Title:
Splatter guard
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The splatter guard is a shield used directly on a lip of a cookware. The guard is a rectangular sheet of aluminum having a top edge, a bottom edge and two side edges. Strips of aluminum are disposed at the bottom edge of the guard to tie the guard to handles on cookware. A crease is disposed horizontally across the sheet being a distance from the bottom edge. The crease is the portion of the guard that contacts the cookware. Specifically the crease on the guard is manipulated to fit the lip of the cookware. By resting on the lip, the guard does not encumber the opening of the cookware. The guard leaves a portion of the lip uncovered to provide an entryway to food items disposed within the cookware.



Inventors:
Lombardo, Concetta (West Orange, NJ, US)
Casiero, Angela (Cedar Knolls, NJ, US)
Application Number:
10/912073
Publication Date:
02/09/2006
Filing Date:
08/06/2004
Primary Class:
International Classes:
B65D6/28
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:



Primary Examiner:
HICKS, ROBERT J
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Richard C. Litman (112 S. West Street, Alexandria, VA, 22314, US)
Claims:
We claim:

1. A splatter guard, comprising: a rectangular sheet having a top edge, a bottom edge and two side edges; and at least one tie disposed on the sheet; wherein the sheet is disposed on a lip of a cookware and the tie is fixed to a handle on the cookware to secure the guard on the cookware.

2. The splatter guard according to claim 1, further comprising a crease disposed a distance from the bottom edge of the sheet.

3. The guard according to claim 2, wherein the crease is defined by gathered material for increasing the durability of the crease when molding the crease along the lip of the cookware.

4. The guard according to claim 2, wherein the crease is made of a heavy grade material for increasing the durability of the crease when molding the crease along the lip of the cookware.

5. The guard according to claim 1, wherein the tie is attached to the guard near the bottom edge of the sheet.

6. The guard according to claim 1, wherein the tie is attached to the guard near the bottom edge of the sheet, the tie is inset a distance from one of the two side edges of the sheet.

7. The guard according to claim 1, wherein the sheet and the tie is made of disposable aluminum.

8. The guard according to claim 1, further comprising a second tie disposed attached to the guard near the bottom edge of the sheet.

9. The guard according to claim 8, wherein the ties are inset a distance from the side edges of the sheet.

10. The guard according to claim 9, wherein the sheet and the ties are made of aluminum.

11. The guard according claim 1, wherein the sheet is at least nineteen inches long.

12. The guard according claim 1, wherein the sheet is about forty inches long.

13. The guard according claim 8, wherein the tie is at least six inches long.

14. The guard according claim 8, wherein the tie is about ten inches long.

15. The guard according claim 8, wherein the tie is at least one quarter of an inch wide.

16. The guard according claim 8, wherein the tie is about an inch wide.

17. The guard according claim 1, wherein the sheet is at least about eight inches in height.

18. The guard according claim 1, wherein the sheet is at about ten inches in height.

19. A splatter guard, comprising: a rectangular sheet having a top edge, a bottom edge and two side edges; and a crease disposed a distance from the bottom edge of the sheet; wherein the crease on the sheet is molded to conform to a lip on a cookware.

20. The splatter guard according to claim 19, further comprising at least one tie disposed on the sheet.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to splatter shields, and more specifically to shields that rest on outer edges of cookware without encumbering the opening of the cookware.

2. Description of the Related Art

Frying or simmering foods on a stovetop can be a messy process even for an experienced cook. Many cooks have tried to contain splatters by placing lids over the opening of cookware. However, using lids may be impractical through out the entire cooking process since cooking involves turning or stirring food items. Also it may be impractical to use lids while cooking because the lid may tremble as steam escapes. Splatter shields have been developed to allow one to fry or simmer foods without a lid. Many of these shields completely obstruct the opening of the cookware requiring the cook to lift the shield in order to flip or stir the food item. Other shields rest on the stovetop forming a shelter around the cookware but blocking the cook's access and view to other items on the stove. A splatter shield is desired that rests on the cookware without obstructing the opening of the cookware and allows the user to access food items disposed within the pan while being used.

Splatter shields having a flat and circle shaped screen with a handle extending from the screen are shown in U.S. Design Pat. No. 302,637, issued to Hiscott et al. on Aug. 8, 1989 (an ornamental design for a splatter screen); U.S. Pat. No. 3,807,596, issued to Baker on Apr. 30, 1974 (utensil having a dual aluminum planar screen); and U.S. Pat. No. 6,056,146, issued to Varakian et al. on May 2, 2000 (releasably retainable splatter screen).

Other splatter shields are disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 4,422,441, issued to Schoepe on Dec. 27, 1983 (an accordion pleated, U-shaped shield); and Japanese Patent No. 6,176,830, published on Apr. 19, 1986 (oil shield cover for gas table.

None of the above inventions and patents, taken either singly or in combination, is seen to describe the instant invention as claimed. Thus a splatter guard solving the aforementioned problems is desired.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The splatter guard is a shield for use directly on cookware. Specifically, the guard is molded to rest on a lip of the cookware. The guard is made from malleable material that conforms to the lip on the cookware having any shape, circumference or thickness. The guard rests on the lip and extends up, vertically to increase the height over which splatters or splashes must travel before landing on the stovetop.

