Le Creuset – Flame Kitchenwear

Le Creu 5

A number of years ago turning twenty-one was a big deal. Even though I benefitted from the 1970 reduction of the the age of majority from twenty-one to eighteen, in June 1979, my parents hosted an amazing forty-eight hour 21st house party to celebrate.

I received some amazing gifts but at the time two, a larger and a smaller, orange (called “Flame”) Le Creuset saucepans seemed a little odd. They were a gift from my Great Aunt Molly – a huge favourite of mine – who regular readers may remember from my Mini post – to refresh your memories please see here – Mini – the best selling car in Britain

My Aunt, with her usual style, said to me flicking the ash from a Consulate Menthol, that I may not appreciate her gift right away but in years to come she assured me they would be more reliable than virtually anything. Of course, she was right. Aside from the odd chip, some rust and engrained burned milk they are virtually as good today as when they were given to me – nearly forty years ago!

So who makes these iconic and tough heavyweight saucepans? The Le Creuset (French for “cauldron”) business was founded in 1925 in the Northern French town of Fresnoy-le-Grand (Picardy) by two Belgians, Armand Desaegher, a casting specialist and Octave Aubecq  an enamelling specialist. They produced their first “cocotte” (casserole pan) the same year. The signature colour of Flame enamel glaze was used for the first time with their first production run and it is said that this colour derived from the molten cast iron used for its manufacture. Current owner Paul Van Zuydam purchased the Le Creuset business in 1987.

Le Creu 1

Raymond Loewy, the renowned French-born American industrial designer, produced a range of iconic and highly collectable  for Le Creuset in the 1950’s.
Le_Creuset
Since the mid-1990’s Le Creuset have extended their brand and ranges with the addition of new products in stainless steel, stoneware, enamel on steel, textiles and aluminium. The beautiful colours now offered are vibrant. The salt and pepper grinders, kettles, ramekins and coffee mugs are also reflective of the wonderful traditions of Le Creuset.
Whilst some production occurs in China and Thailand, we are told all Le Creuset cast iron cookware is still manufactured in the company’s foundry in Fresnoy-le-Grand using their 12 step finishing process to ensure there no flaws or imperfections in the final product. My only advise is to ensure you don’t use metal utensils when stirring your killer sauce. The metal will scratch the internal surface of the pan and invalidate the Limited Lifetime Warranty – always use wood or silicone kitchen utensils.
As a keen cook I can highly recommend these amazing products. If you’d like to add to your kitchen can I suggest that you click the following AMAZON link to a variety of Le Creuset’s products:

Le Creuset Stoneware Rainbow Egg Cups – Multicolour, Set of 6
Le Creuset Stoneware Rainbow Espresso Mugs – Set of 6

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Image credits – Le Creuset

 

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