I am a perfectionist when it comes to how my cooking pans look. It is almost like a not so gleaming pan is a reflection of me. (I know. Therapy is available for us perfectionist types.) I especially dislike heat rings which look like rainbows in your pans. For years, I have been using Revere Stainless Steel cleaner to remove the rings. Although, I love the product, my carbon footprint has unnecessarily increased from my obsession, not to mention the green that has gone down the drain.
Here are my carbon footprint associated with my compulsion:
- The bottle is plastic. We all know what makes up plastic. Petroleum.
- Even though I try and wash out the empty bottle well (using a lot of water), when it gets to recycling, do they chuck it because I did not do a good job?
- In order to use the product, you have to wash and dry your pot first. Then you have to apply the creme, and thereupon wash the pot again. More water.
- You should shake the product before use. If you don’t pretty soon you are left with just a pasty solution. I bet most people throw it away at that point. I stick my finger in and scoop some out for my pot.
- I can’t seem to find the product in stores anymore. (Maybe people have lives and don’t care about gleaming pots?) Anyway, I have to order it online. Does this increase my carbon footprint? Packaging materials, traveling miles, gasoline, carbon dioxide emissions, paper, etc.
- Who knows about the chemicals in the product, although the bottle says it is nontoxic and biodegradable.
A couple of months ago, I read that I could use lemon juice to clean my stain steel pots. It is a household staple, so what the heck, I thought. I like using simple solutions that save me money and are good for the Earth.
I put some lemon juice in the pot and wiped it with a rag. Rings are gone! See how it shines! I was thrilled with my new cleaning friend.
But wait! What was that dark smudge on the side of the pan? (The picture makes it seem much worse than it is.) I immediately grabbed for my Revere product to see if the smudge would come off. Indeed it did. The Revere product has a something gritty in it.
Take a look at my rag. It has black tarnish on it which did not show up when I just used the lemon juice. I wondered if salt and lemon together would have done the same trick. Readers?
Here are my questions for Green Talk readers:
- Will the lemon juice pit the stainless steel?
- Do any of you use lemon juice to clean your pots or other stainless steel products?
- Any other suggestions for using lemon juice for cleaning?
If you are looking for suggestions, check out this article, “The 15 Secrets to Uses of Lemons.