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Michael549's Profile

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YES IT'S TRUE! PYREX EXPLODES

I am sorry about what you say happened. On this forum there is a very long discussion about pyrex cookware. The basic idea is simple - hot pyrex cookware from the oven should never be placed on the stovetop - wether gas, electric or smooth-top. Why? In olden days one would put hot pyrex cookware on a trivet - wire, wooden, cork. rolled up dry dish towel, etc. - not on something cold or something hot. The idea behind the trivet is to allow the pryex to cool itself slowly. What most people do not realize is that pyrex cookware can not withstand sharp temperature changes of either the hot or cold variety. What most folks do not consider is that there is great temperature difference between the hot dish and the cold counter-top, the cold glass stove top, etc. What has changed over the years - is not really the material of the glass - but rather our usage. In olden days - one simply never thought to put a very hot pot on a formica countertop (it would burn it), or a on table-cloth, etc - there were trivets and pot-holders for that task. Or to take very cold pots directly from the frig and into a very hot oven - ovens had to heat up, etc. In reading several of the messages - there's 100+ message forum about pyrex and Consumer Reports - there are several instances where folks are using the pyrex cookware in ways that a) are clearly marked on the box as not warranted, b) in ways that are clearly noted as causing damage (wet surface, etc), and c) in ways at first sight - don't seem to have an explanation - but upon reflection often clearly go back to a usage problem. Pyrex cookware has been and continues to be used by millions with millions of pieces of cookware out there in the world. Purely statistically speaking some folks will have a problem while plenty of others won't have any problems. You admit that the meat loaf dish was cooked at 350 degrees, and that the glass stove-top was room temperature - see the temperature difference right there! You should have used a trivet for the hot dish.

Aug 16, 2012
Michael549 in Cookware

Are glass lids safe for oven use?

Usually the glass Pyrex pot lids are just fine for over usage. Such Pyrex lids have been used on casserole dishes, Corningware dishes, and plenty of other types of pans for decades. The pot lids are not meant to be used under the broiler, or to placed upon direct heat (for example placed directly on a stove-top burner). These pot lids are just fine for their intended purpose - to be a pot lid - whether on a stove top or in the oven. The metal band around the Pyrex pot top lid helps with transferring or handling the heat, and to help the lid from chipping against the metal rim of the pot. These pot lids are very safe to use.

Mike

Dec 04, 2011
Michael549 in Cookware

Griddle for glass top stove

There are restaurant type stoves that have a metal sheet covering a gas flame - in effect a "smooth-top" range. Upon either the glass smooth-top ranges or the metal smooth-top ranges one does not put the food directly on the "smooth-top". First there is the issue of "food and temperature" control - it is simply much too difficult to control the food that way. Second - the surface is meant to transfer the heat as quickly as possible - meaning that there is LESS control over the temperature than in using a regular pan. Third there is the clean up - you're just making a big mess of your cook-top that you're just going to have to clean up. Washing out a skillet is no big deal. Think about the regular household griddle - large enough to do its job but small enough to easily handle and clean. Ever clean a restaurant stove griddle? This is one of those times when what may seem "obvious" is best to be done the old fashioned way inside a pot or a pan.

Mike

Dec 04, 2011
Michael549 in Cookware

Glass cook tops

When Corning the company was making Corningware in the 1970's, the company came out with the first smooth-glass-top stoves and cooktops. The Corningware dishes were made of Pyroceram, and the cooktops were made of Pyroceram. Corning even went to the trouble of making sure all of its cookware (and the cookware given with the stove) had flat bottoms to work properly on the smooth-top stoves. So basically what we're talking about is glass cookware working on glass smooth-top ranges by the original maker. I've never heard that the Corningware melted to the cooktop! I even have a portable Corningware electric smooth-top skillet that no matter how hot the unit gets - there is a thermostat that regulates the heat on all electric stove-tops - the glass is not melting. Corningware, like most glasses simply are not going to melt or become soft at anything close to the usual temperatures found in the normal kitchen. Corningware - the pyroceram kind (blue-flower dishes, etc) easily withstands a range of temperatures from 800 degrees to 3,000 degrees - temperatures not found in normal kitchens. (That is why it was used for missle cones and space craft in the 1950's.)

