Before using your culinary pottery for the first time, we recommend to soak your pottery and its cover overnight in cold water and then to air dry thoroughly.
Then rub it with a clove of garlic and let stand for at least 5 hours.
Before use, clean it by hand, preferably with liquid Marseille soap or a diluted commercial detergent. Once dry, your terracotta pottery is ready to use.
2 - To avoid thermal shocks
Glazed terracotta and earthenware, like any ceramic, are materials sensitive to thermal shocks and can be damaged irreparably. Here are some tips to avoid breakage.
1st tip: Not empty! Never heat or reheat a pottery utensil when it is empty. We recommend placing preparations or food inside, or at least a glass of water, before placing your dishes in the oven or on a cooking source.
2nd tip: Cold start Whatever the heat source, you should always start your cooking in a cold oven, or on a small fire with a heat diffuser. Covered pottery retains heat and loses very little energy. You can heat up slowly. The earth gently cooks the stewed preparations, giving them back their water. These remain soft and tasty. There is no point in raising the temperature sharply. If you adhere to this principle, you can simmer unattended for a long time. Finally, do not use your pottery for quick cooking (roasting meat, for example). It is not appropriate. Prefer utensils made of iron, cast iron, etc, instead.
3rd tip: Do not put on a cold surface after cooking Provide a tea towel, a cork or wooden trivet, and avoid placing it directly on a work surface. The temperature difference between very hot terracotta and a cold surface could create a shock causing cracking. Likewise, never pass from the oven to the refrigerator or vice versa. It would be fatal for your ceramic. Also, do not leave your terracotta or earthenware dish next to a cooking point. The proximity of a very hot temperature can crack the ceramic.
3 - How to clean your pottery
Even if you are using the dishwasher, you must handle your dishes avoiding any shocks. For hand cleaning, avoid metal pads and abrasive sponges. It is better to use natural detergents, such as Marseille soap products. Always rinse thoroughly, especially for utensils that have an unglazed part. You must allow your ceramic to dry completely before storing it. Place the lid separately, or staggered to prevent airtight closing while your dishes are resting. This will help prevent mold, as the terracotta retains moisture.
Thanks to these recommendations, you will rediscover the true flavor of your recipe in this natural earth, and the pleasure of sharing it at dinner.