisfy literally generations of customers in order to succeed in business for this long. And 7th-generation family members are still running the company. Do you think they know a thing or two about making a good roasting pan?
One cook whose review I read gave away her All-Clad roasting pan after trying a Mauviel Pan.
When it comes to reviews of Mauviel roasting pans, I must apologize: try as I might, I could not find a single negative review or even a minor complaint about Mauviel cookware. Usually I like to point out one or two drawbacks with regard to a product, even a top-rated product, if only to indicate that I’m doing my best to undertake an honest evaluation. But everyone who owns and uses Mauviel cookware is happy with it — without exception, as far as I can determine.
If you’re impressed by the performance and benefits of copper cookware and would like to invest in more of this superior kitchen technology, you can shop for a range of Mauviel copper pots and pans at Sur La Table and Chefs Catalog. Remember that each piece comes with a lifetime warranty and is an heirloom-quality item when properly cared for.
Given the time of year it is, when it comes to using a roasting pan, you’ll probably think first of roasting a turkey. Every year, about 242 million turkeys are raised in the United States, and a significant percentage of them are eaten in November and December. Though this number of birds seems large, it still lags behind US consumption of chicken, beef, and ham.
Still, we do love us some holiday gobblers. Once you’ve gotten the best roasting pan for preparing your feast, what’s the best way to cook it? There are almost as many good turkey recipes as there are cooks who swear by them, but for me, this recipe for slow-roasting a turkey in the oven is the best. It’s a can’t-miss formula for juicy, tender turkey that just about falls off the bone. And it’s simple for even a novice cook to prepare.
After you’ve mastered roasting a turkey, you can move on to roasting many other types of foods…
Roasting Pans Can Be Used for Many More Recipes and Cooking Tasks than You Might Think
If you enjoy cooking, be aware that a roasting pan can do much more than roast a turkey or ham. You can use it to roast vegetables, potatoes, and yams. You can use it to braise meats, poultry, and vegetables.
When you want to make a big batch of enchiladas or lasagna, a large roasting pan will accommodate the extra amount. The same goes for shepherd’s pie. And you can bake the deepest of deep-dish pies.
You can use a roasting pan to make a water bath for baking soufflés or cheesecake.
You can roast pumpkin seeds and parsnips. And onions and carrots.
Don’t forget slow-roasted leg of lamb.
And you can prepare outstanding ribs.
You can roast fruits such as apples, pears, peaches, plums, apricots, pineapples, mangoes, and figs.
And you can use your Mauviel Roasting Pan for roasting caramel popcorn, making Rice Krispy treats, scrambling eggs for 10 people on the stovetop, cooking corn on the cob, pancakes, grilled cheese sandwiches, baked Ziti, a panful of mussels, Chex mix, and even soup stock.
Since you can use this M’Heritage pan both on the stove and in the oven, there is very little you can’t do with it. It will actually become one of your most useful and versatile pans. You will be inspired to cook more!
Alternative Roasting Pans that are Also Good
As a cook, you want what you prepare to be delicious. The cookware you use plays a huge role in the quality of your food, particularly when it comes to roasting. For example, your roasting pan can easily make the difference between burned, unevenly-cooked, dried-out turkey (or whatever else you’re roasting) and succulent, perfectly-browned, juicy meat, along with the best gravy you’ve ever tasted from the drippings.
For the best results, I obviously recommend the Mauviel M’Heritage Roasting Pan. However, some people won’t want to take advantage of the many uses to which a top-quality roasting pan can be put. Perhaps you just want to roast a turkey a couple of times a year, prime rib every so often, and the occasional brace of chickens. And you might not prioritize using an attractive roasting pan as a serving dish. If that’s the case, here are two alternative roasting pans that will meet your needs…
The first is — surprise — the Mauviel M’Collection Roasting Pan, a 5-ply pan that encloses a hefty aluminum core between layers of 18/10 stainless steel. The pan is oven-safe to a temperature of 680°F and can be used with all forms of stovetop heating, including induction. It is the same size as the roasting pan above and can also handle up to a 25-pound bird. You can get this high-quality roaster from Sur La Table by clicking the image to the left or the link above — and it comes with a rack and a kitchen towel. This is Mauviel quality for less than the price of the M’Heritage roaster.
The second alternative roasting pan is the All-Clad Stainless Steel Roaster (pictured below). This heavy-duty pan is made of 18/10 stainless steel over a core of aluminum. It features riveted, rapid-cooling, French-style handles for secure, comfortable lifting — even with a 25-pound turkey. The size is a capacious 16″ x 13″ x 3″. (Always look for a roasting pan with sides about 3 inches high. That way, the sides won’t interfere with the browning of the meat and you can still avoid spilling hot juices over the side.) All-Clad guarantees this roaster for life. You can get it from Sur La Table and Chefs Catalog. Both sites are offering this pan for a big discount now.
By the way, I recommend shopping at these two specialized sites for cooks. Not only do they both offer a comprehensive and expertly-chosen selection of products for cooking, they each have good customer service, and their pricing and deals are competitive.
Plus, I believe you can trust their customer reviews more than the reviews you’ll find on more generic online sales sites, since the people who shop at these businesses tend to be more experienced cooks and enthusiastic about cooking in general.
Be sure to check the customer reviews for all the pans listed in this review.
Just like you remember the special pans used by your father or mother to make holiday meals when you were a kid, your Mauviel pan is going to have a hallowed place in your family’s traditions. There is a great deal of satisfaction in owning and using a kitchen tool that will not only cook the best food, it will make your kitchen and home a more beautiful place. Such are the benefits of great design and craftsmanship.
When you look at a Mauviel roasting pan, you get the same feeling that you get when you look at a Bentley automobile or a Sage fly rod. The difference between a Mauviel M’Heritage Roasting Pan and, say, a Granite Ware roaster is like the difference between a yacht and a wooden dingy. Sure, the dingy will move you over the water, but it won’t inspire you with a sense of distinctive technological prowess. It certainly won’t handle any conditions you throw at it. And it won’t approach a yacht with respect to durability, sophistication, versatility, style, and performance.
Fortunately, the best roasting pan is much more easily obtainable than a yacht.
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