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Guardian Service Gauged Aluminum Safety ?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
I have been given my grandmother's heavy-gauged aluminum
Guardian Service cookware set, but I have concerns over
whether it is safe to use. I've read reports about using
aluminum products that have disturbed me. My mother has
used these heavy pots and casseroles for years, only replacing
them with lightwear cookware in her later years. It would be
most helpful if I had assurance that this wonderful 60 year
old cooking set -- still in excellent condition -- is safe.
Also, if anyone has any tips about using them, I'd be grateful
if you'd pass them along.
post #2 of 6
I too have heard of concerns about using aluminum cookware. I'm not sure though, just how much the concern is justified.
Using wood or plastic utensils will limit the risk of any metal particles getting into the food from scraping with metal tools. And of course we don't make acidic sauces in aluminum because the acid reacts with the metal and turns the sauce gray.
Overall, I wouldn't be too concerned; after all, most commercial kitchens use aluminum cookware and apparently with impunity.

Jock
post #3 of 6

Is Guardian Cookware safe to use

I FOUND THIS ON THE NET. HOPE IT WILL HELP

:chef: ALUMINUM
Aluminum is the most abundant metal on the earth's crust. It is silvery-white, light, non-toxic, and easily machined or cast.

The best heat conductor next to copper, it is very widely used in cooking utensils because of its advantages of great conductivity, lower cost and great strength. Aluminum utensils can either be made by casting or by rolling, and they are easily anodized or covered with a non-stick surface. Aluminum is a reactive metal, and its primary disadvantage is in that acidic foods should not be cooked in it for any length of time.

Because of fears concerning a possible connection between aluminum and Alzheimer's disease, many people are turning away from aluminum cookware. Both the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Alzheimer's Foundation assure us that no link has been found between the use of aluminum utensils and the disease.

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that we absorb less than 4% of the maximum safe dosage from cooking in aluminum utensils. Because aluminum is readily absorbed from many foods, it is estimated that we absorb only between 10% and 20% of our daily intake as a result of cooking in aluminum.

Avoid cooking in pitted aluminum pans; aluminum is absorbed into foods much more readily from pitted ones. And avoid storing foods in uncoated aluminum to prevent absorption. Acidic foods and leafy vegetables absorb the most aluminum.

In some localities, water can contain minerals and alkalis that may be deposited on the surface of the aluminum. Cooking low-acid, salty or alkali foods, or washing in the dishwasher can also cause blackening. The staining or discoloration does not affect the use of the utensil or the food prepared in it. To remove the discoloration, soak in a solution of water and lemon juice or vinegar. If the discoloration is great, boil a solution of two tablespoons of cream of tartar to one quart of water for 5-10 minutes, or boil an acidic product in the cookware, such as tomatoes or apple parings. Then wash in hot, soapy water, rinse and dry.

Cast Aluminum - Utensils made by casting aluminum are porous by nature and require seasoning. Their advantages include being relatively quick to heat, requiring only a low to medium heat source, and they retain heat longer than utensils made by rolling because of the air pockets formed from pouring molten aluminum into a mold. The disadvantages are that they are not as efficient at distributing heat evenly and are more brittle, so care should be taken not to drop them, as they may crack, rather than bend.

Rolled Aluminum - The advantages of utensils made from rolled aluminum, the most common in use today, are that they are more practical because of their lighter weight, they are quick to heat, require only a low to medium heat source, and retain heat well. However, when too thin it is not practical and a disadvantage, since it does not allow the metal enough substance to evenly distribute the heat, causing undesirable hot spots.

Anodized Aluminum - Aluminum is anodized for corrosion resistance, abrasion resistance and esthetic reasons. In other applications, aluminum is anodized for insulation from electricity or adhesion.

Anodizing is the successful development and control of a natural oxidation process that occurs when aluminum is exposed to the atmosphere. Electricity and chemicals are used jointly to produce a hard, transparent surface that is integral with base aluminum.

The result is a surface that is hard (comparable to a sapphire), transparent (similar to glass), insulative and static-resistant, integral with aluminum surfaces and non-flaking, with a wide variety of colors and finishes.

Batch (or piece), sheet, and coil anodizing all consist of three processing stages: pre-treatment, anodizing and post treatment.
- In pre-treatment, the aluminum surface is first cleaned then chemically treated. Etching results in a satin matte appearance. Various degrees of etching can be specified (i.e. light, medium, heavy). Bright-dipping will enhance an already bright aluminum surface, and result in varying degrees of reflective finishes.
- In anodizing, once the surface is prepared, the anodic film is built. Electrical current is passed through an electrolyte bath in which the aluminum has been immersed. The anodize film is built from the aluminum itself, not applied. It is a hard and porous film. The coating thickness may be tightly controlled, based on the end use product.
- In post treatment, the porous anodic film can be colored in this stage. Organic dyes can be used to fill pores with color, or metal salts can be electrochemically deposited at the base of the pores to create a broad spectrum of colors. Many of the colors are fade-resistant. Sealing the anodic film normally consists of a hot water bath that basically swells the pores shut.

The strength of the anodized finish is resultant primarily from the type of pre-treatment, the coating thickness, and the type of anodizing. Hard coat anodizing (Type III), for example, is about 33% thicker than conventional anodizing, giving it greater resistance against corrosion and abrasion. Sulfuric, or conventional, anodizing (Type II) adds corrosion and abrasion resistance and dielectric strength to aluminum. Chromic anodizing (Type I) is primarily for corrosion resistance.

Anodized aluminum, like most metals, can be scratched or gouged. Damaging the surface of anodized metals in this way will remove the anodized coating in that spot. :chef:
post #4 of 6

Do they still make GUARDIAN ware

I was looking to see if i had ever asked about these pots and pans my mother used to have and found this thread from a few years ago. I managed to carry three pieces over here (the recent more restrictive limits on weight on overseas flights has made it impossible to bring anything any more!) and they are amazing. I wondered if anyone knows if they still make them?
I have the griddle and it is virtually non-stick. Sticks less than the teflon pans i have. You can make pancakes with one very faint rubbing of butter on a paper towel, just once, and the whole morning;s pancakes will cook without sticking. And there is beautiful even tempreature.
The surface is much smoother than most aluminum, How did they make them and why don't I ever see them around?
"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
Reply
post #5 of 6
How old did your grandmother live too, and did she have any major health issues? My Grandmother cooked with her GS for over 70 yrs. She was mowing her own yard at 87 yrs old.. she broke her arm at 88 the anestetic had a bad affect on her an she die at 89... She also walked 3 miles untinl she was 85... i don't think the GS hurt her at all::bounce.gif
post #6 of 6

FWIW, here is a Guardian Service web site

Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
Reply
Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
Reply
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