I've got a cheap Farberware cooking pot that I've been using heavily for several years. I clean it after using it, usually, and its inner surface still looks pretty good. I use one of those tough green scouring pads (nylon I guess?), with a bit of ordinary liquid dish soap, to clean it. This scratches it up and often seems to actually remove enough material from its surface to turn the cleaning water grayish. I figure steel can take this much abuse.
But when I look up cleaning tips for stainless steel cookware, I see some complicated stuff about using baking soda or vinegar or Bar Keepers Friend, plus various sorts of soaking, boiling, etc., to carefully remove burnt stuff and stains without scratching your cooking surface. And sometimes I see the instruction not to use tough scouring pads at all because they'll scratch. My method is simpler, and it has never failed me, so I like it better. But am I hurting my pot? Am I very slightly poisoning myself with metal powder somehow? Will I eventually grind through the steel and reach non-food-safe aluminum or whatever, or would that take like a century? I'm more curious here than worried, mind you. Maybe all I'm reading about trying not to scratch your stuff is just for keeping the surface looking super-pretty and new-looking?
posted by Koray
on Apr 14, 2014 -
Since we are moving soon and already have tons of stuff to move, a couple of family member are considering getting us a gift card for cookware. We have a bunch of cruddy old stuff that we won't be moving, and it'd be great to replace some of these things with items of reasonable quality. However, places like Williams-Sonoma and Sur la Table are very expensive. Is there another good choice for a place to shop in person with a gift card? We live in the San Francisco Bay Area. [more inside]
posted by wintersweet
on Nov 13, 2013 -
So I heated my trusty 24cm LeCreuset frying pan for pre-frying some eggplant today, and now there are some moon-like craters on it... [more inside]
posted by Namlit
on Oct 31, 2013 -
Do you have an enameled Lodge dutch oven? Do you use it a lot? How has it held up? Can it compare to Le Creuset? [more inside]
posted by lunasol
on Oct 23, 2013 -
My wife got a paella pan at a yard sale! Sweet. She is totally looking forward to using it to make seafood-less paella because she's allergic. How can we prep the pan for this? [more inside]
posted by infinitewindow
on May 25, 2013 -
I've ruined my All-Clad non-stick frying pans. Help me find some new ones that I can't hurt. [more inside]
posted by Leezie
on Mar 21, 2012 -
Rookie Mistakes with New Cookware Filter: I was so excited to use my shiny new enamel Le Creuset oven pan that I forgot to wash it before using it to roast some vegetables. Aside from probably getting some warehouse dust in my food, is this in any way dangerous / unsafe?
posted by a small part of the world
on Feb 21, 2012 -
Cooking popcorn with vegetable oil is discoloring my stainless steel pan. It leaves a dark yellowish stain both inside and outside around the rim. Is this a reaction with the metal? Is there a way to avoid this happening? And most importantly, is there a way to remove this discoloration? Scrubbing does nothing.
posted by stopgap
on Dec 8, 2011 -
We're moving back to the UK (London) from the US (SoCal) in a few months. What would you stock up on if you were us? Much more detail about our tastes and situation inside... [more inside]
posted by crabintheocean
on Jul 28, 2011 -
Is the "All Clad Stainless Steel 4-Quart Brown and Braise Pan
" ($120 at Amazon) the same as the "All-Clad Stainless-Steel 4-Quart Saute Pan
" ($225), just with a different lid? One reviewer says it's exactly the same, but the other reviewer says it has the diameter of their "3-quart saute pan
" ($200), and is deeper. Who's right? And why is it so much less expensive than either of the sauté pans? Is it the accent aigu
? I like the domed lid and the low price, but mostly want the large evenly-heating expanse of bare metal you get from All Clad. My turn-ons include braising turkey thighs and long walks on the beach.
posted by jcrcarter
on Jan 28, 2011 -
My question has already been asked
, but that was six years ago and I'm wondering what's changed since then. So: is there a good way to recycle nonstick cookware nowadays? [more inside]
posted by brett
on Jan 8, 2011 -
What color Le Crueset should I order if I hope to be able to purchase more matching pots in the (most likely distant) future? [more inside]
posted by moshimosh
on Jan 5, 2011 -
I'm considering buying a set of pots for someone who is very tough on his cookware. What kind of pots will best stand up to abuse? [more inside]
posted by arnicae
on Nov 29, 2010 -
At a house sale here in northern Thailand I picked up a MicroMax Microwave Hamburger/Sandwich Grill for the princely sum of one dollar. It's in like new condition but there were no accompanying instructions. Imprinted on the bottom is the notice, "See instructions for preheat and cooking times...DO NOT EXCEED." I wrote to the manufacturer Nordic Ware who replied that since the item was discontinued, they couldn't provide instructions. Does anyone else in AskMeFi land have one of these devices? Any input for times to create a fine grilled ham and cheese sandwich or tuna melt would be appreciated. Perhaps you may have found or created interesting recipes for the MicroMax? Those would be most welcome also. Many thanks.
