Pan Out

This new cookware has all your problems solved

The perfect sear is hard to come by. Nothing beats a cast-iron pan to get the job done, but ours (we're embarrassed to say) has collected some rust over the years.

We've tried other cookware that claims to be of a sear-friendly, nonstick pedigree–only to realize our folly through a blackened, unscrubbable crust of deceit.

So it was with no small degree of skepticism that we decided to give Unison, the new line of pans from Calphalon, a go. Lo and behold, steaks and scallops came out with a perfect sear–and the pan stays crust-free.

The secret is in the hard-anodized aluminum pan's two surfaces: The first is textured to facilitate an optimal sear (as well as great caramelization), while the second ensures effortless removal. There won't be much to clean up, but the pan's also dishwasher-safe, just in case. We wish we could say the same about cast iron.

If you decide you embrace the new, Calphalon will even help you get rid of the old. Each set of Unison cookware comes with an extra box (and a prepaid FedEx label) for you to send all of those wannabes straight to recycling.