Thread Number: 33945
Have We Determined How To Unblacken Aluminum?
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Post# 510004   4/7/2011 at 14:39 (2,359 days old) by whirlcool (Just North Of Houston, Texas)        

Last night Karen put our aluminum Mirro Pressure cooker in the dishwasher for cleaning. She used STTP in the detergent mix(Walmart GV powder), but when the cycle completed the polished aluminum came out of the DW looking like the pot has been overheated.

No more luster to the finish and it's a gun metal grey now.

Have we here ever determined if this damage can be reversed and how to go about it?

Post# 510009 , Reply# 1   4/7/2011 at 15:02 (2,359 days old) by thomasortega (Los Angeles - CA)        

laundry soap bar, steel wool and lots of elbow grease

Post# 510019 , Reply# 2   4/7/2011 at 15:57 (2,359 days old) by mixfinder ()        
Bar Keeper's Friend

Bon Ami, Bar Keeper's friend, SOS, Mother's metal polish alone or in any combination will all remove the oxidation along with a fair amount of elbow grease.

Post# 510030 , Reply# 3   4/7/2011 at 17:01 (2,359 days old) by supremewhirlpol ()        
Have some for show

and have some that you actually use for real cooking. Or just don't use stuff made out of aluminum for cooking->problem solved.

Post# 510035 , Reply# 4   4/7/2011 at 17:36 (2,359 days old) by Frigilux (The Minnesota Prairie)        

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My cookware is stainless steel, but I have ten aluminum cake pans, and quite frankly, I've come to like the dull, gun-metal gray color. I think cakes brown more evenly due to the darker hue.

Post# 510042 , Reply# 5   4/7/2011 at 18:06 (2,359 days old) by Hunter (Colorado)        
if I am remembering right,

you can boil an acid, such as cream of tartar, in water, and that will brighten it up.  Try boiling a spoonful of that in water in the pot - and if it works, you can put in a bigger pot?



Post# 510053 , Reply# 6   4/7/2011 at 18:47 (2,359 days old) by mixfinder ()        

If you cook ingredients with a low ph in a darkened pan it will remove the discoloration from the pan and transfer it to the food.  As Hunter said, cream of tartar will remove discoloration provided you have a large enough pot and enough creamof tartar to fully submerge the vessel in a concentrated solution.  Cream of Tartar does remove the coloration but the surface of the pan will still rough.  Polishing with one of the other methods help to smooth and rebuff the aluminum.

Post# 510057 , Reply# 7   4/7/2011 at 19:43 (2,359 days old) by Launderess (Quiet Please, There´s a Lady on Stage)        
Do Not Scrub Aluminum With Steel Wool

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Least of all harshly in an attempt to remove the blackening.

The black oxidation of aluminum is caused by the chemicals contained in automatic dishwashing detergents, along with prolonged contact with (hot) water. This is why almost every single product for such use clearly states it is *NOT* to be used on aluminum, and one is advised not to soak such things very long.

Whilst there are various recipes for removing oxidation from aluminum they can be of limited use. Since what has occured is a chemical reaction (see: Atomic Hydrogen), you have not just the surface but a change that goes deep down which will make it hard if not impossible to remove.

Post# 510090 , Reply# 8   4/7/2011 at 21:17 (2,359 days old) by mixfinder ()        
59 Years of Stupidity

I have no knowledge to speak to Laundress assertations but I own a lot of aluminum that is as old as I am and you can part your hair in the gleam, a result of steel wool.

Post# 510096 , Reply# 9   4/7/2011 at 21:26 (2,359 days old) by Launderess (Quiet Please, There´s a Lady on Stage)        

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It is my understanding that steel wool can not only scratch aluminum but any bits left behind may rust.

Being as all this may assume it depends upon what grade of steel wool, and or how the thing is done. If it works for someone far be it pour moi to stop them.

Post# 510125 , Reply# 10   4/8/2011 at 01:03 (2,359 days old) by whirlcool (Just North Of Houston, Texas)        

Today I tried Bon Ami and when that didn't work an SOS pad.
No luck.

