The steam leaving a cooking pot is essentially water soluble vitamins and minerals (9 out of the 13 vitamins and minerals are water soluble), and in most cases with conventional cookware almost all of it is lost during the cooking process.
The heat from the pot is uniquely food-friendly — it first spreads out evenly then cooks the food to almost done before steam can build up. As a comparison, in metal/ceramic pots where food is steaming in just 5 minutes into cooking but the food itself is not even half cooked, with pure clay steam forms when food is about 75 -80% near completion.
When the food does start steaming, the special design of the pot & lid allow it to circulate inside and let food cook with its own steam pressure. The straight walls of the pot made in concentric circles, the inner flute on the lid and a cool underside of knob allow for steam to rise, get condensed and drop right back into the pot/pan. So in this case steam stays inside by this natural condensation process.
By now food is almost done cooking and if you see steam escape, you can turn the heat to low till fully done, if need be. Or in many cases turn the stove off.
Please note, lids might have a ‘wiggle’ or ‘rock’, this is something that forms naturally during firing. When we fire the pots, as temperature gets to over 900 to 1100 Degree Fahrenheit, molecular water escapes the clay body and sometimes lets this wiggle to form. We don’t prevent this from happening as a precautionary measure in case one forgets to turn stove off in time, steam can find a way out and prevent damage to your pot /pan. This natural rock on the lid acts as a safety measure in such cases. It may not be there on all lids, some lids can let steam out even without, nature chooses which ones do and don’t.
Regarding the functionality of the lids in the ‘Alternate line’. We check them to make sure the ‘miss-fit’ is not great enough to affect functioning and are mostly functional in just the same way as the regular line. And as mentioned earlier, steam escapes the pot only when the food is almost done cooking, so reduce heat to low so it can continue to condense naturally. Or turn the stove off, the heat inside is enough to cook the food to completion.
Tags: Steam locking, Steam management, alternate line, steam, issue with lid