Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Question about Using Copper Pan


Robenco15
 Share

Recommended Posts

Hi All,

 

So I got a Mauviel 250c 10.2 inch fry pan for my birthday this past weekend and I had a few questions as this is my first copper piece of cookware.

 

I've read all about how you don't need high heat, etc., etc. I have an All Clad d5 fry pan so I was used to that recommendation. I know all gas stoves are different and my 5 out of 10 on the dial is different than your 5 out of 10. I know that if I am searing a piece of meat a 7 would do it for my All Clad. Any reason to think a 5 or 6 would equate to a 7 using my copper fry pan? Right now I am sticking with 7 to sear, etc. just like my All Clad. I assumed copper would give me more evenly displaced heat and react quicker, but still heat to the same temperatures.

 

Can't a flame only heat a pan to only so hot a temperature? Does copper get hotter than other material or just spread it out more evenly?

 

People who use copper, do you need to be careful abou pre-heating the pan? It is a very heavy and thick pan, I can't imagine if I let it pre-heat for a few minutes I'd hurt it if I can do the same with my d5 All Clad, but wanted to be sure.

 

Last thing, I could care less about the patina, etc. I use it as a tool, not as a piece of art. That being said, is there any color I should be worried about seeing? I have red, purple, and green/yellow right where the flame hits the pan. Would high heat damage the pan as long as there are things in the pan? Obviously an empty pan would be bad news.

 

Thank you for all of the information! I greatly appreciate it. Loving the pan so far!

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Cook things in it, man! If it has a good, solid lining, then I wouldn't worry so much. If the lining becomes thin, then maybe worry just a small bit.

 

Some of us don't have such nice toys to play with, enjoy it while you have it !

I'm a lifelong professional chef. If that doesn't explain some of my mental and emotional quirks, maybe you should see a doctor, and have some of yours examined...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Oh trust me, I am not babying it at all. I just want to make sure I don't have to change anything in my switch from all clad to copper. I plan on beating the shit out of it and using for everything. It is heavy, thick copper. I don't think it needs babying, but want to make sure.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Think of a copper pan like a battery--but instead of storing electricity, it stores heat.

 

Um, I thought that was what cast iron does. I was under the impression that the beauty of cooking with copper is that it responds quickly to changes in heat, the opposite of storing heat.

Understanding Stovetop Cookware:  http://forums.egullet.org/topic/25717-understanding-stovetop-cookware/

Porthos Potwatcher
The Once and Future Cook

;

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes cast iron absorbs heat, and so does copper, as does heavy aluminum.  But heavy copper ware doesn't "respond quickly".

 

Think about it:

Copper is a heavy, dense material and takes time to heat up, so it will also take time to cool down.  Thin materials will "respond quickly": Put them on the heat and they heat up immediately, take them off the heat and they cool down immediately.  Responsive.

 

Let's say you're sauteing off beef chunks for stew in a copper frying pan, and you want a nice gold brown colour on the meat.  You can load the pan to maximum with meat chunks (but not overcrowding the pan) and you will get consistent browning with no "hot spots" (right around the heat source) or "Cool spots" (away from the heat source).  Do this with a thin frying pan of almost any material and you will get hot spots and cool spots, and once you load the pan with meat, it will behave much differently from a heavy copper pan, taking much longer for the same effect.

 

Heavy copper pans are used for consistent heating, which is why they are so popular for cooking sugar.  You can find small 2-4 qt sauce pan style copper pans made specifially for sugar cooking in mst pastry kitchens, as well as large "Bowl shaped" pots with handles that sit on an open burner like fudge makers use.  The reason copper is chosen is specifically because of even heating with no hot spots or cold spots.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I understand what you are saying. In my experience with a copper saucier and fry pan, if I boil water in a copper pan and a identical non copper pan, then immediately take them both off the heat, the copper stops boilng pretty much immediately while the other pan stops boiling over the course of a few seconds. I have done that test twice and both times those were my results.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

copper absorbs and 'transmits' heat faster than most other metals in the kitchen. to the  entire pan, including the 'working'

 

area : the Inner lining where you will be doing the cooking.

 

it thick enough, that inner lining will have a very even heat.  A think solid silver pan  ( pure Ag ) might be better.  hard to come by.

 

copper will cool faster off the heat than 'capacitor' metals that take longer to heat, thus longer to cool:  i.e.   cast iron.

 

i have a fair number of thick copper pans.  the pans with high sides also have thick copper running right up to the lip. Fantastic you say.  Nope I say.  that portion of the pan radiates heat 

 

back into the kitchen as fast as it takes it up,  Toasty in the Winter, not so good in the summer.

