Cast iron is heavy. To a lesser extent, stainless steel is heavy as well. While the mass of these alloys is responsible for their heat transfer and retention properties, it also makes them, well, heavy.
While at my parent’s house for dinner recently, I noticed an All-Clad saute pan that I’d never seen used sitting at the bottom of a drawer. When I inquired as to why, my mother noted that the pan was too difficult for her to hold due to its weight and to a lesser extent, handle. Being the thoughtful and concerned son that I am, I offered to help her with this issue by liberating the item from it dark drawer, and in return, giving the gift of additional storage space. Who could pass up such a deal? Not my mother who happily accepted.
You can see that, while it hadn’t received much use as of late, the pan had certainly seen a burner or two in its day as evidenced by the “Before” photos below.
Having recently read about, and purchased a bottle of Bar Keepers Friend, I thought “what better time to give it a try?” and promptly went to work.
As you can see, the pan had lost its mirror finish long ago (which I think adds to its charm as I have a soft spot for items with history and character). I mention this simply as I would be hesitant to use it on the exterior of my new All-Clad items expecting that it would likely leave micro scratches on the outside, regardless of what the website may claim. If you’ve used the product on polished finishes, please, leave a comment. I’d love to hear about your experience.
The results can be seen in both the picture at the top of the page, and the following “After” shot.
Overall, I was pretty impressed, and went on to polish up my Rancilio Silvia espresso machine which had years of water marks on it. The results were equally pleasing. If you have old cookware that needs some new life, grab a bottle and give it a shot. It’s pretty cheap and goes a long way.