A typical kitchen in an Indian household will always be filled with a myriad of stainless steel utensils, containers, plates, spoons, and bowls. Stainless steel, along with having many health benefits, was the right marriage of modern and traditional for the Indian kitchen when steel was first introduced. Though the modern kitchen may have options of decorative but brittle ceramic and high-quality plastics, stainless steel dinner sets are still a big rage in middle-class Indian households.
Why Stainless Steel?
- Durable and rustproof, stainless steel is one of the most healthy materials to eat and cook in.
- Stainless steel is an amalgam of many essential metals like iron, nickel, and chromium, which during cooking or eating may find their way in your food, which is healthy for your system.
- The higher-grade steel you buy, the lesser the chances of the steel actually leaking any of those metal components in your food, which is also preferred by many.
- Steel bowls, steel thalis, and steel plates will literally last forever. They don’t break, they don’t rust, and they are never ruined.
- Steel lunchboxes are a good option when you’re going out for camping, or in general to have your food on the go.
- Unlike plastic, steel is biodegradable and highly reusable and re-moldable.
- Because of its smooth hard surface, it's more hygienic to use and way easier to clean.
The history disputes the origin of this, now 100-year-old amazing amalgam. One story suggests that it was invented by British metallurgist Harry Brearly in August 1913, who was self-taught from the heart of the British cutlery industry in Sheffield. But the Germans claim that they were the ones who came up with non-corroding steel a year before that. This World War level dispute means that many countries including India, celebrate the steel centenary year, making it easy to resolve the invention date problem.
Versatility in the Kitchen :
In the beginning, stainless steel was rejected as a material to cook in, but a fantastic option for serving food in. Especially given the health benefits, any kind of serving utensils like plates, spoons, bowls, thalis, etc. are all better and more affordable when they are made of steel. Due to its low heat conductivity, it was almost immediately rejected by traditional cooks to be used as a cooking vessel. Pans of other materials were already so adept at making food, that a change wasn’t required. But with some exploration, vessels made of stainless steel started being used, for the very quality of their low heat conductivity, because some dishes are made better because of this quality.