La Chamba Cookware FAQs

About Chamba   |   How Chamba is Made   |   Chamba FAQs

Can Chamba be used over an open flame?

Chamba can be used on the stovetop, oven, microwave and even open flame. To avoid thermal shock, avoid sudden changes of temperature; so don’t take Chamba from the oven and set it on a cold counter, for example.

How are the dimensions measured that appear on the website?

All Chamba measurements are given in Length, Width, Height sequence. We measure the length and width from outside edge to outside edge (not including the handles) and height from the bottom of the piece to the top of the rim (not including the handles or the lid). Because the pieces are handmade, often by different artisans, the dimensions of the pieces will vary.

Why must Chamba be seasoned?

Chamba is a bit porous when first made. Seasoning seals the clay and is necessary prior to use. The surface will continue to improve over time, so we recommend that you use your Chamba several times before cooking things like eggs or fish that are prone to sticking.

How do I season a Chamba comal or plate?

There is no need to season a Chamba comal or plate—only vessels that will hold liquids like soup pots and casseroles.

Why do you recommend using heat diffusers with Chamba on all stoves except gas stoves?

Chamba can withstand high heat, but not the intense heat that comes from an electric coil that stays in contact with the Chamba over a long period of time. With gas stoves the flame moves and spreads its heat over a broader area of the Chamba.

Will Chamba break if it is dropped on the floor?

Yes.

My cover doesn't fit snugly on the pot. What can be done?

Sometimes there are small gaps between the cover and the pot. When cooking food where a tight seal is required, you can try wrapping a kitchen towel around the lid to prevent steam from escaping. Sometimes a better fit can be found by turning the lid and finding the “sweet spot.” You may want to mark that place with whit-out or nail polish so you can easily find it.

What happens if I wash my Chamba in the dishwasher?

It will probably develop a mottled appearance or actually degrade the clay. (Although one customer told me he’d been washing his pots in a dishwasher for three years without a problem—we don’t recommend it.)

I've got some food stuck on the bottom of a Chamba pot. How can I remove it?

Usually a brief soak (not overnight) in warm soapy water and a soft, non-abrasive scrubber or a nylon scraper will do the trick. If not, try boiling some water in your pot.

There's a tiny pit in the surface of my Chamba. What is it?

Usually, it’s a piece of mica that is found naturally in Chamba clay and is what gives Chamba the strength to withstand the demands of cooking. Often the little piece of mica falls out during or after firing, leaving a small pit.

My pot used to be black on the bottom, now it is an orange color. Why?

This is normal. Over time the direct heat from the stove re-oxidizes the bottom of your pot, revealing the orange clay slip underneath. Hairline cracks may appear as well, but they are superficial and won’t affect the performance of the pot.

Can Chamba be used on a ceramic stovetop?

Many customers have used Chamba successfully on a ceramic stove top, but it is also a good idea to ask the stove’s manufacturer. You will need a heat diffuser that sits flat, so either the simmer pad or the Bella copper are suitable. If selecting a Bella, you will only need a 6” or 8”, depending on the pot. We recommend that you use only moderate heat when cooking with the diffusers. You can see diffusers and other accessories here.