 

and they are heavy.

 

A 3/4 full heavy copper pan, with thick copper up the sides, will take longer to bring that amount of water to the boil due to this effect.

 

not so shallow pans.

 

what kind of lining do you have in your pan ?

 

What would a Pic look like, posted here ?

 

:biggrin:

 

enjoy your pan.  copper is still great for 'saute'  ( shallow pan ) and saucier  ( even heat, still on the shallow side )

 

boiling up several gallons of water for Pasta Night in a thick tall copper pan ?  consider ordering out,

 

or cracking open a few bottles of Bubbly ( with your new PureFizz (s)   :huh: ) just skip the pasta.

 

:laugh:

Edited by rotuts (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have the same 10 inch Mauviel fry pan you have Rotus. I also have a Falk Saucier 18cm piece. Love that as well. That foesn't seem to tarnish due to the finish. Kinda weird. I plan on buying Bourgeat saucepans next. No stock pot though. That isn't necessary.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

mine are Dehillerin's  FR

 

http://eshop.e-dehillerin.fr/en/copper-cuprinox-extra-thick-xsl-243_270.html

 

they might be similar

 

is this a 'sauce-pan ? ' :

 

S Pan.jpg

 

of this type, I have 9.  this pan has a 6 1/2 " diameter and weights 2.1 Kg.  this one is OK

 

Im not in any way boasting about these pans.  I was just in the right place at the right time.

 

I have 4 'pots/pans' in the thinner versions, w the lip

 

Ill call this pan a 'fry' pan  10 " :

 

F pan.jpg

 

its 1.8 Kg and very easy to work with.  Im fairly sure one gets 90 % of the copper benefits, at less

 

weight  ( ie weight you can work with and not 'Work-Out' with.

 

this set of 4 were given to me by friends that never used them as they were too heavy for them :

 

fry/true saute/two different sized 'pots'/sauce pans  ( as the first picture )

 

lucky me !  Ive use this set a lot more than the heavier one.

 

if one wanted and could afford more copper pans, one at a time, Id be getting

 

"Inox"  any way I could get them

 

Induction Copper, with all the copper benefits:

 

http://eshop.e-dehillerin.fr/en/induction-copper-curved-saute-pan-24-cm-xml-243_269-1243.html

 

no induction now ?  no mater.  Id love to have a top of the line induction top  ( lots of Amps )

 

and 1/2 of the copper pans I have, but Induction Copper.

 

just my thoughts.

 

after all, AAPL passed 100 yest.   ( 700 old school )

 

bon appetit !  its a great pleasure to have some fine great stuff. Inox ! i dont have and probably never will .  Im not bereft of a few fine things. and grateful to have them

Edited by rotuts (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The E. Dehillerin copper stuff is Mauviel. They just call it cupronix. That being said, your pieces are definitely of a different era as they look similar to my Mauviel, but slightly different. Probably slight changes in manufacturing over time.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Assuming your pan is laminated with stainless steel (vs. the older style tin lining) it can take all the heat you can throw at it. Put in on a restaurant burner cranked all the way, or toss it in a 600°F oven. It will be fine. And there are situations when that's exactly what you want to do.

 

If it's tin, you do have to baby it, because it melts at a lower temp than what you'd traditionally preheat to for searing.

 

Let the copper turn whatever colors its whims dictate. I've never heard of destructive corrosion there.

 

Here's everything you need to know about the performance of copper (and most other cookware materials). This is one of the site's most useful resources.

  • Like 1

Notes from the underbelly

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As you learn to play with your new toy, you will probably find that 5 or 6 does equate. Copper makes very efficient use of whatever btus your hob is putting out. The flame is always the same temperature, turning the control up means more of them.

Reasonable preheating of a bimetal pan should be completely worry-free. But if you leave it empty on an active hob for long (more than a few minutes), there is a risk of delamination.

Multi-colored heat discoloration on gas is totally normal.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Assuming your pan is laminated with stainless steel (vs. the older style tin lining) it can take all the heat you can throw at it. Put in on a restaurant burner cranked all the way, or toss it in a 600°F oven. It will be fine. And there are situations when that's exactly what you want to do.

 

If it's tin, you do have to baby it, because it melts at a lower temp than what you'd traditionally preheat to for searing.

Exactly.

 

Did I ever tell you the story about when I preheated a tin-lined copper piece and forgot it was on the burner???  :shock:

Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

Tasty Travails - My Blog

My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs

Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Exactly.

 

Did I ever tell you the story about when I preheated a tin-lined copper piece and forgot it was on the burner???  :shock:

 

Did you have it re-tinned?

Porthos Potwatcher
The Once and Future Cook

;

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...