In this review were are going to check out a cookware set from Italy – the Bialetti 8-Piece Aeternum Set. This is a modestly priced non-stick cookware set, and looks to be a good buy. Is the performance all it claims to be? Keep reading to find out more.
Bialetti is a big name in Italy, and has been producing cookware for well over 50 years. They were one of the first companies to adopt non stick coatings in the 80s, and only recently made the move to the USA market. Their first big introduction to the USA market has been their line of Aeternum cookware. These can be bought in single items, otherwise you can by the entire 8 piece set. In this review we are going to be looking at the 8 piece set to see how well it performs.
The set consists of a 8″ saute pan, a bigger 10.25″ pan, a 2 quart saucepan, a 2 1/2 quart saucepan and a 5 1/2 quart large saucepan. The saucepans all come with lids. The exterior of the pots and pans are a deep red color, and the interior is a shiny white. The contrast between the two colors really makes the set stand out, and the designers have done a really good job at making a modern and unique set of cookware. The handles and top of the lids are also red, and these use a soft touch material. The handles claim to be ergonomic, and they are certainly very comfortable and easy to use. There are holes on the end of the handles, so if you need to hang them up this won’t be an issue.
The coating used on this set is a nano ceramic coating. This is a new type of ceramic coating designed in recent years, and is slowly beginning to become more common on cookware sets. The good thing about this type of coating is that it is entirely PFOA and PTFE free so there are no safety worries at all. This kind of coating still needs to prove itself in the long run as it has only been on the market for a few years, but for now it looks quite promising. Unlike some of the other popular cookware sets such as the Stonedine one, this set doesn’t provide completely oil/butter free cooking. You must use a little oil or butter when you cook otherwise your food could get stuck on.
The set itself is made out of heavy gauge aluminum, so it can be used on a variety of cookware surfaces including gas, electric and ceramic. Please note that you cannot use this set with a induction stove as the base is not magnetized. There are some bits of info that we should mention about this cookware. It is not dishwasher safe, as this type of washing is a bit too abrasive. You should stick to cold water and a sponge, with a bit of dishwashing liquid if there is some stubborn food that is stuck on. In most cases a wipe with a kitchen towel will be enough to get it clean, but if you need to use water then make sure that the cookware has cooled down properly before applying the water. This is fairly common advice with most sets of ceramic cookware. When it comes to cooking utensils, you should never use metal ones with the Bialetti cookware set. Plastic, wood or high temperature silicone are what you should use as these will not cause any damage to the coating.
We should also mention that this set is not oven safe, which is a bit of a downside.
Now we will discuss how well this set worked when put to the test! Our standard test begins by frying an egg to get an idea of the non stick performance and to the test the heat distribution. We added a teaspoon of butter, then cracked our egg into the pan. Within a minute or two the egg was looking quite promising, and sure enough it was sliding all over the pan with no sign of sticking. In fact it was so slippery that it was quite difficult to actually turn over since we couldn’t get a grasp on it.
The saucepan passed the frying egg test with flying colors, so we decided to stick with the eggs and do a omelet test. You often see this test done on tv, where the host demonstrates how great the nonstick coating is by blowing the omelet off the pan. Without adding any additional butter we poured in our mix and started work on the omelet. It cooked beautifully on both sides, and sure enough we were able to blow it out straight onto the plate.
Next up we decided to do something a bit thicker and stickier. We got the 2 1/2 quart saucepan and attempted to make some toffee. Anyone who has made toffee before will know that it can create a sticky mess, and be a nightmare to clean. After heating up the pot, we added our butter, then the sugar, corn syrup and water. Stirring continuously, we brought it to the boil and afterwards poured it into the prepared cookie sheet. Most of the mixture came out, with only a small bit of residue remaining behind. Once the cookware had cooled down, we tried to wipe away the remaining residue with a wet paper towel. Around 90% of the remaining residue came out quite easily, and the rest came out by using a sponge and some water. This is very impressive for such a well price cookware set.
We have tested the Bialetti ceramic cookware set with a variety of dishes over the past 7 weeks, and all of them have come out very nicely. The nonstick coating performs as advertised, and it is nice and easy to clean when you are finished with this. The coating still looks as good as new, with no sign of scratches or chips after about 2 1/2 months of use. The Italian designed cookware looks really fantastic, and the retail price of $149 is very reasonable. The warranty is 5 years which is quite respectable.
- Looks fantastic
- Price is very affordable
- Soft ergonomic handles
- Nonstick coating performs as advertised
- Easy to clean
- 5 year warranty
- Not oven safe
- Doesn’t work on induction stoves
This is good quality cookware set which is well priced. There are a few minor disadvantages such as it not being oven friendly, but at the price you can’t expect too much from it. The cooking performance was very solid, and it passed our tests with ease. There seem to be a mixed bag of reviews on Amazon about how good it is, but we certainly never had any issues with the coating peeling or scratching. We suspect there was a faulty batch somewhere down the line, but remember it is backed by a 5 year warranty if you order it and run into that particular problem. However if those user reviews scare you off, then you might want to look into something with a better user reviews such as the Stonedine set.