does yeomanís work for cookware both out at the camp in our homes.
Aluminum is lightweight and for the most part inexpensive.
Inferior aluminum cookware can oxidize leaving a white chalky
residue on your pots. Ingesting
this oxidation can make you sick. Aluminum
is also reactive. Cook
something acidic in your aluminum cookware, and the aluminum can
interfere with the taste of your food.
Aluminum is a tricky material to cook with.
Aluminum is not terribly conductive, so it takes a while to get
hot, and when it gets hot, it stays hot.
Get your aluminum pan to hot and the food starts to burn,
removing it from the heat wonít help.
The food will continue to burn because the heat is trapped and
dissipates slowly. Aluminum
cookware has also been linked to Alzheimerís disease.
Short-term weekends wonít matter, but if youíre going to take
a half-year off to hike the Pacific Crest Trail, you might want to think
again. Because aluminum is
soft, it can get banged up more easily than other materials in the
steel is probably the number two material you will find for cookware
both out at the camp in the home. Stainless
steel doesnít rust or oxidize. It
is very durable, and takes the rigors of life on the trail very well.
It is the heaviest of the materials typically used in cookware,
but the margin of increased weight is minor in a well-designed cookware
set. Stainless steel is
also a tricky material to cook with.
Stainless steel is not a very good conductor so like aluminum it
takes a while to get heated up. Unlike
aluminum it doesnít trap the heat.
If your food starts to burn, remove the pan from the heat and the
temperature drops quickly. So
it is easier to cook with. Stainless
steel is also a little slicker than aluminum, making clean up easier.
pots are usually stainless steel and copper or stainless steel and
aluminum. The copper or
aluminum is usually sandwiched between the stainless steel. Composite pots, especially those with copper-sandwiched
bottoms are the best for cooking. Not
only do you get the durable, non-stick qualities of stainless steel,
copper is an excellent conductor. It
heats quickly and cools quickly, and passing through the layer of
stainless diffuses the heat for nice even cooking.
Aluminum adds the same qualities, but is not quite as efficient
as copper. Because stainless steel does not take to welding, specialized
construction of composite pots adds weight.
Poorly designed pots with sandwiched bottoms can break their
welds, leaving you with useless cookware when the copper plate and
protective stainless layer falls off.
Also, donít confuse a pot that has a layer of copper on the
bottom that is visible with a sandwiched bottom.
The thin layer of copper on the outside of some pots, typically
electroplated on, are so thin it ads very little benefit to the
is incredibly lightweight and durable.
If you are counting every ounce in the pack or will be going on
long trips where durability is an issue, titanium may be the way to go.
Titanium is very expensive when compared to other materials and
like aluminum is a poor conductor of heat.
It heats quickly but stays hot, making it easy to burn your food.
Unless you are a purist for lightweight backpacking, titanium is
probably over kill for the average person.