Traditional Copper Modak Patra / Steamer Vessel
- Copper mining has been a critical part of India. Archaeological evidences depicts use of copper in India since Mohenjo-Daro and Harappa civilization and Indians were masters in metallurgy.
- Ayurvedic manuscripts explain the medicinal value of Copper and importance of using copper utensils in our daily lifestyle.
- Cultural heritage of coppersmiths in Maharashtra is as old as its tradition and culture. The period of Peshwas in 1730 AD was the golden era of Coppersmiths in Maharashtra.
- Making process starts with softening the copper in fire for making base, lid and plate.
- They are hammered and heated alternatively which is repeated three or four times, till it is beaten into a desired shape.
- They are fired and hammered to make the surface even and smooth.
- Finished product is dipped in tamarind water and then buffing is done.
- Later they are left under sunlight for a few hours.
- Finally, a piece of virgin high grade tin is touched to the blasting hot interior of the utensil to do kalai.
- The Copper Modak Patra can be used to steam Modak, kozhukattai, Ela ada, aluwadi, idiyappam, ammini kozhukattai, Patra / patrode, upma kozhukattai, steam vegetables, corn, chicken and many more.
- Traditionally in Maharashtra - the Modak parta are made of Copper only.
- Wash gently with soap before first use.
- Do not use steel - wire scrubs for cleaning as it could erode the tin coating faster. Use of mild soap and sponge for regular cleaning is advisable.
- Tin coating will erode with usage and its life depends on frequency of usage, cleaning agents used.
- Once a significant portion of the tin coating wears off and you see the Copper metal finish, you have to do the re-tinning before you start cooking in them.
- Use lime, tamarind with salt mixture to clean the outer surface to get the shine.
- Always post wash, wipe the surface dry immediately to prevent oxidisation of surface due to presence of water particles.
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