Since what has occured is a chemical reaction (see: Atomic Hydrogen), you have not just the surface but a change that goes deep down which will make it hard if not impossible to remove.

I think you may be right, Laundress. There wasn't any change after I used elbow grease with the cleaners. The pot did shine up, but the color didn't go back to the highly polished clean looking aluminum.

Strangely enough, the only areas that changed color were the highly polished aluminum areas. The interior of the pressure cooker did not change color, only the exterior.

I think it's time for a stainless steel pressure cooker. But we use them only for a few items, maybe 3 or 4 times in an entire year.

Post# 510141 , Reply# 11   4/8/2011 at 05:40 (2,359 days old) by Launderess (Quiet Please, There´s a Lady on Stage)        
Aluminum Is Only Second To Copper

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For being a bugger in kitchens. *LOL*

Have only two pieces of alumium cookware (vintage Sidney Magalite) and once they are done, so am I. *LOL*

Pure aluminum is a great conductor of heat, and makes for nice heavy pots and pains,but it comes with so many restrictions. Can't go in the dishwasher, cannot cook certain foods, no acids, blah, blah, blah.. Of course aluminum is cheap which is why so much was made from it for household, especially kitchen use.

As for pressure cookers, nabbed a nice SS Magefesa set off fleaBay, and haven't looked back. Both the pot and fry pan can go right into the dishwasher, and can make tomato dishes without worry.

Post# 510210 , Reply# 12   4/8/2011 at 11:27 (2,358 days old) by whirlcool (Just North Of Houston, Texas)        

I really like Mirro pressure cookers, but they all tend to be made from aluminum.
Presto makes them in stainless steel. But since we use these only a few times a year I wonder if it is even worth spending the money on a new one?

The only thing we really make in the pressure cooker is spareribs and pot roast.

Post# 510254 , Reply# 13   4/8/2011 at 14:39 (2,358 days old) by Launderess (Quiet Please, There´s a Lady on Stage)        
Presto SS Pressure Cookers

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Before purchasing the Magefesa set did lots of research. IIRC the Presto SS models do not have a core sandwich base, rather simply the entire pot is made from SS. This has lead to some consumers complaining about things burning to the bottom.

The weight of my Magefesa pot and pan (set came with a stock type pot and a smaller "fry" pan, both use the same PC lid) has more heft than the aluminum "pressure fryer" I've got (aka "Chicken Bucket").

Check out Miss Vickie's website. The self proclaimed "Queen of Pressure Cooking" there lots of good information and comments there. Also (or is it is good as well.

Once you get a really great PC you may find your range of dishes expanding. If you love corned beef brisket there simply is no better way to make one than in a PC.

Post# 510307 , Reply# 14   4/8/2011 at 18:57 (2,358 days old) by whirlcool (Just North Of Houston, Texas)        

Yes, we do love corned beef & cabbage and haven't made it for a number of years.
No reason why, I think we forgot the fact that we like it! We used to make it in the slow cooker.

Thanks for the links, I'll take a look over there.

Post# 510317 , Reply# 15   4/8/2011 at 20:21 (2,358 days old) by Launderess (Quiet Please, There´s a Lady on Stage)        

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First thing I made in my new PC was corned beef & cabbage!

Usually this is an all day or at least afternoon affair, not something you decide to make for weeknight dinner at 4PM! *LOL*

Purchased a brisket at local supermarket at around 5PM and had dinner on the table by around 7PM. After cooking the brisket in the PC, put my favorite glaze (mixture of brown sugar and honey Dijon mustard) on top then popped the thing into broiler for a bit to melt.

Here is a link to the model I have (Magefesa Rapid II), which though no longer sold in the United States (the company is based in Spain), you can find the set often MIB at estate sales and fleaPay.

Once you start researching pressure cookers soon enough the debate about spring valve versus jiggle top/counter weight comes up.

The Magefesa is a spring valve and have to say the touted advantages of being able to use less water in such things was not only true, but gave excellent results.

