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Netherton Wok is BEST BUY in the Independent

Netherton Wok is BEST BUY in the Independent

The best wok? Well The Independent thinks so.

In a review of the 12 best woks, the Netherton Foundry 13" wok came out as their "best buy".
"Suitable for all hobs, this excellent flat-bottomed wok from British cookware producers Netherton Foundry was a unanimous favourite."
If you want to see the rest of their review and what they thought of the other 11, you can read it all here: Suitable for all hobs, this excellent flat-bottomed wok from British cookware producers Netherton Foundry was a unanimous favourite.
And you can see our full range of woks here:

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12 best woks

Whip up your speedy stir-fry dinner in one of these traditional Chinese pan 

A good wok means dinner is on the table in a matter of minutes. But should you go round or flat-bottomed? Non-stick or untreated carbon steel?

Purists may say only round-bottomed woks are allowed, but they’re only suitable to high-powered gas flames so anyone with an induction, halogen or electric hob misses out on the fun. If you’ve got gas, go for a round-bottomed wok with a single long handle, as the pan will heat quicker, food moves freely and you can toss the ingredients over a hot flame. Flat-bottomed woks suit all other hobs, are more stable, and will still make a tasty dinner.

Most often used for stir-fries, woks are actually incredibly versatile and should also be pulled out the cupboard to deep-fry, steam, poach, toast nuts, or even try home smoking. If you regularly cook for four people, get a large wok about 30cm or more. Bigger is always better, as it avoids overcrowding ingredients and steaming rather than frying them.


Woks are either carbon steel, spun or cast iron, or forged aluminium. The carbon steel variety heat quickly, but spun iron and forged aluminium heat more evenly. If you want something light, hot and nimble go for carbon steel or spun iron, and if you want a robust kitchen workhorse, try forged aluminium.

These versatile pans either have a non-stick coating, or are untreated carbon steel or iron. Non-stick woks are low maintenance and good for hectic households, but they won’t last forever, as the coating can scratch or wear out. They can’t stand high heat like uncoated carbon steel and iron, and you must use plastic utensils. Pick PFOA-free non-stick coatings where possible. Non-treated carbon steel woks require seasoning before use, but if you’ve got 20 minutes and a decent extractor fan it’s worth it for the satisfaction and improved natural non-stick, or patina, that develops with every meal. That said, non-stick woks also require conditioning with oil on first use, so all woks need a little extra care to keep them in top condition.

A good wok has wok hei; a direct translation is 2wok thermal radiation”, or more metaphorically “breath of the wok”, which is how well it transfers heat from the wok metal to the food. Good wok hei lends a distinctive smoky flavour, charred on the outside and cooked on-point. “Most people overcook things in the wok,” says chef Jeremy Pang. “Stir fries should take no longer than five minutes, which is why we chop ingredients up so finely. Make sure your wok is really hot, and layer ingredients into the wok rather than just throwing everything in at the same time.”

With this in mind, our panel tested each wok with two stir-fries (meat and veg) and egg-fried rice, and judged the wok against criteria for heat, ease of use, and end results on the food.

Tips for cooking with a wok

  • Use chef Jeremy Pang’s "wok clock" method: organise prepared ingredients on the counter in a clockwise circle so they’re ready in the order you’re going to cook them
  • Avoid using ingredients straight from the fridge, unless the recipe states otherwise. Very cold ingredients bring the wok temperature down and impact cooking time
  • The heat source should be the same size as the base of your non-stick wok, otherwise it may burn the handle or damage the sides of the wok
  • Always use oil with a high smoke point, like vegetable, sunflower or rapeseed oil
  • Store your wok with a piece of kitchen roll inside to avoid scratches and damage

Netherton Foundry Spun Iron Wok, 33cm: £60, Netherton Foundry













Suitable for all hobs, this excellent flat-bottomed wok from British cookware producers Netherton Foundry was a unanimous favourite. It’s spun iron, so has all the durability and heat retention of cast iron without the weight. The wok is pre-seasoned with flax oil, so it’s ready to use immediately. It has an incredible natural non-stick finish, which only gets better with age and means you can turn up the heat or use metal implements without a worry, as long as you clean and dry it properly after each use. The wok is just 1mm thin, so it heated up quickly, gave egg-fried rice a perfect charred finish and cooked larger stir-frys evenly in the capacious 33cm body. The oak handle was comfortable to hold. It’s a flawless high-quality, handcrafted wok that will last for years.     CLICK HERE TO SEE ALL NETHERTON WOKS

CLICK HERE TO READ THE ARTICLE IN FULL AND SEE ALL 12 WOKS         Copyright The Independent 2019

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