I was making my usual tomato sauce the other day which is one of my few dishes I consider to be un-improvable. I made a rookie mistake of not turning off the stove when I left the house. A couple hours later when I finally discovered my mistake the bottom layer had been reduced to charcoal but, mama mía, the paste left on top was incredible.
P.S. My stainless steel pot was fine. I soaked it and the burned shit simply dropped out like a big, black cookie. I made a similar bonehead maneuver back when I lived in Seattle only a month or so after I bought this particular pot. I thought that I would have to throw it away. I threw it in the sink to cool it down and the next morning when I turned the pot over the whole burned mess dropped out in one piece leaving the pot spotless. This is why I bothered to bring this pot with me when I moved to Spain.