With jiggle top pressure cookers you have to compensate for the amount of steam that is released by the counter weight. Usually this calls for using "lots" of water, which in turn causes persons to feel items cooked in such things taste boiled to death.

Spring valve cookers release much less steam and safely reach a higher pressure than jiggle tops. This not only translates into faster cooking,but less flavor and such are leached out into the water.

To make corned beef my unit only requires enough water to barely cover the top of the meat.


Post# 510426 , Reply# 16   4/9/2011 at 12:08 (2,357 days old) by whirlcool (Just North Of Houston, Texas)        

Personally, I like the jiggle top models. It brings back memories of when I was a kid on Sundays my mother would usually pressure cook dinner and I'll always remember that jiggling sound.

Do the spring loaded models make any noise? When we cook we just add enough water to cover the top of the meat too.

But I will admit that those Magefesa models do look very nice. They are a bit pricey though. But you get what you pay for these days.

Now that you brought up the Corned Beef & Cabbage that's what we are going to have for dinner Sunday night.

I was looking at the Mirro Recipe booklet that came with our pressure cooker and was surprised to find recipes for Rabbit, Squirrel & even Partridge in it!

Post# 510458 , Reply# 17   4/9/2011 at 16:46 (2,357 days old) by Launderess (Quiet Please, There´s a Lady on Stage)        
No Noise

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Which to some pressure cooker fans is not up there street. They claim the "noise" is what keeps them alert they have something on the stove. IMHO one shouldn't leave a PC alone on the range whilst going off to do other things, but that's just me.

I got my Magefesa set for a very good price. Though was initially considering having something sent from Europe. Spring valve PCs have been the rage there for ages because they are deemed safer than jiggle top/counter weight versions.

Post# 510471 , Reply# 18   4/9/2011 at 18:24 (2,357 days old) by 3beltwesty ()        
3 liter Hawkins PC

Here about 8 years ago I got from the Thrift Store a never used in the box Pressure Cooker for a dollar or 2.

It is a 3 liter Hawkins Pressure Cooker by Bay City International of Green Bay Wisconsin. Its recipe manual has a March 1997 print date. The UPS labels has a 1997 date, the lady had it shipped in 2nd day AIR 14 years ago. The family on the back page has a 1970's look, guy with big sideburns, lady with 1970's hair; 2 perfect Brady bunch kids. The back of the recipe book has one writing to a lady in Bombay India if one wants to add any comments or a new recipe.

My older pressure cooker went under in Katrina and was tossed due to gobs of corrosion. This old spare was really forgotten about until this thread; it was way up high in a cabinet in the laundry room and did not get ruined.


Post# 510476 , Reply# 19   4/9/2011 at 18:45 (2,357 days old) by 3beltwesty ()        
A used replacement via ebay might be nil in cost

In my the aluminum cooking stuff that went under in Katrina's salt water, much got to be pitted and spotted. A *NON* metallic pad is what I used to fix some, ie scotch bright type pads, or just sand paper.

Often many cheap Aluminum items are easier to just toss the stuff as Aluminum scrap than "fix".

Here much of the salt damaged Aluminum stuff was just experimented with. I ended up saving only the oddball/rare molds of my moms, more as preserving childhood memories than being practical.

Here I am mostly a Revere Ware Stainless/copper bottom pots and pan person than Aluminum user. I probably threw out 2/3 to 3/4 of the Aluminum stuff due to Katrina.
Old Aluminum *ITEMS* that you really want to save/FIX are often cheap on Ebay, thus weigh some quest of fixing versus just buying another EXACT used item at a token cost. I did this with many items that I was torn about tossing. Ie gut wants to fix it, but a similar/exact replacement can sometimes be NIL in cost.

Search ebay for that ruined Aluminum item, its cost used many be little. Gobs of old nick nacks, books and other household items here were just bought on ebay after Katrina. In some cases the cost was super low. ie an old wimpy Kenwood 22 watt stereo intergated amp I got in the 1970's for 125 bucks new was just 27 with freight on ebay after Katrina.

