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View Full Version : OT: Removing Charcow from Aluminum Pressure Cooker



john hobdeclipe
04-17-2015, 09:22 AM
Yesterday my wife cooked up a recipe of beef, onions, tomatoes, Port Wine & rice stuff (it's really good) using her pressure cooker. Unfortunately the lid did not seal, and the water boiled out. (She was on a long conference call and didn't realize what had happened until too late.)

So now we have an aluminum pot with a quarter inch or more of carbonized cow stuck to the bottom.

I'm wondering: Is there some safe, non toxic chemical reaction that will clean this...some chemical that will combine with the carbon but not react with the aluminum or damage it in any way?

Doozer
04-17-2015, 09:38 AM
Make some soup.
It can only add flavor.
You might have the mak'ins of a great recipe there.
-D

BigBoy1
04-17-2015, 09:59 AM
Try covering the base with water and boiling the pot. When the water boils it tends to start under the bottom coating and flake off the material stuck on the bottom. It may take several tries to get it all. It worked for me yesterday as the same thing happened - I was on the phone and the sausages I was cooking were burnt offering fit for a king! Adding about 0.25" of water to the pan and boiling for about 5 minutes loosed up the charcoal and with a swipe of the dish cloth the pan bottom was clean.

bob_s
04-17-2015, 11:21 AM
Vertical mill with long ball end mill and remove the first 0.245" of Charcow.

Black_Moons
04-17-2015, 11:28 AM
Yep pretty much just water, heat, work, time. Water is a great solvent.

My fav is when I burn the hell out of pizza. I have learned you can just scrape off the burn cheese and eat the toppings, as the crust is a total loss.

davidh
04-17-2015, 11:39 AM
I thought i saw somewhere that boiling cream of tatar in the water that you put in the pot, will cause the stuff to fall off. . . . . maybe my mind is slipping. . . but i did find a neat way to increase the usage of waffle irons :)

ironmonger
04-17-2015, 11:44 AM
John and Black Moons...

You guys have stumbled onto a new diet system.

Definitely not 'Good Eats' :>)

paul

Mike Nash
04-17-2015, 12:36 PM
Elbow grease, lots and lots of elbow grease.



:D

boslab
04-17-2015, 01:04 PM
Boil some apples in it, mums recipe, cleans pans nicely
Mark

Hopefuldave
04-17-2015, 01:06 PM
Boil up some rhubarb stalks, comes up beautiful!
It contains Oxalic acid (AKA wood bleach), dissolves the carbon without dissolving the aluminium, works on two-strokes too...

boslab
04-17-2015, 01:10 PM
There you go, rhubarb and apples!, oxalic and muriatic, bound to shift something, rhubarb aka boiled used to be called in the army, squirt, I wondered why, well you won't be constipated after it lol
Mark

Weston Bye
04-17-2015, 02:30 PM
Charcow??? At first I thought of another notorious poster who had a less than perfect grasp of the English language and had to look twice to see who started the thread. But, after reading the text of the post, I realize that John Hobdeclipe has excellent imagination and creativity and came up with the perfect word. Good job John!

Davidhcnc
04-17-2015, 03:24 PM
Leave it in a field with sheep for a week.

CarlByrns
04-17-2015, 05:44 PM
Zep citrus based cleaner, available at good hardware stores or janitorial supplies. I use it to clean the pitch off saw blades and .250 thick burned on honey barbeque sauce from a baking pan.

Amazing stuff.

Bob Fisher
04-17-2015, 06:13 PM
I thought the same as Wes initially, and was going to post accordingly. Then I reconsidered ' Tis a clever play on words. Bob.

Mcostello
04-17-2015, 09:56 PM
Oven cleaner.

NiftyNev
04-17-2015, 10:58 PM
I thought someone said aluminium pots are not good for cooking in. Not good for your health? Dump the pot a buy a stainless steel one maybe?

J Harp
04-17-2015, 11:07 PM
I'd check the cooker carefully before pressurizing it again, it's possible that the bottom could have been damaged by overheating. Not saying it was damaged, just bringing up the possibility.

BigBoy1
04-18-2015, 08:10 AM
I thought someone said aluminium pots are not good for cooking in. Not good for your health? Dump the pot a buy a stainless steel one maybe?

That was an "Old Wives Tale" started by the steel cookware makers after WWII when the aluminum companies came out with cookware. They didn't like the competition.

CarlByrns
04-18-2015, 08:17 AM
That was an "Old Wives Tale" started by the steel cookware makers after WWII when the aluminum companies came out with cookware. They didn't like the competition.

