Enamelware Care for a Lifetime of Adventure
Enamelware is a popular product among campers and adventurers due to its durability, color fastness, and ease of cleaning.
One disadvantage is that enamel is not chip or shatterproof, since it is a finish derived from glass. Products that are stressed due to immediate temperature changes or mishandling can make the surface vulnerable to breaking down.
To get the very best out of your enamelware, I’ve pulled together a guide so your products can last a lifetime or more.
How is Enamelware made?
Traditional enamelware is not made by machine but, instead, through a multi-step process by coating cast iron or steel with a layer of powered glass & fired in a kiln. This coating prevents rust and helps evenly distribute heat throughout the surface.
Handmade means high quality
Due to the organic nature of production, each one has a few small imperfections. While this may not be ideal, it does not affect the integrity of the product and only adds to the character.
The design is a ceramic decal applied to the enamel surface and fired in a high-temperature industrial kiln. This process bakes the artwork in so that it won't peel. Another clear enamel coating is put on top for extra protection.
Enamelware great for cooking
Since enamelware doesn’t react with any acids in food, it is 100% food safe and great for cooking but is not microwave safe. Perfect for use on an induction cooker, gas or electric stove, in the oven, the bonfire, fridge, or freezer without damaging the coating or design. Tea, coffee, and some foods may stain the enamel but this is natural.
Keep in mind, extreme temperature changes can cause damage so allow your product to return to room temperature first before heating, cooling, or washing.
Cleaning Tips for your Enamelware
Do not clean your enamelware with vinegar, harsh abrasive materials, or detergents.
Handwash with soap
For everyday cleaning, you may wash by hand with mild dish soap.
Putting your enamelware in the dishwasher
These products are dishwasher safe so if you do choose to clean them in this manner, be sure to arrange the pieces so they won't bang against other dishes and chip.
Dry your enamelware thoroughly
After washing, dry enamelware thoroughly inside and out, because water can encourage corrosion especially if there is an area of the metal that is exposed.
Here are some more cleaning tips. Test small area first & clean using these tips at your own risk.
Handling your Enamelware
Enamelware is sturdy but like any piece of dishware, it can show signs of wear with time, get chipped or dented if dropped, knocked, or mishandled. This is normal in a product like this.
If you're worried about damaging it, it's recommended using it indoors only and hand wash with mild soap after each use. Dry thoroughly.
Repairing your Enamelware
Chips happen. If it does, you can apply naval jelly in the exposed area for 10 minutes to prevent rusting. You can also coat with cooking oil.
If chips happen where food or drink may come into contact, it is recommended to discontinue use, not because it’s not food safe. But because these small chips can turn into bigger ones that you could end up ingesting.
You can try to repair chipped enamelware by following these instructions. Test small area first & repair using these tips at your own risk.