Help us save our copper-bottomed frypan!
My husband, the new chef, burned the inner metal while cooking. Is there anything to soak away the burnt black color? Thanks, in advance, for your help.
I've found if you boil some water in it for about 15 minures drain and then soak it in a solution of baking soda and water...enough baking soda to make a fairly thick paste and then scrub it with a nylon scrubber most burnt marks come out. I've also read that adding some powdered dishwashing soap to the water when boiling and then scrubbing is also a good way to remove burnt marks on pans.
I've found Bar Keeper's Friend to work very well on metal cookware. Use your oldest scrubbie though - some chemical reaction happens when this stuff gets wet and the scrubbie will stink and you'll want to throw it away.
You may have melted away the tin lining which is very easy to do wiith copper pans. The black you see may be tarnished copper. If this is the case there is nothing to do except to send it away to be retinned. Copper is toxic and should not come into direct contact with your food, particularly anything acidic.
Fill your pan most of the way with water and a good bit of dishwasher powder (the kind for an electric DW) and boil it for awhile. Do not use Bar Keeper's Friend if there is any chance that the lining might be tin. Tin is soft and will be damaged.
If your pan is tin-lined, the water won't get above about 212 degrees or so anyway so if the tinning is still there and not ruined, you'll be OK. If it's already melted and/or ruined, you'll see the raw copper when the black gunk is dissolved away by the DW/water combo. Then you'll have to get it retinned.
If your frypan has a different surface, the DW powder/water combo should boil off the gunk without all the scrubbing. You may have to finish the fine work with a little BKF.
May take a little while if the new chef has done a real number on it. Patience is a virtue.
A related question: If you burn a Calphalon pan (as I did the other day) is it actually dangerous to use it? Or just annoying beacause things start sticking?