Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Stainless Cookware Or Aluminum Cookware?

Aluminum is preferred by some people, while others are more enamored with stainless. The following will go over the pros and cons of each and help you determine which one is best for you.
Stainless Steel Pros
Essentially, stainless steel is iron with the addition of as many as eight alloys. The more alloys included, the higher the quality. Chromium must make up at least 11% of the metal for it to qualify as stainless steel. This lowers the possibility of rusting from exposure to air or moisture.
This king of metal is very resistant and durable and resists to almost any kind of scratches. Stainless cookware is also easy to clean.
Stainless steel is very durable and is almost completely resistant to scratches. Cleaning it is also easy and doesn't take long to do.
Stainless cookware is preferred by cooks over aluminum. Why? Acidic or alkaline foods aren't responded to by stainless steel when cooking them.

Aluminum Pros
The end of the 19th century was when the production of aluminum cookware began, but took awhile before it became popular. Aluminum cookware accounts for over 50% of all cookware sales. It's ability to quickly heat and being inexpensive has been the source of it's popularity.

Aluminum cookware comes in 3 different types: anodized, cast, and pressed.
Anodized is considered to be the best, but as you would expect costs more than any other too. They are non-stick, resistant to scratching, and go through a electro-chemical process when produced.
Cast is more porous and thicker than pressed, but heat is better retained.
Pressed is the least expensive, but also will wear out faster than the others.
Stainless Steel Cons
The primary criticism of stainless steel cookware is that it's a poor conductor of heat and doesn't distribute it evenly. Though, the higher quality ones include copper or aluminum on the bottom and sides.
Another downside is possible discoloring when exposed to high temperature levels. When exposed constantly to salt, the surface may be affected as well. Of course, stainless steel cookware can be pricey as well.
Aluminum Cons
The biggest complaint about aluminum is that it reacts with certain foods, specifically those that have acidic or alkaline elements. Using aluminum to cook tomato sauce, for instance, might cause particles from the cookware to be released into the food.
Alzheimer's disease is believed by some to possibly be caused by aluminum. This has been disproved by many scientists and the FDA, but this could be a potential downside.

Decision Making Process
If money is not a factor, then stainless steel cookware is the best way to go. If it is, then aluminum is much more cost effective. Both clean rather easily and are quality overall. The key is to figure out what your needs are and which one best suits those needs.

For a selection of quality stainless cookware sets at great prices, visit: http://stainless-cookware-sets.com/
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