Solutions for common problems with stainless steel cookware

To cook well and not only expertly, you need qualities, attitude, technique, practice and also tools! Sometimes we forget, and we assume that with a good knife and a table, we are ready; however, as in any “trade,” with the right tools, the work will not only be better, but it will also simplify the task.

The advantage of Stainless steel cookwares and pans lies in their versatility – it is a workhorse that goes from a stove to an oven to a sink full of water for easy cleaning, all without damaging the pan. Not to mention that the surface allows the food to develop a great crust, even leaving tasty golden bits ideal for making a sauce. The disadvantage, however, is that it has neither the easy cleaning of non-stick cookware or the cheap durability of cast iron. These are some of the solutions to common problems with stainless steel.

Problem: Foods stick to the pan

Solution: The trick for preventing food from sticking is to heat the pan until it is hot before adding the oil – and then add the food. The steel expands and contracts when it is hot when it comes into contact with a colder temperature, so the food sticks to the surface. By adding oil to the pan when it is hot, the steel becomes static, resulting in a temporary non-stick coating.

Problem: white chalk spotssa

Solution: This is usually caused by an accumulation of calcium found in water. Remove by boiling a solution of 1 part vinegar and three parts water. Let it cool entirely, then wash and dry as usual.

Problem: stuck dry food drills

Solution: If scrubbing in the Stainless steel plates does not work (only use nonabrasive cleaners and sponges), fill it with enough water and soap to submerge the caked bits. Bring the water to a boil, then scrape the bits. Once the water has cooled, the dried pieces should be washed immediately.

Problem: surface bites

Solution: Water salted in a stainless steel pot that has not come to a boil can lead to pitting, which is a form of oxidation. The scientific explanation of why this occurs has to do with the interaction of chloride in salt, oxygen in water and chromium in stainless steel. Forget the elimination of the pit, but avoid the future with just salt the water once it has reached a boil. At that temperature, there is not enough oxygen in the water for the reaction that causes bites to take place.

Problem: Discoloration

Solution: Stains that become visible to be embedded in the surface – typically a rainbow hue – are usually the result of overheating. Specialty nonabrasive cleaners designed to restore stainless steel or for stain removal should do the trick, but cooking foods high in acid such as ketchup or washing the pan with the vinegar may also help.

Problem: Water spots

Solution: Dry immediately after washing to put an end to these otherwise harmless spots. To remove them, moisten the surface of the pan, sprinkle baking soda on a damp sponge, then rub the clean surface and rinse.

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