Post# 510537 , Reply# 20   4/10/2011 at 01:39 (2,357 days old) by rp2813 (The Big Blue Bubble)        

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I like my Mirro cookers but Prestos are easier to find parts for on store shelves.  I just recently picked up a barely used aluminum finish Mirro 404 cooker at Savers to replace my scratched up avocado 404 from the 60's that apparently developed a bit of a warp some time ago.  I had been looking for that exact cooker for quite a while, and in the interim found a model 394 which I like too, as it's more substantial and sturdy than the later 404, but it's even harder to find parts for a 394 anywhere but on line.


My Presto is the biggest of the three at 8 quarts.  Bought it about ten years ago.  It works well, and although it's aluminum and not stainless, I use my cookers about as often as Allen does so it's not worth it to me to spend the extra money for stainless.  I've never put any of my cookers through the dishwasher.  Presto parts can be found in hardware stores like ACE and OSH, which is why I chose that brand when I was shopping for a larger size. 


Allen, we must have similar vintage Mirro instruction/cook books.  Mine has squirrel and rabbit recipes too!  Who did they think were buying their cookers, the Clampetts?  Or are squirrel and rabbit regularly featured on Wisconsin dinner tables?

Post# 510541 , Reply# 21   4/10/2011 at 02:42 (2,357 days old) by mixfinder ()        
Perfectly Managed

Take all the guess work out it.


Post# 510607 , Reply# 22   4/10/2011 at 10:05 (2,356 days old) by whirlcool (Just North Of Houston, Texas)        

The thing that gets me about the pressure cooker we ruined the finish on is that is WAS a very recent e-bay purchase. In fact this was the very first time it was being used! It was offered as a new in the box never used vintage item, and true to the listing it was spotless and shiny!

It's a 6 Qt unit but it was so big it would hardly fit in the kitchen sink for hand washing, that's how it came to be put in the dishwasher in the first place.

That's what I thought too when I saw those odd recipes.

Miss Gulf Coast:
There are those people who get pressure cookers as gifts but refuse to use them because they are scared of them. I know quite a few people who wouldn't even let one in the door because of this. I imagine that's how some of those get into thrift stores.

Post# 510660 , Reply# 23   4/10/2011 at 16:13 (2,356 days old) by Launderess (Quiet Please, There´s a Lady on Stage)        
I Feel Your Pain

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Have had my share of runied "NIB" treasures found from eBay or other sources. *LOL*

Being as that may, as suggested upthread there are quite allot of new/unused vintage or new PCs on eBay and or thrifts.

Often given as gifts and never used pressure cookers were simply packed away. Another source is from store stock that was simply never sold.

Pressure cookers probably had their last huge heyday during the 1970's recession. Food prices were high and a housewife often had to make her food budget stretch, especially as far as meat was concerned. A PC allowed her to whip up tasty meals from not so great cuts of meat. This was in a time when many a man felt at least dinner had better have some form of dead and cooked animal before him! *LOL*

Also with women entering the workforce pressure cookers promised a way to may fast and easy meals. However soon as microwave ovens entered the kitchen in a big way, pressure cookers were mostly kicked to the curb.

Another reason pressure cookers weren't used is that many equate the results with what their mothers or grandmothers served, food that was "boiled to death". Hard rubbery meat and mush veggies comes to mind. And yes everyone and their grandmother seems to have a story about a pc that exploded .

Post# 511823 , Reply# 24   4/16/2011 at 16:20 (2,350 days old) by sudsmaster (East of SF, West of Eden)        

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You've just modified your pressure cooker with a custom anodized finish.

Nothing really functionally wrong with it. In fact, the anodizing is a harder finish and the pot may well last longer because of it.