Of course Pyrex, the clear glass stuff that baking dishes, coffee and teapots are made out of is a completely different topic - those were not good for a smooth top range. One - often the bottoms were not really smooth in the first place. We are not talking about those items.

Of course, over time the kinds of glass used in smooth-top ranges may have changed. Maybe different formulas of glass are used, etc. However on electric stoves - (coil, smooth-top, etc.) like in electric ovens there is a thermostat that regulates the temperatures. There is no way that any maker of cook stoves is going to allow 800 degree and higher temperatures - the lawsuits would be just too great.

Now there has been a general movement away from the Pyroceram (the glass-ceramic kind) brand of Corningware (by a company called World Kitchen - the maker of current Corningware) - toward the "stoneware" kinds of dishes - that were not rated for the stove-top. These days they also make Pyrex baking dishes. I suppose (that's just me) in order for users to not become confused about which Corningware is which - it is easier to just suggest that not any be used. When in doubt about something - it seems that it is easier these days to just say "No".

To sum up - I think that the idea that the glasses will fuse together is a myth. I think that in this lawsuit crazy world it is better for stove-makers to "limit" the kinds of cookware that can be used on their stoves - simply because there is a great variety out there (cookware, conditions, how people do stuff, etc.). Sometimes the stuff that is used today IS inferior to the stuff used in the past - along with advisories to limit usage - because it is better if the folks just buy another one when it breaks (rather than it not breaking in the first place). These are just my thoughts. There are times when stuff just changes - and you have to change with them - also.

Mike

Dec 04, 2011
Michael549 in Cookware

Why did my Pyrex baking dish explode?

It would be good to acknowledge that there is a difference between the pyrex baking dishes (casseroles, pie pans, lagasna pans), and the pyrex glass coffee pots, teapots, and double-boilers that were made years or decades ago. Today in the stores - one will find pyrex baking dishes - casseroles, pie pans, lagasna pans, mixing bowls, etc with large red letters saying Pyrex on the packing material. Years ago - there were pyrex coffee pots - Alice on the Brady Bunch used one all of the time - even on Bewitched. Plus double-boilers and teapots all made for the stove-top. Yes - all of these items are "pyrex" - just like many of today's coffee pots - for example - Mr. Coffee, etc. So when folks say that "Pyrex" can go on the stove-top - they should really be talking about the coffee pots, teapots, double-boilers - items that were specifically designed for the stove-top.

Yes, the baking dishes are called "pyrex" - but they were NEVER DESIGNED OR INTENDED FOR THE STOVE-TOP. This means the casseroles, the pie plates, the lasagna pans, etc. These items were meant for the oven where the heat surrounds the whole dish, rather than being concentrated on the bottom of the dish. Usually it is best to put the dish with food inside into the oven, and then turn on the heat - that way everything heats up gradually - at least that is the way I've seen it recipes, and the way I've done it.

The very first message in this series has a person putting a pyrex baking dish on the stove-top, turning on the burner to follow a recipe - the person acknowledges that they put a BAKING DISH on the stove-top. Then they wonder just why did the dish cracked. It is simple - it was a BAKING DISH! The baking dishes already have notices that they are not intended or to be used on the stove top. It is like expecting a metal pie-pan to work like a skillet - when the two types of pans have different purposes and different capabilities. Metal pie-pans are made thin to better quickly cook the pies, the oven itself spreads the heat. Skillets have thicker bottoms to spread the heat over the surface to better fry eggs or fry chicken. Two different kinds of pans - for different purposes - regardless of the fact that they are made of metal. Those thin foil metal pie pans that come with "Jiffy-Popcorn" will never be mistaken for a real skillet even though it is made of metal. The pryex baking dishes - like other glass or ceramic casseroles, baking dishes, and pie pans - have thicker walls to better spread the heat inside the oven - they were not made to distribute the heat from one point over the whole of the dish. Pyrex baking dishes were made for the oven, period.

Pyrex baking dishes were made for baking - not stove top usage - it is really that simple. Today it is difficult to find the pyrex double-boilers of old, or the thick coffee and teapots. These days - many of the glass coffee and teapots are of the variety where one pours in boiling water into the coffee or tea - rather than putting the whole pot on the stove-top. Notice the thinner glass walls of these coffee and tea pots - to better transfer the heat - usually to something like water.

