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Jan 21, 2008 07:12 PM

Boil milk in the new stainless steel kettle before first use?

I've seen it here and there, and probably not just for stainless steel, but metal in general. Can someone tell me the logic behind it?

(I have heard that milk is DEATH for those beautiful crystal Riedel wine this also true?)

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  1. really? i've never heard that before, but it's an interesting concept. milk is used as a treatment to remove heavy metals and excess iron in some patients, so perhaps the reasoning is that the milk will chelate any unbound metal ions, which will then get washed away before you ingest anything prepared in the kettle or pot.

    1. I've not heard that either. Milk is very slighty acidic, I can't imagine that it would harm any kind of crystal. Typically glass is harmed only by the relatively uncommon hydrofluoric acid and strong solutions of phosphate type compounds.

      I would think that a good quality SS kettle would be made with a very nonreactive form of SS and would not need anything other a good washing to removing dust and oils picked up shipping and display -- any residue from manufacturing should have been neutralized at the factory.

      1. Goodhealthgourmet, when you say the patients are treated with milk, do you mean by drinking it? It sounds interesting.

        Renov8r, I always thought the glass is quite neutral, but I'm pretty sure there was a thread long long ago where it was said that the crystal stemwares would be unfit for quality wine drinking once it's been used for milk. It's probably something that my untrained palate will not detect. Maybe we can get Melanie Wong to offer her opinion on this.

        "...Typically glass is harmed only by the relatively uncommon hydrofluoric acid and strong solutions of phosphate type compounds...."

        Where and in what would the hydrofluoric acid and phosphate solutions be found? Harsh detergents?

        As for the use of milk, I think at least for the stove top moka pots, there's usually instruction to wash thoroughly with warm water and mild soap, and then to use milk instead of water to run the pot a couple of times (and discard) before making the coffee for drinking. Hasn't anyone else seen that ?

        8 Replies
        1. re: HLing

          yes, anyone who ingests heavy metals should immediately drink milk. the metal ions will immediately act on the milk proteins, denaturing them instead of damaging the proteins in the tissues of the mouth, esophagus & stomach. you can then induce vomiting to clear the poisons - which are now bound to the milk - out of the body.

          pretty cool, huh?

            1. re: goodhealthgourmet


              Not very chowish, but still trying to figure out how milk would ruin a glass...

              1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                What "heavy metals" and how do we know they aren't the ones where we are not supposed to induce vomiting?
                I think it's cooler headed to call poison control.

                1. re: MakingSense

                  i wasn't suggesting we do it ourselves! i was simply postulating that the principle behind the treatment - which is used by hospital and emergency professionals - might be the reasoning for boiling milk in a kettle before using it.

                  1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                    Boiling milk in a new kettle sounds like a recipe for a cleaning disaster to me. If you boil milk in a saucepan, it leaves a pretty thick, sticky residue that must be scrubbed off. Scrubbing the inside of a kettle isn't easy, so why would you want to *boil* milk in one?

                    1. re: Hungry Celeste

                      i agree - the OP said it, not me :) i was trying to find a justification for it because it doesn't make sense to me from a culinary standpoint. i have scary visions of boiling milk bubbling out of the spout and all over the stove.

                      1. re: Hungry Celeste


                        I think it did at least get rid of the metal smell after I boiled the milk. I took it off the stove when it whistled. This pot is pretty easily cleaned if i needed, but actually, there were no sticky residue at all.