Anodizing is simply a controlled oxidation of the aluminum surface. Pure aluminum is highly reactive and more or less instantly creates a very thin layer of oxide on it as soon as it is exposed to air. Thicker layers can be created with appropriate chemicals/temps. Various colors are added with dyes when the finish is still porous. What happens in the dishwasher isn't textbook anodizing but it gives a similar result. The aluminum oxide (the same as the grit material on most sandpapers) is very very hard and is considered desirable for a number of applications. A lot of the cookware one buys these days is teflon coated on the inside and anodized on the outside. Magnalite cookware used to be anodized inside and out. I routinely stick aluminum cookware with anodized exterior finish in the dishwasher. It might change appearance a bit but I consider it preferable to a dirty pot.

Post# 511900 , Reply# 25   4/17/2011 at 05:18 (2,350 days old) by whirlcool (Just North Of Houston, Texas)        

Strangely enough, the outside of the PC oxidized, but the insides are still nice a and shiny. The exterior was polished aluminum but the interior wasn't. Strange, eh?

Post# 511942 , Reply# 26   4/17/2011 at 12:07 (2,349 days old) by mixfinder ()        

I remember Miracle Maid and other cookware coming out of West Bend in the 70's as well as the earliest Caphalon with an anondized looking finish upselling it by saying it was coated with a mixture that included garnet to give the cookware a permanent finish.  In my experience with these styles of cookware it is extremely difficult to remove any carbonized greasy residue that forms on the outside.  When I found Calphalon that was discolored with grease I tried putting it in the self cleaning oven.  It would come out looking new although the heat gave a blueish tinge to the aluminum handles and rivets. Pans with anondized finish subjected to regular dishwasher cleaning begin to look more like concrete with a whitish hue.  It baffles me that some cooks prefer to spend a small fortune on All-Clad LTD with a stainless liner and anondized exterior.  Some of looks like the dog wouldn't eat from it after a few years being run through the dishwasher.  I have also learned the hard way that glassware, cookware and colorized Pyrex can look wonderful in a second hand store or yard sale and once home it turns white, etched and ugly after a good washing.  Using a something as simple as canola oil to polish etched glassware and anondized cookware masks the damage.  In those cases when I've been had they are usable as a display but can never be resold.

Post# 512501 , Reply# 27   4/19/2011 at 22:15 (2,347 days old) by Toggleswitch (New York City, NY)        

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To me it's all about stainless-steel.

Aluminum and copper are not allowed in my kitchen.

With SS one can throw any chemical include lye-based oven-cleaner and have perfect results.

To clean the inside of an aluminum pot add a peeled potato, water and lemon juice. The oxidation will transfer to the potato as the water is boiled.

Post# 944244 , Reply# 28   6/19/2017 at 13:09 by A_T (Chicago, IL)        
Unblacken using oven, roasting pan, and cream of tar tar


Here is a video that shows how to unblacken Aluminum using oven without scrubbing as long as the cookware fits within a roasting pan.


  View Full Size
Post# 944454 , Reply# 29   6/21/2017 at 08:01 by panthera (Rocky Mountains)        
Yes! We have.

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At least, others have and I have learned from them.


I collect and use pressure cookers. Have a personal weakness for the Presto/National cast aluminium pressure pans from the late '40s and the early stainless steel cookers. The ones with the springs, just like the 'modern' European style.


Obviously, I rarely get them in anything but post-dishwasher shape.


Here's what works for me:

1) Since I'm going to be cleaning thoroughly, I don't worry about using steel-wool cleaning pads. Get some (the dollar store blue soaped ones are fine) and scrub away for a few minutes. Rinse thoroughly.

2) Pick up one of those polishing kits for various metals at The Homeless Despot or Habor Fright - they have a black stick, a red stick and a white stick as well as two or three polishing wheels and arbor for your drill.

3) Clamp the drill into place, load on wheel with a fair amount of olive oil (the cheaper in this case, the more acidic, the better) then rub the black stick onto the wheel, not the pressure cooker. Using gentle pressure, rub the entire surface over the wheel. This will take a few minutes to cover everything, with frequent stops to reload the wheel.

Wipe the mixture of oxidation, black polish and oil off with an absorbent cloth then clean well with either window cleaner or DAWN hand dishsoap and lots of water or WD-40. All of these work well.

