Thanks for the replies on this!
"If it's black in IR, it will also radiate more, which will reduce some of the advantage."
Yes, that is true, but it will be radiating at the temperature at, at most, boiling water temperature, while it would be receiving energy (potentially at least) from thermal spectrum radiation at a much higher temperature (shifted higher in frequency and in energy), so this would be a small down tweak to what is already, admittedly, a small effect to start with.
I too was thinking that probably the obvious first thing to do would be to boil water for a while. That would possibly accomplish the first stage. As for the final curing temp the options seem to be trying to use my oven or wing it and blast it with a torch. Both have have their potential disadvantages. I will try one of them and post back here in the next day or so. At the very least if the oven experiment is a disaster I can let you folks know not to try it.
I'm not sure if the paint will ever be "scratch proof", but I *am* definitely wondering if it will at least make a difference the durability.
I should explain that the origin of my wondering about this came a decade ago the first time I tried painting a Ti mug with stove paint. I have to admit that, at the time, the "payoff" for me was as much from a Jardine-like desire to wipe the "snow peak" logo from my mug as from a curiosity to see if it did in fact make a difference in the heat transfer. LOL Anyway, I didn't do any heat curing at all, and the first time I put it on my canister stove the paint "stuck" to the pot supports and "melted" a bit, and pealed away. Perhaps some others may have had similar experiences. Since the paint was supposed to be good to 1200 F I wondered at this. Later I found out you were supposed to carefully drive away the resinous material in the paint etc. by heat-curing the paint before the job was done. Also, Ti may not be the ideal backing material for paint.
The paint is supposed to even look "wet" when you heat it the first time until the other materials in the paint are driven off. If you heat it too much before the process is finished it is supposed to blister, which might explain my experiences with using non-heat-treated paint for the first time.
Oh, FYI, I am only using hardware store variety stove paint - Rustoleum matt black high temp paint good to 1200, about $6-8 for a large size spray can. The stuff people use on their barbecues. I assume this is what the vast majority of people use.