I just got my Taste of Home newsletter and thought this article might be useful to all of you. Obviously, of the the suggestions will not apply (stainless), but most of them seem to be good general rules Take Care of Your Cookware ROUTINE care of pots and pans will ensure you get the best performance and longest use out of them. Keep these tips in mind when using your cookware: • Cast-iron pans should be seasoned before using to protect the surface and prevent food from sticking. One way to season a cast-iron skillet is to brush the inside with vegetable oil, then add an extra tablespoon of oil to the pan. Place the pan over low heat for 1 hour. When cool, wipe it dry with paper towels. • Use nonmetal utensils during cooking to minimize cuts and scratches to the interior of your pans. • To remove dark stains from an aluminum pot or pan, fill it with water, add 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice and simmer gently until the pan brightens. • To help remove stuck-on food from pots and pans, soak them in hot soapy water. However, if the pan has a sugary or protein-based substance (like eggs) on it, soak it in cold water. • Stainless steel should be washed quickly after cooking salty foods because salt can pit the surface. • Always dry aluminum or stainless steel pans immediately to prevent water spots from forming. • To prevent nonstick linings from damage during storage, place paper towels between the pans when stacking them in your cabinet. Article from Taste of Home February 2006 Newsletter.