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Quarantine Cooking: Your Essential Nonstick Cookware Guide

CBS Local

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Article Summary:

But you can cook nearly anything in a nonstick pan, and picking a high-quality pan might mean you don’t need many others.

“PTFE-based coating will release harmful fumes if it’s heated above 500 degrees, which is surprisingly easy to do, especially if you heat the pan empty, or cook just a small amount of food at a time. We always preheat nonstick pans with oil in them, rather than empty, because oil will begin to smoke well below 500 degrees,” McManus. Rather, “It’s a process that creates a harder and darker surface of aluminum oxide than is usually present on an aluminum pan. That makes the surface of the pan a little tougher, and nonreactive and it looks nice, but it’s not nonstick, and it won’t become more so through seasoning and use like cast iron or carbon steel pans can.”

While there are health concerns of cooking with aluminum, anodized aluminum is generally considered to be safe as it is sealed and doesn’t interact with acid the way typical aluminum does. McManus explains, “Don’t thermally shock it, meaning don’t send it from very hot to cold-like running a hot pan under a cold tap; that encourages any pan to warp. Don’t put it in the dishwasher; the harsh soap can wear off nonstick and other objects joggling against the pan surface during the wash cycle also can damage the coating.” It’s suggested to avoid abrasive scrubbers while cleaning as well.

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