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Scanpan vs. cast iron?

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Scanpan vs. cast iron?

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MCFAC | | Jul 31, 2010 06:59 AM

Hi, I saw Sur La Table is running a sale on Scanpan fry pans. Was about to run to the store, when I decided to check out CI's reviews first. To my surprise, they noted that Scanpan uses PTFE. I wish they had included a traditional seasoned cast iron pan in this review process for comparison.

Here's an excerpt from Wikipedia on PTFE:

"PTFE is a thermoplastic polymer, which is a white solid at room temperature, with a density of about 2.2 g/cm3. According to DuPont, its melting point is 327 °C (621 °F), but its properties degrade above 260 °C (500 °F).[6] PTFE gains its properties from the aggregate effect of carbon-fluorine bonds, as do all fluorocarbons.........

The pyrolysis of PTFE is detectable at 200 °C (392 °F), and it evolves several fluorocarbon gases[10][11] and a sublimate. Animal studies indicate that it is unlikely that these products would be generated in amounts significant to health at temperatures below 250 °C (482 °F),[12] although birds are proven to be much more sensitive to these decomposition products.[11][13]

While PTFE is stable and nontoxic, it begins to deteriorate after the temperature of cookware reaches about 260 °C (500 °F), and decomposes above 350 °C (662 °F).[14] These degradation byproducts can be lethal to birds, and can cause flu-like symptoms in humans.[14]

Meat is usually fried between 200–230 °C (392–446 °F), and most oils will start to smoke before a temperature of 260ºC is reached, but there are at least two cooking oils (safflower oil and avocado oil) that have a higher smoke point than 260°C. Empty cookware can also exceed this temperature upon heating."

Chowhounders, are there really any better options than my old cast iron?

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