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Stainless steel cookwarewhat exactly is ply

Stainless Steel Cookware—What exactly is Ply?

As a vendor of waterless stainless steel cookware, a question that we encounter frequently is «What is Ply?» and it is almost always followed by «How is that different from element?» Ply or element (the two terms are used interchangeably) refers to the number of layers in the bottom of the encapsulated pan. Many believe the more ply the better! These layers are important because they allow even heat flow and durability. The aluminum conducts the heat well in the inner layers. However, it is not desirable on the outside because it corrodes and comes off on the food. The multi-layers spread the heat evenly, insuring that there are no «hot spots.» The thickness of the cookware also reduces chances of the piece warping. Stainless steel protects the food and the cookware itself.

Recently there has been an increase in the number of layers or ply added to the cookware. For cookware to be classified as waterless, it must be at least 5-ply or have five layers. Many companies now feature cookware that has 7-ply, 9-ply and even 12-ply construction. While extra ply will slightly increase the weight of the pan, it does not mean that your food will cook any better or taste any different because of the extra layers. The weight difference in the 7-ply versus the 9-ply, for example, is so slight that if you were blindfolded and picked up the two different ply pans, you would not be able to make a distinction between them. When considering the purchase of cookware, use other factors, such as the number and type of pieces included in the cookware set, rather than multi-ply feature to determine which set is the best choice for you.

The construction of Maxam’s 7-ply KT17ULTRA set was initially made for induction-top stoves. If you have an induction-top stove, you must use this type of cookware. This set, however, may be used on any stove-top, including gas.

The KT17ULTRA 7-ply Layer Construction

Layer-1 304 Surgical Stainless Steel

Layer-2 Carbon Steel

Layer-3 304 Surgical Stainless Steel

Layer-4 Aluminum Alloy

Layer-5 Pure Aluminum

Layer-6 Aluminum Alloy

Layer-7 AISI 430 Stainless Steel

Maxam also offers a KT17 set that is similar to the KT17ULTRA set. Both sets offer the same pieces as part of the set and have many of the same features, such as ability to stack cook, steam-control knobs, phenolic handles, and encapsulated bottoms. The extra ply simply adds more bonding agents in the layering process. Because the KT17 does not use carbon steel in its layering, the cost of this cookware set is typically about $100 less than the KT17ULTRA induction set.

Encapsulated (Warp Resistant Bottoms)

The special design of the bottom of each our pots provides extra strength and rigidity that will always prevent warping. The pans stay flat and hug the burner for maximum heating efficiency during the entire cooking process. A flat bottom is important because it allows as much of the surface as possible to be in contact with the heating surface. The thickness of the (encapsulated) bottom inside the stainless steel shell is also necessary for even heat distribution. Not only will hot spots be eliminated that can often result in burnt foods, but the flat cooking surface also sends out heat evenly in all directions.

It is important to note that all pans (not lids) are oven safe up to 350°. However, they should not be used under a broiler. There are many reputable vendors on the Internet that offer quality waterless stainless steel cookware at affordable prices. Before making that purchase, shop around. Most importantly, learn all you can about waterless cookware and waterless cooking. Once you’ve made an informed decision, I can assure you that you will absolutely love preparing meals for you and your family. To learn more about waterless cooking, you can visit our site-www.thegourmetscookware.com

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