posted by thaivagabond
on Nov 12, 2010 -
We're getting married, and we're registering at Bed, Bath and Beyond for the usual housewares, but we need advice about cookware. [more inside]
posted by Allenthar
on Oct 17, 2010 -
I'll soon have the opportunity to outfit a new kitchen entirely from scratch. Recommend me some great cookware and cook's tools! [more inside]
posted by ixohoxi
on Apr 20, 2010 -
I made some lentil soup earlier in my cast-iron dutch-oven/pot. It's a new pot and I've seasoned it once and that seemed to do a good job. Anyway, I had a bowl of my soup as soon as it was ready, but I just went back to the stove to pack the leftovers up and clean the pot and the soup has turned from a muddy green broth to a dark sludge, nearly black. [more inside]
posted by Evstar
on Mar 7, 2010 -
I am the proud new owner of an All-Clad 12" skillet. It's awesome. However, after a week—and four uses or so—my new pan has greasy-looking spots in the cooking surface that won't come off even when I scrub pretty vigorously. What is this? Is there anything I can do about it? Is it even a problem?
posted by sonic meat machine
on Mar 6, 2010 -
So I've got a Calphalon One non-stick fry pan, and the non-stick coating is starting to disintegrate. What are my options? [more inside]
posted by Oops
on Nov 12, 2009 -
How do I drill a small hole in an enamel-covered cast iron pot lid? I'd prefer not to chip the enamel, but it would be acceptable if I do. I need a 1/8-inch hole. What type of drill bit do you recommend?
posted by judytaos
on Sep 30, 2009 -
I left my new non-stick pan on the hot stove with nothing in it. Is it ruined? [more inside]
posted by TSGlenn
on Jun 21, 2009 -
What are the dangers and benefits of non stick cookware (teflon/generic teflon type)? It's obviously healthier to cook without using lots of oil, but I've heard rumors of health problems such as cancer being linked to long term use of non stick pans. [more inside]
posted by thewalrus
on Mar 22, 2009 -
I'm in the market for some better cooking tools. What kitchenware would you swear by? What should no good kitchen be without? [more inside]
posted by katillathehun
on Nov 15, 2008 -
Just bought a set of Calphalon hard-anodized cookware and I'm having a terrible time getting food not to stick to the pan when cooking. The problem is particularly bad when cooking eggs- strategies for getting food to not stick to these pans?
posted by mhaw
on Oct 23, 2008 -
I am transitioning to a Calphalon stainless cooking set, but everything is sticking to the pans, despite much olive oil. What are some tricks from moving from teflon/non-stick to stainless steel on a gas range?
posted by plexi
on Sep 28, 2008 -
help me put a name to this
utensil so I may be able to replace it. I have tried all local sources, and the I haven't the time to go from site to site trolling.
We generally use it to melt butter, warm sauces etc., and I find it extremely useful, but everywhere I look, I am referred to butter warmers, and they are much too big. [more inside]
posted by rudy26
on Aug 1, 2008 -
When my roommate moved out last week, she left some things behind for me and the new roommate. Among those things was an Object I found in one of the kitchen cupboards -- and when we found it, me, my new roommate, and his father studied it for a full three minutes, and we cannot figure out what this object actually is. [more inside]
posted by EmpressCallipygos
on Jun 4, 2008 -
Are these pinholes in the enamel surface of my new Staub cookware normal or flaws? [more inside]
posted by tula
on Jan 3, 2008 -
Thanks to my own stupidity, I managed to get two saucepans stuck one inside the other, with the lower one apparently containing a cavity of lower pressure holding the upper pan in place. Is there any way to get them apart without causing injury or property damage? [more inside]
posted by dw
on Dec 5, 2007 -
Non-Stick pans and Cancer. I'm afraid to use my flaking teflon pans because of the cancer risk that I have heard rumor of. What is the safest, healthiest cookware to buy? [more inside]
posted by boots77
on Dec 1, 2007 -
In a moment of epic dumbassery, I turned on the wrong burner this morning and managed to melt part of a spatula to an $80 calphalon fry pan.
If it wasn't coated, I'd just use steel wool. Is there any way to get the melted plastic off? How fucked am I?
Can I heat it up again? If so, how should I do it?
posted by klangklangston
on Sep 14, 2007 -
I bought a cast iron skillet. Rubbed it with oil. 300 F oven for 1 hour. I neglected to clean it in soapy water prior. What has been indelibly burned into my skillet? Should I go to the emergency room now or should I save time and just start start organizing my affairs? [more inside]
posted by stuart_s
on Jul 19, 2007 -