If you have a growing fascination for the traditional Chinese wok and would like to try using the real thing to cook the real deal, you need hammered woks that do not have any ceramic coatings/nonstick coatings. If you feel that you are up for it and would like to upgrade your culinary skills, now’s the time to invest in the best woks in 2022!
Craft Wok – Traditional & Hand-hammered Steel Pow Wok
Craft Wok prides itself in making traditional, hand-hammered pow woks for personal and commercial use. This massive, traditional wok measures 14 inches and has a proper round bottom to make all the stir-fry recipes you want and get the appropriate heat interaction with the ingredients. If you are looking for that smoky and savory taste that you get from simple Chinese stir-fry, this is how you get it by using a pow wok.
This pow wok has been manufactured with 1.8 mm heavy gauge carbon steel, and Craft Wok originally designed it in 2014. They have not changed the design since 2014, which proves that their unique design is excellent and has been received well by home cooks and professional chefs.
One of the pow wok disadvantages is it is incompatible with flat electric stoves and induction stoves. Compared to the modern flat-bottomed ones, the pow wok only works well with high-fire gas stoves. There is a reason why pow woks have a very smooth and round bottom – the rounded bottom was meant to spread the fire and improve the pow wok’s heat distribution.
This pow wok has not been pre-seasoned, so you need to season it properly before using it. Craft Wok pow woks are hand-hammered by expert artisans in Guangzhou, China. The wok weighs nearly five pounds and is meant to be sturdy and heavy.
If you have never used a two-kilogram frying pan before, it would be best to warm up first before using this one. Besides the weight, this pow wok is designed to withstand the harshest use and the enormous flames while cooking, so don’t be afraid to use it.
No matter how high the fire goes, the safety handle will always remain cool because it is riveted, and the actual handle that will be coming into contact with your hand is wood, not steel or any other metal.
Remember to hang your Craft Wok pow wok after using. The wooden handle is also properly hygroscopic, so it doesn’t become slippery even with oil splatters. These are the signs of a quality pow wok that can be used in professional kitchens even.
Kenmore Hammond Flat-Bottomed Carbon Steel Wok (14″)
Kenmore Hammond is a Kmart brand owned by Transformco. While this carbon steel wok is not hand-hammered, it has the look and feels of a proper wok, so it should be ideal for many stir-fry recipes and other oriental recipes that require high-temperature cooking.
This steel wok also measures a full fourteen inches, which provides more space to make the cookware versatile in the kitchen. If you don’t know yet, you use woks for cooking techniques other than frying or deep-frying.
Because of the wok’s thick walls, it can just as quickly be used for steaming and braising. Don’t let these capacities fool you: the wok is a most humble type of cookware, and if you need to rewarm last night’s leftovers, it’s also a great pick in your kitchen.
We recommend that people use their carbon steel woks more frequently, so they would get used to the heft and feel of this cookware better.
What differentiates this carbon steel wok from the others is the addition of a wooden handle on the opposite side, making it easy to toss the ingredients when you need to.
The riveted handle is also valid when carrying the wok from one spot to another, mainly because stir-fry recipes can get very heavy, and some home cooks struggle with grabbing all the weight with a single pole.
Yosukata Carbon Steel Wok
The Yosukata carbon steel is an elegant 13.5″ wok with a small flat bottom. The design is a hybrid of Chinese and Japanese works, and to us, this wok would be pure joy to work with, mainly because it is very balanced and has high walls that are proportionate with its flat bottom. The flat bottom determines the main heat point, and the smooth rounding of the walls will ensure proper heat distribution and shorter cooking times.
The traditional black color also offers a great aesthetic, so get ready to make some authentic oriental flavors at home because this wok helps lock in the flavors and juices of your ingredients. In contrast with other traditional woks, the Yosukata carbon steel wok has already been pre-seasoned at the factory and is ready for use out of the box.
The manufacturer has pre-seasoned this line of woks to up to 600°F/315.56°C, ensuring an optimum nonstick layer that should work perfectly for many cooking techniques. For example, if you struggle with deep-frying chicken and pork in woks before because the meat sticks to the bottom, you won’t have to worry about that anymore because this wok has been appropriately seasoned.
It also comes with a highly ergonomic handle, so you are comfortable cooking with the pow wok. The additional looped handle on the opposite side will allow you to stow away your wok easily, so it doesn’t take up much space in your kitchen.
Woks are more significant and bulkier than other frying pans, but this doesn’t mean that you should run out of space just because you have one or two pow woks at home. Your kitchen can remain organized and fresh even when you cook with full-sized pow woks.
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