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moment of true happiness.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Clay cooker

Thomas and I were out and about yesterday so I decided to walk through a thrift store and see if there were any new treasures that needed my attention. I always find pretty good books for Thomas and usually he finds a couple for himself (typically nothing I would have picked). I always concede seeing how the books are only a few cents each, and since he is always really good about letting mommy look around, I figure why not.

Well, I came out yesterday with a pile of books and one item that at the time I was pretty stoked about. It is a (drum roll please) ... clay cooker. Looks like it has never been used and is sort of uniquely pretty. I have never actually cooked out of a clay cooker before and didn't/don't know much about the process.

After we got home I started google-ing (aah, my favorite invention of all times!) clay cookers. There are quit a few sites out there that explained how to use these cookers and how to take care of them. Apparently this form of cooking is a very old method. Not surprised by that, seeing how non-stick is nasty little creation from my life time (or there about.) Basically these cookers are used for cooking one pot meals. They are the right size to put a full chicken or small hen in and several veggies. Oh, and one thing I discovered that I was really excited about is the fact that you can cook bread in these cookers, just imagine how pretty that would look!

The one thing I kept reading was that if you owned a clay cooker that has been glazed on the inside bottom to watch out. So of course I quickly got up, removed the lid from my cooker and to my dismay, there was a shiny glossy bottom glaring up at me. Bummer! The sites had pointed out that the glaze may in fact leach lead (if the glaze has lead in it) into our food.

You know me I am not a friend of heavy metals or any other toxic thing out there. But who is really? So sadly I placed my cooker on the shelf till I could find out more about this specific brand. I am of course keeping my fingers crossed that I can find proof some where that this one is indeed safe. Although I am a bit jaded at this point and may just return it to the thrift store and get my four dollars back. I could of course apply that four dollars to the purchase of a brand new clay cooker that is indeed glaze (thus: lead) free. They are relatively inexpensive brand new. Now that I have done all this research on clay cookers I must say I am dying to try it out. No pun intended!!!

So here is where I stand in closing: On the top of my clay cooker it reads, Cordon Bleu Clay Cooker. On the bottom there is a faded blue stamp that says BIA Cordon Bleu Clay Cooker, Portugal. So I have contacted some very friendly ladies at BIA and they are going to try and help me solve this mystery. They are pretty sure this is a very vintage piece, since none of them had ever seen or heard of such a piece. Hopefully after reviewing a few pictures of the cooker some one there will be able to give me a little direction. But I have this gut feeling that if I even have to question it I should probably just let it go.

Never fear gals, I am addicted to cooking gadgets and finds so I will update again on how it is cooking with a clay cooker, one way or another...


  1. Did you ever find out if this clay cooker is safe to use? I just found the EXACT same one at a thrift store, but will return it if its not safe!
    Let me know,

  2. Replies
    1. What was the update? I don't see it. Keep or toss the clay cooker?

  3. Where is the update? I have this same cooker and I am trying to decide whether or not to keep it. Keep or toss?

    1. I just bought the same cooker at a garage sale today for $3, but can't find the follow up on if its safe to use. Hoping it is !

  4. I realize how old this is, but, I have one and have uses it for over 20 years. Love how it cooks a good roast or a chicken. They are amazing finds and not well known.