Why not? Chefs, collectors and foodies would argue it's the bees knees in the kitchen. And they'd be right. It's beauty and shine seduces, while the traditional vision of copper pots above the stove is found in magazines, across Instagram and indeed, in my heart.
Here's a few basic things you should know before purchasing copper pieces for your home:
Copper is the oldest metal used by man.
For more than 500 years, copper cookware has been the cornerstone of the sophisticated kitchen. Its characteristics are not just aesthetic—cooking with copper produces some of the finest cuisines.
Copper has a superior heat transmission, which requires less heat to cook. This process preserves the nutritional value as well as the delicate flavors and aromas of each dish. For comparison, stainless steel has a very low heat transmission, which creates hot spots where food will stick and burn to the cookware.
Copper heats quickly and diffuses evenly, all the way to the edges of the pan. Set a copper sauté pan on a top stove and it rips hot. Pull it off and it cools rapidly. Thanks to that quick, nimble reactivity, copper excels at searing, sautéing, sauces, and jams. Use it to cook anything that requires immediate heat.
Buyer beware - not all copper is created equally.
The difference between artisan made copper pieces and mass produced is... staggering. You might not be able to tell in a photograph, but the look, colour, feel and effectiveness of copper is determined by the quality and the thickness of the copper.
Copper comes in different gauges as well as different finishing. The thicker the copper, the higher quality, the more sturdier and of course, the more expensive.
You will see copper pieces that are unlined, meaning copper shows on both the inside and outside of the piece. This is great for measuring spoons, mixing bowls and colanders. Pans with no lining can be used, but not with acid - so avoid lemons, tomatoes, etc. The traditional jam pan is unlined, and although there is always acid in jam, the amount of sugar involves protects the copper.
Lined copper will use one of two metals: tin or stainless steel. Tin is the traditional, and preferred lining. It allows the copper to provide incredible conductivity but, it can start to melt in temperatures over 450F. Stainless steel is the most convenient, but steel inhibits the conductivity of copper and becomes more of an aesthetic value over exceptional cooking quality.
How to clean copper.
You can use a store bought cleaner, like Wright’s Copper Cream or Brasso. The easiest home method is to stir together lemon juice and salt, rub it in with a cloth, and let it rest. Then simply wash with soap and warm water and dry completely, until warm and shiny.
All our new copper pieces are artisan made in Italy. They are high quality, using thick gauge copper and provide the sturdiness needed for fail-proof, safe and beautiful cooking. Take a peek in our Limited Editions Collections for the latest pieces available!