Pyrex baking dishes have been used for their intended purposes for decades by millions of people in their homes - they are generally safe, durable and reliable enough. Yes, some folks have had problems - statistically that would be case - even if some folks did not abuse the dishes. Each tale of woe or problems - can be matched by several tales where nothing bad happened at all. Folks are free to decide what materials or equipment they will have or not have in their own kitchens. Just the plain facts.

Nov 24, 2011
Michael549 in Cookware
1

Pyroceram on the stovetop?

It should be just fine on the stovetop - noting that pot-holders will be needed since the dish doess not have handles. It is the lack of handles - in this case - requires one to be careful.

Nov 10, 2011
Michael549 in Cookware

Pyroceram on the stovetop?

I am sorry - in your letter the dish was described as a baking dish. Can you please describe its shape or size. Is it more of a rectangular roasting pan, or more of a square dish? Roasting pans are often not great on the stovetop for heat distribution issues - regardless of the material used to make the pan. These kinds of pans are not skillets where the whole pan is over the heat source. So the pan being pyroceram can take the heat- but the goal is for all of the food to be heated, not just food near the heat source. More information is helpful.

Nov 09, 2011
Michael549 in Cookware

Pyroceram on the stovetop?

If this cookware is the pyroceram type of Corningware, then generally one can use it on the stovetop. However there are the simple practical issues - this casserole dish does not have any handles. Handling a hot dish can be dangerous when it does not have good handles. The souffle dishes were meant for the oven, where one use pot-holders. Look at the bottom of the dish -is it smooth and glazed? If so it is the pyroceram kind of Corningware. If the bottom is rough, coarse and un-glazed then the dish is the newer "stoneware" Corningware -which is not meant for the stovetop. All of the items are however suitable for the oven.

Nov 09, 2011
Michael549 in Cookware

Why did my Pyrex baking dish explode?

Purely just for my own education. What kind of countertop was the mixing cup sitting on next to the cooktop? No I am not a CSI just curious. What you described is both frightening and puzzling. Mike

Nov 08, 2011
Michael549 in Cookware

Cast Iron Dutch Ovens - which brand best?

I will try to clear some confusion. 1) Things change, and then they change back.

Corning the company made a product called Corningware from the 1950's to the 1990's, until they sold the Housewares division to another company called World Kitchen which has since been making the product. The original Corningware dishes were made of pyroceram - a glass ceramic material original intended for use on space cones and missiles. Frankly the material could go to/from extreme kitchen temperatures of hot and cold with out any damage, and very durable -- in many ways much better than Pyrex - another product of Corning.

According to one book that I read about the company - the pyroceram products were "too good" - they lasted for years, they were fairly durable, etc. Meaning that once folks bought a set - they did not "need" to buy another set for "years". The housewares division was losing money - so many product lines were cut. The housewares division was sold to World Kitchen - the present maker.

Corning made millions of the white dishes with the blue flower (and over time plenty of other colors). The bottoms of all of the pans were smooth and white. Jump to the 2000's - World Kitchen changed the formula for their dishes (for whatever reason) to the stoneware material. The stoneware material available in stores for years - has a coarse un-finished bottom - and is clearly indicated-marked-stamped not for stove top usage. It is age of the cookware, and the material of the cookware - that matters.

Thus a person could talk about Corningware being both for the stove-top, and not for the stove-top at the same and both would be correct. Persons with the older Corningware dishes - made from pyroceram are correct in that the cookware goes to/from the stovetop, oven, freezer, frig, microwave, etc. Persons with the newer Corningware (stoneware) can do all of that except the stovetop, and not instantly - the dishes should be cool (not cold) when transferred to the oven or frig.

Pyrex is a whole other class - but similar rules apply. Corning made many Pyrex coffee pots, double-boilers, teapots, etc. that were clearly meant for stove-top usage. Even Alice the maid on the Brady Bunch was often seen holding a Pyrex coffee pot. Also the same company (and others) put out a whole line of bakeware - pie plates, casseroles, baking dishes - that were intended for BAKING. Corning the company stopped making the coffee pots, double-boilers, etc. - leaving the baking dishes as examples of Pyrex. These baking dishes were clearly not intended for the stove-top. In an oven - the heat is gradual and surrounds the dish - so the heat applied to the dish is uniform.

