Ceramic cookware tends to look high end and fancy. Ever stopped to think about how long ceramic cookware has been around? You might think that your metal pots that have become blackened with age, have been around longer than ceramic cook vessels, but the truth is ceramic cookware dates back much earlier than metal pots and pans.
Metal pots came into being during the Industrial Age (from about 1760 to sometime between 1820 and 1840), while ceramic cookware dates back thousands of years to the ancient Greeks and Chinese. Of course, the ceramic the ancient Greeks and Chinese used wasn’t as attractive and table ready as the stuff you can buy today.
So is newer necessarily better? Well when it comes to cookware, ceramic is making a comeback! And the reasons to trade in your non-stick aluminum frying pan for a ceramic one are – well – a hot topic.
First, let’s start with the obvious. Ceramic looks so much prettier. You can take your ceramic pot straight from the stovetop or oven to the table – the pop of pretty colour or classic white of the ceramic means there’s no need to dump everything out of the pot and into a more table-ready serving dish. A metal pot just does not say “ready to serve”. And if you’ve got leftovers, the ceramic cookware can go into the fridge and be ready for reheating later. So ceramic is pretty and energy efficient (think less dishes to wash and put away).
Another great reason to use ceramic is less obvious. Ceramic does not leach into your food. Sounds disgusting right? What does that mean? Well metals can be toxic. They can contain the likes of lead, cadmium, aluminum, copper, nickel, chromium, and iron. So what’s the big deal? Well, metals tend to be absorbed into foods. So the foods can get the taste and odour of the metal – that’s just not good for the flavour of the food or for your health. Quality ceramic cookware is made only with water and inorganic materials and minerals from the earth’s crust; it is free of toxins and so there is nothing to leach into your food.
When cooking, ceramic diffuses the heat slowly and evenly. This means your food cooks from both the inside and outside at the same time, creating even more potential savings in time and energy. While ceramic does take a bit longer to heat up than metal cookware, ceramic tends to retain its heat longer and more efficiently. Good ceramic cookware is also dishwasher and microwave safe – your metal pot? Nah!
In today’s world, we want healthy, we want energy-efficient, we want versatile, and we want pretty too and ceramic checks all the boxes. Go ahead cook like the ancient Greeks — it’s the in thing!
So what’s the down side to ceramic? Don’t drop it! Unlike your metal pots and pans, ceramic is breakable, so if you live in a household with folks with butterfingers, then ceramic may not be the best choice for you.