So when I spied this lovely stainless steel-lined copper skillet at a T.J.Maxx store a few years ago, I didn't buy it for the celebrity brand, which wasn't obviously displayed anyway. I bought it because it seemed like a damn good skillet. And at $39.99 the price was way too good to pass up, even though it meant I would have to lug it home in a suitcase.
• It heats evenly and quickly.
• The copper finish is brushed, which I prefer to shiny. I'm not the type of cook who keeps her copper polished and I really enjoy the wabi-sabi patina that has built up on the copper over the years.
• It's well-balanced and it's relatively easy to lift. Yes, its heavy but that's one of the reasons I bought it in the first place. The day will likely come, if I live long enough, that I won't be able to lift it with ease. Until then, I consider it a part of my workout.
• I really like the black handle, both for aesthetic as well as practical reasons. It's made of cast stainless steel and stays relatively cool to the touch.
• As I said, it's a little large for small-batch cooking but still, I am surprised at how often I use it.
• Marco Pierre White's signature is carved into the handle but you can barely see it, so it's not an issue.
The folks at T.J.Maxx listed it as retailing for $80 but when I went online to do some research, I found out that it actually sells for £80, which is closer to $125. Still, they discounted it at half-price from $80, so I paid only $39.99 plus tax. That smile that comes to my face whenever I use my favorite pan may also have something to do with getting such a good deal!
• Find it: MPW's Copper Skillet, £80 at Amazon.co.uk
Related: Help! Did I Ruin My Copper Pots?
(Image: Dana Velden)