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Tuesday, May 22

DEAR CAST IRON PAN


Disclaimer: I was not paid to write this post, but just wanted to share this in case some of you also experienced the same frustrations that I had with cast iron. 



Dear cast iron pan,

You use to really scare me. You were super heavy, rusted easily and left black specks all over my food. I seasoned you over and over again, but food still stuck to you. You frustrated me so much that I quickly ended our relationship and put you away to never be seen again. For a while, Neoflam and I became great friends. I loved how light he was, his ceramic-based Ecolon non-stick coating and his super good looks.  He was really great in every way. 

Until last month...

While I was making honey buttercream, I turned on the wrong burner and accidentally melted a plastic spatula on top of him which quickly led to his demise...

I had just purchased him too...='(


Unwilling to spend another $30 and being that this was not the first pan I've ruined, I decided to give you another chance.  This time I researched more carefully on how to use you and how to take care of you.  

And now...

Now I'm your biggest fan! :) I totally don't know how I cooked without you all these years! I will never again have to worry about sending you to the trash can... plus I hear you just get better with age!



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Hi friends! I know I'm late on jumping on the cast iron bandwagon, but I'm so glad I finally did. I bought my first pre-seasoned Lodge pan 5 years ago and was extremely frustrated when I saw black specks coming off onto my scrambled eggs. I researched about it online and found out that it was actually normal and safe to eat. But that just didn't seem "normal" to me.

I ended up putting it away until recently. After spending a little more time researching, it turned out that others solved the problem by scrubbing their pans bare (with a steel scrubber and soap) and then re-seasoning them again themselves.

Well I tried it and guess what? It worked out beautifully! No more black flecks and my eggs slid right off! Fried rice tasted so much better and pancakes came out perfect every time!

How's the maintenance? Well after every use, I immediately wash it in hot water with a soft sponge and a TINY drop of dish soap. I sometimes use coarse salt for the tougher stains. (Never soak the pan in water!) Then I dry it thoroughly with a paper towel and then put it back on the stove and heat it for about 3 minutes on medium heat. Once the pan is completely dry and the pores are open, I turn off the heat and then VERY thinly coat the inside of the pan with a 1/4 tsp of grapeseed oil (or any regular vegetable oil) on a paper towel.

I know that may sound like a lot of work, but it's really not that bad once you get the hang of it. And if you're still not convinced, here's some more reasons why cast iron's a great choice:

Pros:
Inexpensive
Offers a chemical free non-stick surface (if seasoned properly)
Conducts heat evenly
Can go from the stove to the oven
Increases iron consumption
Indestructible

Cons: 
Heavy


For more information, check out the links below:
video about seasoning and washing your pan

Do any of you already own a cast iron pan or are thinking about it? Please feel free to share any thoughts or tips! :)

4 comments:

  1. I'm with you: absolute fan of cast iron, but so not a fan of the lodge pre-seasoning process. Way back when I worked in a specialty kitchen retail, we strongly disliked the preseasoned stuff b/c big flakes would come off and get into everything. Definitely not a strong selling feature. If you can find the unseasoned stuff (usually cheaper) I recommend that. Or haunt local garage sales/thrift stores.

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  2. I love my cast iron pan, but only use it for certain things. I had no idea you could season it to make it non stick though, thanks for the suggestions

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  3. I love the 'idea' of using my cast iron pan, but inevitably I neglect it. I usually end up using soap in it because it has stuck on food (a no-no) and then I put it away damp (also a no-no) where it develops tiny rust spots. I'm not sure I'm responsible enough for its upkeep ;)

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  4. What a great post. I don't have a cast iron pan but now that I read your post...I want one. Sounds like I could count it as a work out, with the heavy lifting too!

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