Hervé This - Shiny That: How to make tarnished silverware look shiny again
January 29th, 2008

Don’t tell me, you haven’t heard of Hervé This? The man who decodes all the chemical and physical processes taking place during cooking or baking, from beating egg white to browning meat. Isn’t everybody talking Maillard these days? I keep one of his books (a paperback version with dog-eared pages) in my tote, so I can entertain myself while taking the tram, waiting at the doctors’ or simply when I have a spare minute. Welcome side-effect: My culinary knowledge is about to grow with every page I turn, at least in theory. I’m far from reaching the final pages, but getting ready to put theory into practice.

Silverware

Take his chapter about kitchenware. Continuous exposure to air is very likely to tarnish the precious silverware you inherited from your beloved grandma, who you never caught cursing about endless hours of polishing it for special occasions? Up until now I used a rather expensive bottle of silver polish to get rid of any unwanted patina, but Hervé This’ recommendation is as simple as it is effective. I remembered the box of heavily tarnished silver and silver-plated cutlery pieces I bought for about €3 (~$4.40) at a recent flea market – it’s been waiting for a special treatment!

Here is how to make your silverware look shiny and flawless

You will need a somewhat larger bowl, ordinary aluminum foil, plain salt and some boiling water. That’s it! Ahh, and some dish cloth (or soft sponge) as well as a soft cloth for toweling the cutlery after treatment – don’t use your favorite cloth here, as it will get stained.

Line the bowl with aluminum foil (it doesn’t matter which side is on top), add one layer of cutlery (it’s important that each piece has contact to the aluminum foil) and sprinkle with a tablespoon of ordinary salt.

Silverware

Now fill the bowl with enough boiling water to completely cover the silverware. You may soon notice a whiff of rotten eggs, a sulfur stench, which is the result of the chemical reactions taking place in your bowl.

Silverware

Let chemistry do its job and set the bowl aside for a couple of minutes, even up to some hours. I completely forgot about my last bowl, so the silverware enjoyed a longer stay of about three hours, didn’t make much of a difference though.

Remove the silver pieces (they will still look tarnished!), rinse thoroughly under water while gently rubbing off the unwanted patina with a dish cloth or soft sponge. Finally dry any remaining water marks and polish with a soft cloth. Has your silverware ever looked so shiny?

Silverware

 

Comments

Jan 29th,
2008

Jan 29th,
2008

Jan 29th,
2008

Emily

Jan 29th,
2008

Jan 29th,
2008

Jan 29th,
2008

Jan 29th,
2008

mydz

Jan 29th,
2008

Jan 29th,
2008

Katja

Jan 31st,
2008

Jan 31st,
2008

Feb 1st,
2008

Maya

Feb 5th,
2008

Feb 6th,
2008

Feb 6th,
2008

Feb 8th,
2008

Chloe Foo

Feb 15th,
2008

Feb 17th,
2008

ejm

Feb 18th,
2008

Feb 19th,
2008

Cátia Campos

Feb 20th,
2008

Sandrine

Apr 1st,
2008

Alexandra

Apr 11th,
2008

B

Sep 7th,
2008

Val

Feb 9th,
2010

Leave a comment

Due to high spam influx we are currently optimizing our platform and have closed the comment area for older posts.

In the meantime, if you want to comment on the above article you can send your feedback via comments [AT] deliciousdays [DOT] com and we will add it rightaway.

Sorry for the inconvenience.