Stainless Steel linings for copper cookware

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Joined Aug 11, 2000
Would like some help from the knowledgeable and experienced out there concerning the facts about stainless steel linings in copper cookware. I know tin is traditionally used, but requires re-tinning (getting harder to find this service?) once it wears out. I've read that stainless steel is more costly, lasts longer, and is easier to clean, but some state it's a 'waste of money', as it doesn't transmit heat as efficiently as tin. Practically speaking, since the metal lining layer is so thin, aren't stainless steel lined still great cookware?? Is the lessened efficiency that bad, or do the detractors of this lining just prefer tin?? Your help would be appreciated, as I'd like to invest in some copper cookware.
 
33
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Joined Aug 18, 1999
Of course stainless steel is the best lining for copper. The copper itself heats evenly and transmits its heat to the steel. I have two Mauviel - one saute pan and a 12" fry pan and they are a pleasure to use. My old tin lined pans rarely come out of the closet any more. By the way, can anyone suggest a good copper cleaner? My copper looks terrible again two days after I clean it.
 
57
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Joined Aug 11, 2000
Hi Ruthy -
Thanks for your input. I've had other feedback on other websites that split 50/50
over tin vs. stainless steel. With the air quality problems re-tinning presents, I think
stainless will win out. Also, from another site, got a vote for the German product
'Flitz' as the 'best' for cleaning copper, brass, silver, etc. "It's a marine product made for boat care. Expensive but great
stuff." I've never heard of it, nor seen it. I've asked for details and will pass them on.
 
57
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Joined Aug 11, 2000
Thanks Dick - I've been using 'Twinkle"
copper cleaner. I'll see if I can find the German product and do a comparison
as well...
 
57
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Joined Aug 11, 2000
Thanks for the Flitz source Dick, but I fortunately found a source a bit closer to me (PacNorWest; but sure do miss the direct access to my 'namesakes'), and the prices are within $0.50, which is gratifying.
 
2,550
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Joined Mar 13, 2001
I would like to bring this discussion back on track, if it's okay.

I have both, and have always understood that my tin saucepans are superior for certain kinds of sauces. Stainless steel is for sure more lasting, but presumably either affects the taste or changes the way foods cook in some way that tin does not.

I have access to one of the major distributors of very high quality copperware from Villedieu (France). All his export copperware is steel-clad. He tells me that when the manufacturers come over to visit him from France they scoff at the mostly American market that uses and demands steel-clad copper. They say they must change their production some small number of days each month to change to steel: they hate it but are unable to ignore this huge American market. The point is they consider tin-clad copper to be far superior and manufacture tin-clad pots most days of the month for the European chef market. They consider Tin-clad copper superior.

Any thoughts?
 
211
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Joined May 18, 2001
In the dozen or so professional kitchens that I've spent time in in France, only one used copper pots on a routine basis, and these were stainless steel lined. Mine in California are all stainless lined and they seem to cook fine. I have used tin-lined pots on a couple of occassion and I couldn't really tell the difference.

As to what is the best polish... I don't polish mine. They seem to work just as well with a dull patina as with a bright one. Around here the preferred polish for polishing large expanses of copped quickly is a product called Red Bear. The active ingredient, i believe, is oxalic acid.

If you'd like to see other information I've gathered on copped pots, including how to get them cheaply and how this whole heat transfer thing works, click here.

BTW, where I think copper really has an advantage over other types of pots is for saucepans and sauté pans. For frying pans I prefer nonstick, industrial aluminum and for stock pots stainless with a thick aluminum base.
 
211
10
Joined May 18, 2001
In the dozen or so professional kitchens that I've spent time in in France, only one used copper pots on a routine basis, and these were stainless steel lined. Mine in California are all stainless lined and they seem to cook fine. I have used tin-lined pots on a couple of occassion and I couldn't really tell the difference.

As to what is the best polish... I don't polish mine. They seem to work just as well with a dull patina as with a bright one. Around here the preferred polish for polishing large expanses of copped quickly is a product called Red Bear. The active ingredient, I believe, is oxalic acid.

If you'd like to see other information I've gathered on copped pots, including how to get them cheaply and how this whole heat transfer thing works, click here.

BTW, where I think copper really has an advantage over other types of pots is for saucepans and sauté pans. For frying pans I prefer nonstick, industrial aluminum and for stock pots stainless with a thick aluminum base.

[ May 19, 2001: Message edited by: bouland ]
 
4,450
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Joined Aug 4, 2000
Two other copper cleaners that I've used are RED BEAR (Bjorn Rioia), found at some gourmet shops, and BARKEEPER'S FRIEND, sold at Kmart next to the dutch cleanser. ;)
 
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Joined Nov 29, 2013
Just look in your pantry.  Use a paste of salt and vinegar; you won't even have to worry about strange chemicals.
 
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