If you've removed the tarnish, go to the next stick, the red one and continue the same way, using a clean wheel. If not, repeat the process.

You'll probably need twice the time with the red stick and oil.

If the finish is now nearly right, switch to Mother's Mag and Alu polish to finish up. If it's not quite there, yet, another run with the red polish will do it.

The white polishing compound is really good for Bakelite handles which your pot won't have.


I've done this over the years on over 30 pressure pans/stove-top espresso cookers* and always been happy with the results.


Oh, the ads about 'sapphire' finishes are true - look up aluminium oxide under precious jewels some time. Deceptive, but true.


As to the whole Alzheimer's nonsense, it's just that - one will absorb far more aluminium with medications and food than through aluminium cookware, first. Second, there is now and never was a link between the aluminium salt deposits in the brains of those with the disease and consumption of the metal.


*Yes, I know. It's not really espresso, etc.

Post# 944458 , Reply# 30   6/21/2017 at 08:51 by panthera (Rocky Mountains)        

This post has been removed by the member who posted it.

Post# 944461 , Reply# 31   6/21/2017 at 08:55 by panthera (Rocky Mountains)        
Sigh. Wrong cut and paste.

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I wanted to add that there's so many advantages to pressure cooking at high altitudes I'm always surprised more people don't do it.

Post# 944488 , Reply# 32   6/21/2017 at 13:06 by mrboilwash (Munich,Germany)        

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Keven, I know you have your doubts about a possible link between Alzheimers and aluminum but bear in mind there is a powerful lobby behind aluminium maybe even more powerful than the tobacco lobby ever was.

If it was so harmless as we`ve been told all the time why would possible brain damage or dementia be listed on the side effects of current aluminium containing antacids ? (At 31:49)

There`s a great documentary "The Age of Aluminium" which has changed my view on the subject. I know most of the intake is via food so it`s nearly impossible to avoid, but why take an extra risk through cook ware antiperspirants and so on ?

Post# 944519 , Reply# 33   6/21/2017 at 17:42 by panthera (Rocky Mountains)        
It's just not

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Supported by the evidence. All those 'studies' were fatally flawed. I'm ok with other people avoiding it, but I prefer my decisionss to be fact driven.

Post# 944534 , Reply# 34   6/21/2017 at 20:30 by panthera (Rocky Mountains)        
That was a bit harsh, sorry.

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I've been down the whole 'Alu' ist des Teufels discussion throughout the '70s and '80s and '90s and this century with German friends and relations and it's just pure nonsense.

Still, I shouldn't have been so harsh.

Post# 944541 , Reply# 35   6/21/2017 at 21:26 by earthling177 (Boston, MA)        

How about we discuss a bit of the actual data?

Here's the problem with the patients that ended up in the "aluminum may cause Alzheimer's" paper -- all the patients had been scanned using a CAT scan, if I remember right. One of the disadvantages of X-rays is that it tends to need a "contrast" which is usually injected into the patient's veins. And every single one of those patients had a contrast that included Aluminum in its ingredients, which, of course, were present a short time later when the patients died and had their brains examined during the autopsies.

So, at best, we can't use *those* "studies" to claim Aluminum causes the problems.

We'll need to start over and study people who never had been injected with such contrasts, or do trials to find out how long contrasts linger in one's brain etc.

One of the things that irks me about the current relationship between medical research and the media is just how *clueless* the media can be even when given precise data.

Around 1996 or so, some folks at Harvard published a paper where they explained that some evidence was surfacing that for liposoluble vitamins, one is much better off getting them in the form of milk, fats etc than in pills. That was it, for a full two days, you could just not turn on the TV on any channel without reporters talking about how Harvard scientists had said that X, where X varied by station, reporter and time, and they listed everything from "you need to eat some fats", to "you need two tablespoons of mayonnaise per day" passing thru "drinking milk", "eating some/1/2/4 tablespoons of butter per day/week" etc. In other words, some read the report and talked as close to it as they could, but most reporters just made the statement sound as outrageous as possible for their expected audience.