There was another product by Corning called "Visions" a transparent glass-ceramic set of pots and pans intended for the stove-top, oven, frig, freezer, microwave, etc - just like the white pyroceram dishes. Many folks call these dishs "Pyrex" but they are not - the formula for the glass is different. These dishes were often brown or kind of magneta or purple in color.

To sum up - a person can be talking about Pyrex as being both for the stove-top, and not for the stove-top - and both would be correct. The baking dishes - pie plates, casseroles, lasagna pans were not intended for and are clearly not meant for the stovetop - as marked on the products. It is those baking dishes that survive to today - available in stores, etc.

The Pyrex pots that where available in the 1970's maybe up to the 1980's - the coffee pots, double-boilers and teapots - were clearly meant for the stove-top - and weirdly enough were not meant by design for the oven. Different dishes - different purposes.

Not made by Corning, or World Kitchen - but other companies have come out over time with glass pyrex casseroles - teapots - coffee pots - all meant for the stove top. While other companies have come out with deep dish casseroles - 3 and 4qt casseroles. These deep dish casseroles give the appearance that they could be for the stove-top but are marked for oven and microwave usage only.

Glassware - like all hot pots (of all kinds) should be handled with care. Remember back in the old days - hot pots were placed on trivets, cork-pads, or dry towels - when placed on the counter-top or table. Those kinds of rules remain in effect. Many "problems" would be reduced if those simple rules were followed again. Even though many modern counter-tops of granite, etc - can take the heat - that does not mean it is good for the pot. Back in the day - putting a hot pot on the counter-top burned the formica counter-top - leaving a burn mark - not good.

For the purposes of being a Dutch Oven - again - cast-iron, enameled cast-iron, deep dish Pyrex, Corningware (either stone-ware or pyroceram), Visions, Calphalan, etc. - are all good choices if all that is being talked about is oven usage. For dishes that require a bit of stove-top usage and then a transfer to the oven - not all of the above items may be suitable. Different dishes - different purposes - different foods.

Hope this helps. Mike

Nov 07, 2011
Michael549 in Cookware

Cast Iron Dutch Ovens - which brand best?

For a dutch oven - there is a difference between thermal conductivity, and heat retention. Depending upon what one is cooking - generally in a dutch oven one wants heat retention - something that cast iron, corningware - pyroceram dishes, and some other metals are good at. Basically, here I'm using heat retention to mean - once the pan is hot it stays hot to thoroughly cook the food inside, and not burn it.

For example - those thin walled tall sauce-pans don't make good Dutch Ovens not because they don't have great thermal conductivity - yes they transfer the heat to the food, but often do so very quickly that the pan just does not STAY hot. Dutch Oven are great when heat is gradually released - that is for cooking that takes place over a long period of time. One does not NEED a high degree of heat since the pan itself holds and spreads the heat applied.

A second point - Corningware - especially the pyroceram dishes produced up until the 1990's (white blue-flower and similar dishes) - are just plain different from Pryex dishes - especially for stove top usage. All of these items - Cast Iron, enameled cast iron, Corningware (pryoceram dishes), and deep dish Pryex casseroles can go into the oven for long cooking periods. All of these items will transfer the heat to the food and retain the heat over a long period of time - good characteristics.

Where Pryex deep dish casseroles fail is the stove-top usage - often needed before a transfer to the oven. Pryex deep dish casserole dishes are often not meant for the stove-top. Need-less to say - the baking dishes - pie plates, smaller casseroles, lasanga pans, etc. - are simply not meant for the stove-top use - not only based upon the glass material but also the design of the dish itself. Pryex baking dishes were for baking - enough said. In another message post there are several messages about folks using baking dishes in ways that were not intended for baking dishes - and then they wonder why they have problems. Just because one can put a metal pie pan on the stove-top - does not mean that pan makes a great skillet. Different pans - different purposes.

