Various types of Utensils are available in the market for cooking daily meals. But, clay pots utensils are getting popular these days. Allow me to tell you about cooking in earthen clay pots is not something new. Women in villages and small towns cook in them daily. The most important aspects of these clay pots are eco-friendly and beneficial to health. Nowadays, you can find designer clay pots sold by popular brands. But, people often struggle when it comes to cleaning clay pots. Today, we will look at clay pot types and how to clean them.
What is Clay Cookware?
Metal cookware, such as cast iron or stainless steel can be replaced with clay cookware. Clay cookware is manufactured entirely of natural and pure materials, moulded to perfection, then glazed and fired. Meals can be cooked in clay pots with moist heat, which comes from both the juices of the foods as they cook and moisture added to the porous clay. Cooking with moisture allows foods to be prepared without the need for large amounts of Storing, which are commonly used.
Black or red clay pots, terra-cotta pots, cazuelas, sand pots, and tagines are some of the different clay pots. Although the shapes, proportions, and clay composition vary, the purposes are often the same. Glazed, partially glazed on the inside bottom, or unglazed clay pots are generally available. Fully glazed pots do not absorb moisture or food odours, allowing all of the moisture to stay in the meal as it cooks.
Because clay is a porous substance, if the pot is not completely glazed, it will absorb moisture and odours. As a result, pots with little or no glaze are frequently saturated with water by soaking them in cold water for 10 to 15 minutes before cooking. The water in the pot acts as a water barrier, allowing the meal’s fluids to stay around and in the food rather than being absorbed into the pot, while the moisture in the pot adds steam to moisten the food.
The juices from the meal can begin to evaporate and escape from the pot once the cooking heat has evaporated the moisture. Although a clay pot soaked in water requires a longer cooking time and a higher cooking temperature (about a half-hour and 100 degrees higher), it allows food to cook slower in a moister cooking environment, boosting flavour.
If properly prepared and cooked, the meal is entirely cooked before the liquid completely evaporates from the pot. Cooking with clay pots should be done with caution. Cooking with clay pot does come with its advantages and disadvantages.
Types Of Clay Pots
There are three types of clay pots that are:
Stoneware is a type of clay cookware devoid of lead, cadmium, and other pollutants. Stoneware should have been burnt at a temperature between 2000 and 2100 degrees Fahrenheit. Stoneware has stood for the test of time, used in kitchens since ancient times.
Stoneware may currently be found in both classic and modern kitchens. Stoneware, like cast iron, is a natural substance that conducts heat evenly, allowing for efficient cooking. You get a rustic color in your cakes and bread because of the equal distribution of heat, especially during baking.
Earthenware is a type of pottery made from coarse-grained clay found in abundance in nature. It is one of the world’s oldest varieties of ceramic ware. For thousands of years, earthenware has been used for various purposes. Earthenware is traditionally created from a type of clay called red earthenware clay or red terra-cotta. However, some earthenware clays can also adopt white or grey tints.
These pots are fully non-toxic, lead-free, easy to clean, incredibly robust, non-scratch, and simple to cook with and use because they are all clay and burned to extremely high temperatures. There is no need for seasoning, soaking, or oils, and they go straight from the freezer or refrigerator to the stove. Flameware is also more resistant to breakage and does not absorb oils or flavours from food.
How to Clean Clay Pots
The following are the ways to clean clay pots:
- Use hot water instead of dishwashing soap and detergent to clean the pottery. If you do this, the soap will get trapped in the pores of the pot, rendering it useless. However, knowing that you must wash it after cooking food in a clay pot would be beneficial. Fill the pot with less than half the water and heat it on the stove (don’t boil it, but it should be hot enough to touch with your hand). Then, scrub the clay pot with a mild dishwashing scrub once the water has heated up. Your clay pot may be scratched if you use prickly scrubs. Wash it and then dry it.
- If you prepare a spicy dish in a clay pot, the aroma of the spices will linger on the utensil. To remove it, add lemon juice to the water in the pot and heat it until it comes to a boil. After that, clean the clay pot with a mild scrub to remove the spice fragrance.
- When you cook with an earthen pot on the stove, it can turn black, resulting in spice stains. It may cause problems if you want to remove this. Then cleaning these utensils with baking soda and salt might be beneficial. Fill an earthen pot halfway with water and one teaspoon of baking soda. After that, sprinkle salt on the scrub and lightly rub the spots. Cleaning regularly can undoubtedly help you to remove these stains.
Precautions to Take While Using Clay Pots
- After the food has been cooked in the clay pot, allow it to cool completely before soaking it in warm water for a few minutes to loosen any remaining food bits. Use hot water without detergent and a soft abrasive pad to remove food bits.
- Fill the pot halfway with warm water and two tablespoons of baking soda to neutralise harsh odours. Allow at least 15 minutes for the cookware to soak.
- Scrub it with a nonmetallic scrubbing pad or a soft bristle brush. Use abrasive scouring powders carefully since they block pores.
- On a low to medium flame, clay pots can be used on a gas stove.
- Lemon and hot water are used to clean clay utensils.
- Microwave-safe clay pots without any metal can be used.
Clay pots are fragile utensils and beneficial to our health. But they’re extremely good for cooking various types of foods. For cleaning these utensils, we have to take extreme precautions to get long-lasting, satisfactory output from clay pots.