Maybe not. There is a link between Alzheimer's and aluminium.

MikeWI
04-18-2015, 11:09 AM
Maybe not. There is a link between Alzheimer's and aluminium.
Again, Wive's tale. This was totally disproved years ago. Aluminum is coated with Aluminum oxide, which prevents the metal from leaching in the first place. A quick search gave this quote "There have been concerns in the past that aluminum cookware increases the risk for Alzheimer's disease. The Alzheimer's Association reports that using aluminum cookware is not a major risk for the disease.:" (http://www.nytimes.com/health/guides/nutrition/cooking-utensils-and-nutrition/overview.html)

Lu47Dan
04-18-2015, 11:09 AM
Maybe not. There is a link between Alzheimer's and aluminium.
Nope, here is the linkee (http://www.alz.org/alzheimers_disease_myths_about_alzheimers.asp?gcli d=COTkpPeQgMUCFdY8gQodIxgAhg)
Dan.

RichR
04-18-2015, 11:59 AM
Oven cleaner.

Read the instructions first to make sure it doesn't attack aluminum.

CarlByrns
04-18-2015, 01:00 PM
Again, Wive's tale. This was totally disproved years ago. Aluminum is coated with Aluminum oxide, which prevents the metal from leaching in the first place. A quick search gave this quote "There have been concerns in the past that aluminum cookware increases the risk for Alzheimer's disease. The Alzheimer's Association reports that using aluminum cookware is not a major risk for the disease.:" (http://www.nytimes.com/health/guides/nutrition/cooking-utensils-and-nutrition/overview.html)

Maybe not. http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/03/22/aluminum-toxicity-alzheimers.aspx

And this: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3056430/

Enjoy.

CarlByrns
04-18-2015, 01:00 PM
Nope, here is the linkee (http://www.alz.org/alzheimers_disease_myths_about_alzheimers.asp?gcli d=COTkpPeQgMUCFdY8gQodIxgAhg)
Dan.

Maybe not. http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/03/22/aluminum-toxicity-alzheimers.aspx

And this: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3056430/

Enjoy.

J Tiers
04-18-2015, 04:55 PM
Try covering the base with water and boiling the pot. When the water boils it tends to start under the bottom coating and flake off the material stuck on the bottom. It may take several tries to get it all. It worked for me yesterday as the same thing happened - I was on the phone and the sausages I was cooking were burnt offering fit for a king! Adding about 0.25" of water to the pan and boiling for about 5 minutes loosed up the charcoal and with a swipe of the dish cloth the pan bottom was clean.

If it works, fine, but usually I find the water will not get through to the bottom, so it boils above the "charcow". Freezing might also work, IF the water can get under there. Maybe a tad of dish detergent as a wetting agent?

As for the aluminum thing, some foods are at the right PH to remove the coating and attack the base metal....

Rosco-P
04-25-2015, 08:23 AM
A little late, but: http://www.finishing.com/201/92.shtml

Tried electrolytic cleaning on cast iron pan purchased at a tag sale. Couple of hours lifted all the burnt on residue, quick wipe and ready for seasoning.

john hobdeclipe
04-25-2015, 10:18 AM
Some interesting ideas here. The rhubarb thing sounded especially intriguing. I was ready for a long drawn out fight with this.

But...while trying to determine what to do I had the pot sitting half full of water with a heavy dose of dishwashing liquid. And after about 4 days or so the crud started breaking loose on its own. A little persuasion with a spoon would break off largish chunks. Then another couple of days with water and dish liquid and nearly all of the crud broke loose. Some quality time with a scotchbrite type pad and the job was done.

I've made notes of some of these suggestions for future reference. The "Electolytic Cleaning of Aluminum" scheme on the finishing.com site sounds like it may have some potential in many other applications.

The pot seems not to have any damage, and fortunately the Presto company is still in business and lists replacement seals for this and many other of their cookers, so we should be OK on that.

Baz
04-25-2015, 12:16 PM
bit late to the scene:
Yes or is it No, you shouldn't cook acidic foods in aluminium. Look up "Camelford water treatment incident".
However as this is HSM I think the course was clear. Condemn the pot and melt it down to cast a tool of some sort.

Black_Moons
04-25-2015, 12:37 PM
bit late to the scene:
Yes or is it No, you shouldn't cook acidic foods in aluminium. Look up "Camelford water treatment incident".
However as this is HSM I think the course was clear. Condemn the pot and melt it down to cast a tool of some sort.

rofl. "Dear wife. Melted down your aluminum cookware. You'll thank me when your 85 and can still remember this day. You'll complain every month till then however... But remember I am doing this for you!"