Again, most of this is a matter of preference - cast iron, enameled cast iron, Corningware (pyroceram dishes), Calphalan, etc. Each of these pots have their own characteristics - both suitable and not-suitable for certain uses. There simply is not one "best material" for all uses in all cases. The needs of cooking and the food cooked determine what is "good enough"

Plus on a general note - I'm not sure if the test of good cookware is wether or not they can survive a drop from 3-feet on to a cement floor. Such drops might really not be good for the food that is inside the pan, or for the ears of the neighbors downstairs.
- Mike

Nov 06, 2011
Michael549 in Cookware

opinions on pyrex sets?

I suppose that you are talking about Pyrex mixing bowls and bakeware with some very tight lids. These items for just fine for mixing, food preparation, and the ones listed as good for baking should be good for baking - provided the precautions listed on the box and booklet are followed. Generally no sudden temperature changes, handling hot dishes with cold wet dish rags, no stove-top usage at all, etc. The internet and web - like the media - likes the sensational. Millions of people the world over use Pyrex mixing bowls and dishes without problems - such as sudden breakage, explosions or other sensational happenings - especially where heat is not involved. Mixing bowls - whether pyrex or not - are fine for mixing.

Nov 06, 2011
Michael549 in Cookware

Consumer Reports Investigates Exploding Pyrex

I'm going to use the buying a new car analogy "Your Mileage May Vary". It is fair to say that SOME folks have had a problem - exploding cookware, breakage, etc. While others have not had problems. Now whether the instance of a problem is due to something the person did or did not do, or nature of their surroundings, the equipment or conditions of their kitchens, the age, makeup or condition or treatment of the cookware, or other stuff I can't think of to mention -- all of it is part of the debate, hence this long message stream. To acknowledge that some folks have had a problem is not the same as denying that there are some 371 million pieces of the cookware out there in the world. To acknowledge that there are some 371 million pieces of the cookware out there in the world - and that plenty of people found the cookware to be useful - durable - folks who in some cases have had long histories with the cookware - simply is not the same thing as denying that some folks have had problems. It is simply that "your mileage may vary". In a pure statistical sense - yes - some folks will have problems (it is glass cookware after all), and yes some folks - plenty of folks won't have problems. However there is a sense that "most people" don't have problems or don't report a problem. There is also the issue of the echo chamber called the "internet" and news media had NEEDS problems, and stuff to report about. Those are discussions for another time. Again, to report that there are 371 million pieces of the cookware out there in the world - meaning that somebody's using it - is not the same as denying that some folks have had problems. To report that some folks have had problems is not to deny that some folks, maybe plenty of folks have not had problems. Again, your mileage may vary.

Oct 16, 2011
Michael549 in Cookware

Consumer Reports Investigates Exploding Pyrex

Yes, you are right about the French White dishes that were meant for souffle's. Often times the Corningware dishes that did not have any handles (pyroceram based I mean) were NOT meant for the stovetop. Not because the dish itself could not take the heat, but because there were no handles - it would be a safety hazard handling a hot dish on the stovetop. Often such dishes were not recommended for the stovetop. I forgot to mention that tidbit, thanks. Mike

Apr 28, 2011
Michael549 in Cookware

I threw out my non-stick pans today

What do they do? Well, in my house the following crimes against non-stick have been committed by my dear husband -

beating scrambled eggs in the pan, with a fork
cutting meat, in the pan, with a steak knife
using a metal spatula to "chop" whatever is cooking in the pan
stirring soup with a metal spoon or fork
making mashed tatters in the stock pot, with a handheld electric mixer

I was replacing sets every 12-18 months.
-------------

Has this man met my mother?

I swear that they are made from the same cloth! I had to switch to all stainless-steel because of her! Good decent pans that lasted for years before she arrived one by one had to be thrown out because she took over the cooking and abused them. It was criminal! The woman pokes EVERYTHING with a sharp knife, always grabs the first metal object to cook with, never puts the pot on the center of the burner - flames going up the sides, she is a trip! Are you sure that they have never met?

