Antiques Roadshow Item #149: Set of Copper-Clad Sauté Pans

I was about ready to give these away on Freecycle but I thought I ought to poll the opinions of the doper community to see if I might be giving away thousands of dollars of antique cooking utensils without knowing.

Set of six pans ranging in size from 5½ to 10 inches in diameter. As pictured here:

They are a bit beat-up and tarnished. I have never tried to cook in them, I got them over 20 years ago at a yard sale and I have been using them mainly as decoration. The largest pan has some rust stains on the bottom (outside) due to having sat in water for a little while (see the 4th picture linked above). I expect they would look nice if given some TLC by somebody who knows how to restore metal finishes.


Not thousands of dollars, but in the range of a couple hundred dollars, though it would be fairly difficult to get people to buy them - the big thing is all the schmancy anodized stuff, and enameled cast iron stuff.

They are fairly identical to a set my mom has, IIRC she got them for about $500 or so in the early 70s. I know Id snap them up if we saw them on freecycle for sentimental sort of value, as I have my own batterie de cuisine.

Some Wright’s Copper Polish would make a huge difference with those pans. It’s available in most grocery stores and places like Target. It’s a cream you just wipe on, rub with a soft cloth and rinse off. It doesn’t require heavy duty scrubbing. Even ketchup can remove a lot of the tarnish, but won’t leave them as gleaming as a commercial polish.

A good cleaning won’t remove the rust damage though. You could try taking them to a Mom & Pop jewelry store and see what they advise. (The sort of place that works on restoring silver tea services.)

Man, I’d be using those. The best cookware in the world is copper. Its the best, most even conductor of heat. You can reduce sauces with a much lower chance of scorching/burning.

There’s something cool about getting cooking insight from Snake Plissken


I thought he was dead.

I have no idea on cost, but I can say that if I saw those on Freecycle or Craigslist free, I’d snap them up in a white-hot second.

Actually, I’d be willing to cover the shipping to me if you decide to get rid of them (or potentially come get them, if it’s reasonable). PM or e-mail me, if you’re interested.

Which is exactly what I ended up doing. I got well over two dozen responses too, the most of anything I’ve ever given away.

I can believe that! I hope they are well loved by the new owners.