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Jun 16, 2010 06:48 AM

Update on Copper Cookware

To recap I was torn between the enamel cast iron or a thin set of unused tin lined copper at a great price. I got the copper. They are thinner than the SS I am used to and the tin isn't too appitizing looking.

I cleaned them all up pretty, but that tin lining was really throwing me off. It was like a standoff, they were there waiting to be used and I was just looking at them trying to get past that unshiny, ugly-ish lining. I finally made breakfast in them this a.m. and have to say they sure get hot fast. I kept the temp lower than usual.

I kept watching for the eggs to turn black or grey or something, lol, but they came out great. I am surprised that they didn't stick at all, and how wonderful they tasted, like I never had eggs before! It's hard to describe the difference, maybe...a cleaner or more vivid flavor? I'll think of something really yummy to try out in the large pot for tonight, like a ratatouille.

I have to say I am a convert and will keep looking for pieces here and there when I can afford them. Thanks for all your great advice!!

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  1. Properly tinned surfaces are infinitely smoother both to the eye and at the molecular level than stainless steel.

    Tinned copper cookware of 2.0 to 2.5mm+ in thickness and well made will always be the gold standard in cookware.

    1. I am glad the copper cookware is working out for you. Thanks for your update from the previous post.

      7 Replies
      1. re: Chemicalkinetics

        Quite a shock to realize that State-of-the-Art in cookware 400 years ago is the same as it is today. But--Shhhhhssssshh, that doesn't sell every family a new set of Superduperallcladmonocuisinartcreuset every 5 years.

        When you need retinning (and not before the total area of exposed copper approaches a 25-cent piece in area), send your stuff to Peter at Rock Mountain Retinning in Denver. It's STILL cheaper than "The Next Greatest Innovation"

        1. re: kaleokahu

          Yes, sometime it is interesting to sit back and realize that the many of the best cookware are very similar to those of hundreds of year ago. The fit and finish is better, but the heart and soul of the cookware are the same.

          I will say aluminum cookware is probably the most useful new age cookware invention. Sure, its heat conduction is not as good copper, but it is closer to it than any other cookware materials. It is cheap, so it is now possible for average households to own a high thermal conduction cookware.

          1. re: Chemicalkinetics

            Yes, aluminum (118 btu/hr-ft) is closer to copper (223 btu/hr-ft) than is steel (8 btu/hr-ft) or cast iron (46 btu/hr-ft), but not very close at all to copper. Given the health concerns with uncoated and "nonstick" aluminum, I'd take issue with your conclusion about technological progress and stick with cast iron if I couldn't afford copper.

            There's also the oft-ignored issue of aluminum INCREASING its thermal conductivity with increasing cooking heat, whereas aluminum slightly DECREASES, making copper more controllable and predictable at all temperatures.

            1. re: kaleokahu

              You really love copper, don't you? :)

              Well, if you knock aluminum off, then what else do we have in term of modern cookware invention?

              1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                The pressure cooker, crock pot, electric skillet, and the telephone (to order-in).

                1. re: E_M

                  :) I especially agree with the pressure cooker and telephone.

                2. re: Chemicalkinetics

                  You could tell? I'm an open book to you!.

                  But to answer your substantive question, no, we don't have much in the way of modern cookware invention, at least in terms of materials. I guess we know today about bonding dissimilar metals, anodizing and the evil PTFE coatings.

                  Pressure cooker and microwave? I have them but seldom use the latter, and never the former.