And no, I don't use aluminum cookware if I can avoid it. I am not afraid of it, I just like to put as much as possible in the dishwasher and if I reach my goal of *nothing* is hand washed in that meal, I am happy. Sure, some people are happy with how Aluminum pots and pans come off the dishwasher, I am not and I don't have time to polish everything either.

   -- Paulo.

PS: I can't tell you how horrified and pissed off the Harvard researchers were at how their study about vitamins was reported by the media. Me, I was surprised they were not used to it, it happens all the time.

Post# 944551 , Reply# 36   6/21/2017 at 21:59 by panthera (Rocky Mountains)        
It's the same in Germany

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The local group of the Greens met in my apartment kitchen for a few years in Munich. They all smoked. All.Of.Them.

I insisted they put out their cigarettes (hand rolled, of course) outside before they came in.

Me, they'd lecture on how evil I was for having  a dishwasher and a clothes tumbler (dryer) and, gasp! I actually slept under an electric blanket!

But they all smoked cigarettes like factory chimneys. All.


As to the whole Alumnium causes dementia nonsense, that one falls into the same category as sugar causes fungi in the body, silicium must be avoided because it's useless to the body and dihydrogen monoxide is poisonous category.


Nonsense, all of it. From beginning to end.



Post# 944561 , Reply# 37   6/22/2017 at 01:00 by MattL (Flushing, MI)        
A little subject drift...

From time to time I've wondered why no detergent manufacturer has ever come out with an "aluminum safe" dishwasher detergent.  I'd buy a box for the times I'd love to toss some cookie sheets, or pots and pans in the dishwasher.

Post# 944581 , Reply# 38   6/22/2017 at 03:03 by Brisnat81 (Brisbane Australia)        

That's what I don't understand, aluminium survived in the dishwasher when I was a kid. My mother and grandmother both had aluminium sunbeam electric fry pans and ran them in the dishwasher for years. At some point even with chlorine, something changed and they'd go black in one wash.

I'd love to know exactly what did change.

Post# 944602 , Reply# 39   6/22/2017 at 03:33 by mrboilwash (Munich,Germany)        

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Don`t worry, it`s your opinion and it wasn`t harsh at all.
The consensus of the documentary was that it has never been proven that aluminium causes Alzheimers but the opposite has never been proven as well.

What cannot be denied is that aluminium is a neurotoxin and when fish will die from the smallish amounts of aluminium dissolved from the earth crust by acid rain or when cattle dies after a drinking water incident in England I`m getting suspicious.
Paris for example no longer uses aluminium compounds to treat their city`s drinking water because there are safety concerns.
Aluminiumhydroxide is used to trigger all sorts of food allergies in animal research. So I try to avoid any excessive intake.

An aluminium safe dishwasher detergent probably isn`t going to happen because it would have to be pH neutral or slightly acidic I think. Not so good for cleaning backed on food residue effectively.

Post# 944634 , Reply# 40   6/22/2017 at 08:16 by panthera (Rocky Mountains)        

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For the US version of English language dialogue, it was too harsh. But, thanks.

It's not really opinion, though - my opinion is that Angelika Merkel is a better Chancellor than Helmut Kohl.

(Nicht, dass ich jemals meine Stimme für die CDU/CSU abgeben wird).


But this is simply fact driven: The aluminium causes dementia stuff just has no basis in fact. Fresh water fish have other problems (largely driven by their very complex pressure gradient systems to keep the right degree of salinity in their bodies) which have nothing to do with high-order mammalian brains.

This post was last edited 06/22/2017 at 08:51
Post# 944645 , Reply# 41   6/22/2017 at 10:18 by mrboilwash (Munich,Germany)        

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I suppose that was one of those "nuances" in a language only a native speaker or someone who lived in that country for a long time can detect and that`s exactly what gets me into trouble so often.
But again no offense taken because I wouldn`t have noticed anyway.

I regret we haven`t met for a beer as you suggested when you were still living in Munich.
Wasn`t in the mood for any new friends back then. Sorry.