The guard is rectangular in shape having a top edge, a bottom edge and two side edges. A crease is disposed horizontally, a distance from the bottom edge. The crease is the area on the guard that is configured to the shape of the lip on the cookware. Long narrow strips of aluminum may be disposed on the guard to secure the guard to handles on the cookware. Preferably the guard is made of a disposable yet heavy-duty aluminum that can be discarded once cooking is complete.

The guard is placed on the cookware before or after the food items are disposed within the cookware. The guard rests along most of the circumference of the lip leaving a small area on the lip uncovered. The uncovered area provides an entryway through which access can be had to food items disposed in the cookware. With there being access to the foods through the entryway, the cook can continue to cook without having to remove items that may be obstructing the opening of the cookware.

It is an aspect of the invention to provide improved elements and arrangements thereof for the purposes described which is inexpensive, dependable and fully effective in accomplishing its intended purposes.

These and other aspects of the present invention will become readily apparent upon further review of the following specification and drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a splatter guard according to the present invention disposed on a pot having two handles.

FIG. 2 is a section view of the splatter guard according to the present invention drawn along lines 2-2 of FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is a plan view of the splatter guard according to the present invention.

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of a splatter guard according to the present invention disposed on a pan having a single handle.

Similar reference characters denote corresponding features consistently throughout the attached drawings.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

The present invention is a splatter guard, designated as 10 in the figures. As shown in FIG. 1, the guard 10 is designed for use directly on a lip L of cookware C, such as a pot, to catch most airborne splatters. The guard 10 is a vertically shield that extends up from the lip L of the cookware C. The guard 10 is preferably disposed on the lip L so a section of the lip L is left uncovered.

Referring now to FIG. 3, the guard 10 is a rectangular sheet having a top edge 12, a bottom edge 14 and two side edges 16. A horizontal crease 18 is defined near the bottom edge 14 with ties 20 being disposed on the crease 18 or elsewhere near the bottom edge 14 of the guard 10. The guard 10 possesses two ties 20, but may possess more than two ties, one tie or no ties. The ties 20 are used to wrap around handles H to secure the guard 10 in place on the cookware C once the guard 10 is positioned on the lip L.

The guard 10 may be made in any size and shape. For example, the guard 10 may be anywhere between about nineteen and about forty inches long and between about eight to about ten inches high. Guards 10 being shorter in length would leave a portion of the lip L uncovered, while guards 10 having longer lengths could cover and rest on the entire_circumference of the lip L. The ties 20 may be between about six and ten inches long and about one quarter of an inch to about an inch wide.

The guard 10 is made of any malleable yet disposable material such as aluminum. The aluminum may be a heavy-duty aluminum used to form the entire guard 10, or portions of the guard 10 may be made to possess the heavy-duty aluminum. For instance, the crease 18 is defined by being made of heavier weight aluminum even if the rest of the guard 10 is of lighter weight aluminum to provide extra strength to the crease 18. Alternatively, the crease 18 may be made of gathered material to provide added strength to the crease 18 of the guard 10.

Referring now to FIGS. 2 and 3, the crease 18 is the area on the guard 10 that is molded to conform to the shape, size and thickness of the lip L. The crease 18 is snaked over the lip L so that the bottom edge 14 of the guard 10 rests along the inside area on the wall of the cookware C and the top edge 12 is situated to lie a distance above and generally over the lip L, see FIG. 2. By folding the guard 10 in this manner a reservoir is created adjacent and outside the lip L to catch the splatters as they drip down the guard 10. However, the guard 10 may be disposed on the lip L of the cookware in any manner and should not be limited to the approach described above. For instance, the bottom edge 14 of the guard 10 could be placed against the outside area on the wall of the cookware C and still serve to prevent splatters or spills from soiling a stovetop or counter.

As mentioned above, the guard 10 may be made in various lengths to cover all or some of the circumference of the lip L. When the guard 10 is of a length where a section of the lip L is left uncovered, the user is provided with an entryway. The entryway allows unhindered access to the opening of the cookware C allowing the user to stir or turn over food items while cooking. Here the guard 10 covers about ¾ of the circumference of the lip L. The placement of the guard 10 on the lip L of the cookware C frees up the opening of the cookware C and allows food items to simmer and bubble without obstructions as evident when a lid or any other type of shield is used.

The guard 10 may be used on any cookware C such as the pot or a pan P, see FIG. 4. The guard 10 is shown in FIG. 4 disposed on a rim R of the pan P. The guard 10 is folded over the rim R in the same preferred manner as described with the cookware C in FIGS. 1 and 2 whereby a reservoir is created near the rim R of the pan P. Here, however, with pan P the ties 20 must stretch from the bottom edge 18 of the guard 10 to wrap around a single handle bar B. The ties 20 on the guard 10 are therefore versatile in being able to wrap around the single handle bar B of a pan P or two handles H of the pot or other cookware C.

It is to be understood that the present invention is not limited to the embodiments described above, but encompasses any and all embodiments within the scope of the following claims.