Apr 16, 2011
Michael549 in Cookware

i need pots and pans

I would make the suggestion to not spend good money on a set of cookware, but rather buy stuff as you need them, and they prove useful to you. For example in a typical set of cookware of skillets, saucepans and stockpots - some items might simply not get used because of the type of cooking that you do, and who you cook for. For example one could have several skillets of different types - non-stick, cast iron, stainless-steel, etc and switch off from one to the other depending upon the meals and needs at the time. If you happen to cook small items for just two persons regularly (for example) collections of large stock pots and large saucepans might not be needed - while more smaller saucepans might be more of a fit. Do you bake a lot of casseroles or oven dishes? If so, your cookware might include many of those pieces. I'm just suggesting that you let your "cooking life" be your guide to the cookware that you buy. There are very few very wrong choices in this area - and one can always buy something that they need in many places that are not very expensive. What works is what works for you! Mike

Apr 16, 2011
Michael549 in Cookware

Consumer Reports Investigates Exploding Pyrex

Most likely the French White casseroles at BB & B and at your grocer's are made of the same white stoneware composition. Simply looking at the bottom of the cookware is a sign - is there a ridge or ring on the bottom of the cookware, is this ridge coarse?

If so - the dish is made of the white stoneware composition. Most of the corningware dishes using the older pyroceram composition with wide handles had smooth flat bottoms to be used on smooth top ranges, and those with the nub handles were clearly to stovetop usage.

Simply turn over the display models and look at the bottoms. Or read the box, it will say "no stove top usage". These particular models have been out for 20 years or more - so there are plenty of them in stores.

Apr 15, 2011
Michael549 in Cookware

Consumer Reports Investigates Exploding Pyrex

I do not mean to be condescending or insulting, nor do I wish to imply that "what folks say happened - did not happen". I am not a shill for any company etc. Nor was I talking about EVERY member of this forum, either. I am not trying to explain EVERY situation. However a few messages above this one are folks talking about using the cookware in ways that were clearly marked on the box, in the paper guides, and on the cookware AS NOT TO DO! From folks talking about putting the cookware on the stove to boil, others putting it under the broiler, others putting it on the stove even after they just turned the burner off - as if the burner would not still be hot, etc. So yes, after some 370 million pieces of the product sold it does stand to reason that some folks might indeed have problems through no "fault" of their own. There are several messages just as I have described in this stream and in the other streams on this website about pyrex dishes. Clearly one fact has to be made clear: " Things made of glass can crack it - is the nature of glass to crack - it is the conditions, stresses, and what was done that matter."

I've been told that it is best to place hot pyrex cookware with hot food inside, on a dry cloth towel or trivet. Many folks (but not everyone) have granite countertops that are cold to the touch or when placing a hot dish upon them may (I said may) create not a heat crack problem but an impact problem - the dish was bumped on the hard surface. Again, that's just a guess - I was not there. I have cork-board trivets that I put hot dishes on to protect the counters and table.

The Consumer Affairs report showed that with Pyrex dishes that there should be NOT BE ANY WATER on the granite countertop, or (by extension) on the cloth towels/pot holders. That is a sure-fire way to crack the dishes, nor should one pour cold liquids into a hot dish. The Consumer Affairs report indicated that they did not examine every case or claim - thus they could not "verify" any of the claims made. Their report also showed that when the cookware is used NOT in compliance with the safety guides, it will crack - a feature that they tested on purpose. In their tests, they were able to make all the cookware crack/break regardless of which formula of Pyrex was used.

The whole "soda lime issue" is that Corningware and World Kitchen makes the Pyrex cookware (and has for 60 years), better able to withstand bumps and bruises - but leaves it a bit vulnerable to heat/cold related cracking. While the alternative, the borosilicate glass that is mentioned in the message is a bit better to resist heat/cold related cracking, but does not hold up well to bumps and bruises. Most folks complained of bumping, dropping and bruising that cracked the cookware - which they feel that have dealt with by using the soda lime formula. There were also issues of costs, enviromental protection, etc in the decisions 40-60 years ago for the movement to soda lime glass - according to what I have read on Snopes and other sites.

I am a user of the older white Corningware and Visions products - which can withstand a variety of "abuse", and in comparison I only have a few Pyrex bakeware pieces. I have however plenty of Pyrex pot lids. I've had these items for years, about three decades. Now I feel old saying that. (smile).

