Do you cook with non-stick pans? They are great for flipping a pancake or sliding an egg onto a plate. But that non-stick finish demands good care. Hot spots, excessive heat, and scratching the surface can damage the non-stick coating, which can cause it to crack or flake off.

The pan needs something to cook, so the manufacturers suggest not using a shot of aerosol spray oil or cooking "dry' in it, like toasting rice. A thin coat of oil, fat, or liquid added after the pan has heated for a couple of minutes provides a good cooking method. The temperature is important with low to medium-low heat considered the best for non-stick cookware. Using metal utensils, can scratch the surface, so use wood or plastic.

For clean up, non-tsick should not go in the dishwasher because high heat and harsh detergents will corrode and dry out the surface. Rather than the dishwasher, wash in warm, soapy water and avoid using abrasive cleaners, hard brushes, or metallic scrub brushes which can scratch the pan.

This is Judy Barbe, helping you live best.