The science of cooking has been excellent in recent years. One of the major advances was the invention of non-stick coatings on metal cookware that significantly reduced the amount of oil and fat required in the cooking process. There have been many types of non-stick surface treatments used over the years, and each had their advantages and disadvantages. We at Best Kitchen Buy discuss kitchen appliances, their reviews and buying instructions.
How does a non-stick coating work?
If you could enlarge the surface of a metal pan, you would see that it has hundreds of microscopic hooks and pores. When exposed to heat, these micropores tend to enlarge in size so that food particles can seep in and stick. To reduce the adhesive tendency, you can use oil that fills the cracks in the metal and prevents food from sticking. On the other hand, you can use kitchen utensils that are industrially coated with non-stick material such as PTFE, which makes the surface smooth and results in the elimination of minute pores.
Further on, we shall look at each of the above coatings and their properties.
Different types of non-stick coating
Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) coating:
The invention of the non-stick Teflon coating was something of an accident. One of Roy Plunkett’s experiments in 1938 involved freezing and compressing tetrafluoroethylene, a colorless and odorless gas. As a result, the gas became a white waxy solid named polytetrafluoroethylene. This wax-like fabric had an extremely low coefficient of friction, which in simpler terms means that it is super smooth. Later, PTFE was branded as Teflon. Only after 20 years was this material introduced to kitchen utensils, and from then on Teflon remains an integrated component in non-stick kitchen utensils.
On the downside, PTFE offers some health hazards if not treated as recommended. It is proven that Teflon begins to decompose when heated to temperatures above 500 ° F and releases fluorocarbons and other toxic fumes into the air. These fumes can cause temporary flu-like symptoms in humans, while they can be fatal to birds.
2. Ceramic coating cookware:
The ceramic cookware coating retains its prominent place among other types of non-stick pans due to its nobility. Ceramic coatings are essentially made of hardened clay and are completely free of PTFE and other chemicals. Ceramic coated non-stick cookware has recently been introduced and is gaining attention due to their nobility in terms of chemical activity. Ceramics, which are a product of the earth, are inorganic, making them an environmentally friendly product. The original inorganic liquid is converted into a gel and then applied over the surface of anodized aluminum by spraying in layers. Check out our complete recipe for Are Ceramic Hobs Safe?
Due to its inorganic nature, it does not show excess leaching of substances or chemicals in food or the environment by excess heating. This noble trend makes it the preferred choice of the present. The only alleged disadvantage of ceramic coatings is that it is relatively less durable. With persistent rigid scrubbing, the ceramic-coated cookware may lose its non-adhesive properties.
Related: WearEver® ceramic cookware 10-piece set review
3. Superhydrophobic coating:
A superhydrophobic coating is a nanoscopic surface layer that repels water. Any liquid that hits such a surface returns completely without leaving a trace. Such superhydrophobic coatings can be made of many different materials. The following are some known bases for the coating:
- Manganese oxide polystyrene (MnO2 / PS) nano-composite
- Zinc oxide polystyrene (ZnO / PS) nano-composite
- Precipitated calcium carbonate
- Carbon nano-tube structures
- Silica nano-coating
All of the above compounds are gel-based and can be easily applied by either spraying or dipping the metal to be coated. Along with their use in cooking utensils, these have also managed to find applications elsewhere such as windscreens on cars to prevent jamming of rainwater. Food-safe hydrophobic coating meets the threshold safety requirements.
4. Silicone non-stick coating:
Flexible bakeware is made of silicone rubber. Silicone is generally stable up to 300 ° C (572 ° F). Home ovens will not be used at such high temperatures. Silicone rubber does not react with food or beverages or produces dangerous fumes. It is believed to have low toxicity and thermal stability. It is also non-stick and easy to clean.
It does not change taste or release odors that can affect food quality. At present, silicone is a safer alternative to non-stick cookware treated with perfluorooctanoic acid.
5. Enamelled cast iron:
While traditional cast iron cookware is still an important part of any kitchen, the majority of chefs and chefs prefer the enamelled version. Enameled cast iron is much easier to clean and there are no spice problems. The inner coating provides non-stick properties and prevents leaching of iron in your food. This cookware comes in a range of vibrant colors to meet customer expectations and to match existing colors in kitchen design.
Enameled iron cookware is considered safe according to the FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition. So there you have it guys. An impartial description of the best materials marketed as non-stick coatings along with their properties. Happy cooking.