White gas, and good cook wear.
I use a brunton vapor AF stove. I can use it with isobutane canisters or white gas (and a host of other fuels).
It has a throttle on the fuel pump and another at the stove itself. The MSR Dragonfly has this 2 throttle setup also. I've found it makes a huge difference because I restrict the fuel bottle to 50% flow, then micro adjust at the stove. In other words, how fine a control I have at the stove is a function of how open the fuel bottle valve is.
I'll second cheap cookware as a problem. Most aluminim made for backpacking (not dutch ovens, for example) is too thin to disperse heat, which AL does poorly anyway.
Another good technique is the double boiler. A double boiler can help limit the high end temp if you need to simmer. I do a lot of steam baking and that requires a fine simmer, so it's definitely possible.
for what it's worth, I can do it on my ancient coleman white gas stove, but it's a real bear on the few propane stoves I've tried. For me, propane is a grill fuel only.