One more thing. I liked your old Samatha so much better. I know when you look closely she`s only resting her head on her hand, but still our lesbian friends might misunderstand the gesture ;-)

This post was last edited 06/22/2017 at 10:54
Post# 944673 , Reply# 42   6/22/2017 at 13:05 by panthera (Rocky Mountains)        
Hi Stefan,

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It is a shame we missed each other - I had just finished restoring a table-top AEG clothes tumbler with electronic sensing from the early '80s! Can't even find it in their catalogues.

Anyway, the lesbians can just live with it - the symbol means 'witch's honour' and was a cue to Bewitched fans that I meant what I said on Dirty Laundry.

Might change it, though - I have a couple of Endorra pics which are great.



Post# 945067 , Reply# 43   6/24/2017 at 16:03 by norgeway (mocksville n c )        
I use aluminum

And stainless, as well as cast iron...My aluminum looks as good as new because I clean it WITH a BRILLO pad EVERY TIME and wash and dry the outside with soap and water, but yes, cream of tartar will take off the darkened layer, so will boiling a solution of borax, but if you really want it to look good inside, cook rhubarb in it..LOL

Post# 945090 , Reply# 44   6/24/2017 at 18:32 by LordKenmore (The Laundry Room)        

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An interesting article about worries about aluminum and Alzheimer's.

Post# 945091 , Reply# 45   6/24/2017 at 18:52 by LordKenmore (The Laundry Room)        

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As for me, I have only one aluminum pan in service, and it's anodized, not plain aluminum. I cringe a bit at the thought of plain aluminum, but that may just be paranoia that got programmed in during some "aluminum pans may cause Alzheimer's!" scare in the 80s. But I probably cringe less than I did then. I think there were times when I actively promoted the suggestion that perhaps my mother should get rid of her Club aluminum. (Although for the most part, looking back, those pans weren't probably used enough leech much. They were used all the time, but it was mostly fast cooking/low acid foods.) But I still cringe enough that I don't have any interest in buying vintage aluminum pans to actually use. Too bad, because I do see Club pans from time to time, and they often have fun colors, and probably are pretty decent pans. Certainly better than rock bottom stainless steel, I'm betting.


Past this, though, I think my preference is getting stuff that is dishwasher safe. I don't have a dishwasher (sob), but when the day comes when i live someplace with a dishwasher, I want as many things to go through as possible. If I handwash it had better be something worth the pain. Such as a really high quality pan that gets used when I'm ambitious in the kitchen. A really good knife. Or maybe something that's fun vintage that gets used "sometimes" when I'm in the mood. Otherwise, I want stuff day to day to be able to go into a dishwasher and survive with no drama.

Post# 945133 , Reply# 46   6/25/2017 at 02:54 by askolover (South of Nash Vegas, TN)        

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The only aluminum pot I have is my grandmother's old Mirromatic pressure cooker and I only cook things on a steamer rack in it so the aluminum alzheimer's issue is not an issue.  It has been through the dishwasher so many times it ain't even funny.

Post# 945412 , Reply# 47   6/26/2017 at 16:25 by vacerator (Macomb, Michigan)        
My aunts cooked

with Magnaware aluminum from the 1950's. They both got the alkheimers as they would say. Their husbands died before they got it from other ailments.

Post# 945418 , Reply# 48   6/26/2017 at 17:09 by Rolls_rapide (Scotland, UK)        
Dishwasher Detergent and Aluminium

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I have found that it varies depending on the detergent.

Old style metasilicate dishwasher powder detergent with its chlorine bleach (Finish and Sun) caused aluminium pots and pans to turn grey and rough to the touch.

Newer biological formulations with enzymes and oxygen bleach seem to still cause roughness of the surface, but the metal turns whiter and/or shinier.

I suppose some of the answer will be to do with pH levels.
I remember my mum stewed rhubarb in an aluminium pot. The pot came out looking brand new. Down to the acid, I suspect.

The old chlorine detergents were strongly alkaline, thus causing the greyness. The newer bio-oxy formulations probably cause the wash solution to become more acidic, hence the shiny/white.

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