The new Corningware items since the 1990's produced by World Kitchen is NOT the pyroceramic dishes produced earlier, but a white stoneware composition. These newer items are made for the oven, fridge/freezer, dishwasher, etc. - but not the stovetop. They CAN NOT withstand direct heat, and they say so on the box, paper guides and on the cookware itself. So no the "new stuff" does not perform the way the "old stuff" did because the formula used to make the dishes was changed, but that is clearly said so on the box.

Some folks go on Ebay or other vintage websites to buy the older white Corningware or Visions products, or order the white Corningware or Visions from the "over-seas" websites of World Kitchen. Usually the word - Classic is applied to the name on the website, for example - Corningware Classic, etc. World Kitchens does not market the "stove-top" capable cookware in the Unitied States - either Pyrex, Corningware or Visions.

Again, I was not trying to be condescending or insulting.

Apr 14, 2011
Michael549 in Cookware

Consumer Reports Investigates Exploding Pyrex

There was a very interesting article in the January 2011 - edition of Consumer Affairs magazine about Pyrex and Anchor Hocking cookware, and the whole issue of exploding cookware, the history of pyrex, accidents using the cookware, etc. There is also a Snopes page on this issue.

1) A few facts, Pyrex was a "brand trade mark name of Corning" for its heat-proof glass cookware invent in 1915, and it the earlest years of the cookware the cookware was made of borosilicate glass, then both borosilicate glass and soda lime glass, and now in America only soda line glass. Both Corning, and now World Kitchen report that dishes labeled "Pyrex"have been made of soda lime glass for the past 60 years, the changeover occuring in the 1940's. Corning sold its consumer housewares division to World Kitchen in 1998, which has produced the Pyrex products in the same plants using the same materials since then.

If appears that at some point both borosilicate glass and soda lime glass were used to make Pyrex dishes, but by the 1980's, such dishes were made of soda lime glass for several reasons - cost, environmental issues, product safety, etc.

2) All glassware products suffer from thermal shock - that is a rapid temperature change, however some glasses handle thermal shock better than other glasses. There are some 370 million pieces of Pyrex cookware in use, it is found in 80% of American homes - suggesting that many consumers find the products useful.

3) Pyrex is not "indestructible" - all glass will break under certain conditions, and the cookware has usage guidelines that should be followed. For example, generally the cookware marked as Pyrex (regardless of being soda lime glass or borosilicate glass) in its use guidelines say to NOT PUT the cookware under the BROILER. The cookware was not designed for such direct heat uses.

So what do we have in this message stream - folks who put the dishes under the broiler and who then wondered why the dish cracked! DAH! If they tell you doing "X" will crack the dish, and you "do X" - then why are you surprised that it cracked?

So what do we have in this message stream - folks who put the dishes on hot stove tops, then they wonder why the dish cracked! If they tell you that doing "X" will crack the dish, and you "do X" - they why are you surprise that it cracked?

4) Corningware - the white dishes are based om a glass-ceramic process that produces dishes that can withstand a variety of temperature changes. The material was originally designed for use as the nose cones of ballistic missles. Millions of the white dishes with the blue cornflower and other designs were produced. Corningware was manutactured by Corning, until the sale to World Kitchen, and for a few years it was also produced by them.

The original pyroceramic glass version of CorningWare was removed from the US market in the late 1990s. It was re-introduced in 2009, due to popular demand. Since then World Kitchen has produced similar dishes made of common white glazed stoneware. The packaging for these newer CorningWare branded cookware products say specifically that they are not for stovetop use.

5) Visions by Corning was a glass cookware line introduced in 1982 and widely popular Visions was a ceramic cookware line, with glass (Pyrex type) lids. It is available again through World Kitchen, including their outlet stores and through the web.

Visions dishes especially the "base parts" are not Pyrex - only the dish lids are Pyrex. Visions dishers are "tougher" than Pyrex dishes in the sense of handling temperature extremes and changes. So yes, there were videos and commercials showing the "extreme" things that could be done - but these dishes are NOT Pyrex! Visions could go directly from the oven on to the stove for further cooking - Pyrex can not - Pyrex bakeware was not designed or meant for the stove - it says so right on the cookware! Visions like the older white Corningware was made for the stove-top, oven, freezer, etc. and to be taken directly from one to the other. Although most times it is best to actually let food thaw out a bit between switching places - better for the food that is.

Apr 13, 2011
Michael549 in Cookware