Copper utensils are one of the most prized possessions of the kitchen. They are aesthetically pleasing and offer a wide range of health benefits, which is why we must add them to our collection of cookware. And copper utensils aren’t something new to our generation either!
You must have seen copper utensils in many households that our elders have used for a very long time. Nowadays, you can spot them in some restaurants offering cultural and ethnic cuisines in India. There is a very scientific explanation for why we have used copper cookware and utensils in the past for cooking and storing our meals. First, it was the first element humans used to cook and store food in. Secondly, it offers many health benefits that other conventional cookware and utensils don't possess.
Do you remember our elders drinking water first thing in the morning? Good quality copper utensils are a bit on the expensive side, but this expense comes with a lot of health benefits which is why we should start using them.
Some common health benefits offered by copper utensils over other conventional utensils:
- Tamra Jal, or water stored in a copper utensil, is touted as the ultimate remedy to many maladies by Ayurveda. It is known to balance the Kapha, Pitta, and Vata forces in our bodies. Copper is one of the essential minerals required by the body but in very minute quantities. Drinking copper-infused water acts as a natural antioxidant and helps in keeping our immunity strong and ageing at bay. Studies say that to get the desired effect, one should keep the water inside the copper vessel for 16-48 hours.
- Copper is a known antibacterial agent. Many studies have proved its germ-killing property. It can kill 99% of disease-causing germs and protect us from various common infections like cholera, typhoid, etc. Using copper utensils is of immense importance as it can help maintain good health.
- Copper is a good conductor of heat; hence it cooks food evenly. Moreover, the food remains warm for an extended period if appropriately stored in copper vessels.
- Other benefits of copper utensils are balancing the thyroid hormone, maintaining haemoglobin levels, preventing cancer and ageing-related issues, regulating cholesterol levels, maintaining bone health, and preventing hypertension.
- Regular use of copper utensils and cookware boosts immunity levels, keeping common health issues like cough, cold, stomach ache at bay.
Cooking In Copper Utensils
A good quality copper vessel can prove to be your best friend in the kitchen. Since it is a good conductor of heat and electricity, it can enhance the cooking process, thus fastening your cooking time. Copper also heats uniformly, so you don't have to fret about getting your food burned or scalded with this cookware. Cooking in copper utensils should be done in moderate to low heat, as it doesn't require too much heat. We all know that food tastes better when cooked slowly and gently over medium to low heat.
Cleaning Your Copper Utensils
Cleaning your copper utensils is relatively easy, and you can keep them shining for a long time if you follow specific rules with them. The best thing is, copper revives itself after each proper wash and remains durable for longer periods.
Dos and Don'ts Of Cleaning Copper Utensils
- Copper utensils are generally lined with tin, making them non-sticky; however, it has a very low melting point that can quickly come off if you scrub it too hard. Do not clean or rub your copper utensils with steel ladles or other abrasive cleaners. This will remove the coating from them and can cause deformation of your favourite cookware. While cooking, always use a wooden spoon and clean these utensils with soft scrub without applying too much pressure.
- For cleaning copper vessels, combine lemon juice and baking soda and mix it well like a liquid detergent. Now clean the copper utensils using this solution for perfect cleaning and shine of your cookware. Alternatively, you can also use vinegar and salt solution with the same procedure. Remember not to use too much scrubbing as it may damage the utensils.
- Other simple kitchen products that you can use to clean copper utensils are tamarind water, tomato slices, salt, and lemon. Slice a piece of lemon and put salt over it. Now start rubbing gently over the utensils and wash them off.
- Another common cleaning product to clean copper utensils is Pitambari, readily available in the Indian market. It removes the oil and dirt and makes the utensils squeaky clean, and shiny. It is pretty cheap and also very gentle on the hands. You can clean the copper utensils by mixing the Pitambari powder with water and gently washing them off.
- Also, avoid cleaning them while your copper cookware is still hot. This ruins the surface of the copperware and results in blemishing of the utensils. After removing them from the gas stove, let them cool for some time, and then clean them gently.
Copper utensils add glamour and a dash of royalty to your kitchen. They come with a higher price tag, but you won't regret buying them after you start cooking in them and realise how it is different from other conventional cookware. However, to keep them untainted and well-preserved for a long time is in your own hands. Just follow some basic rules of cooking and cleaning with copper utensils, and they will stay unblemished for extended periods. You must always buy good quality copper cookware as low quality copper cookware is prone to oxidation if some acidic food is kept in them, harming your health. Invest in good quality copper cookware and feel the difference for yourself.