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Cast Iron Cooking

Discussion in 'Food Talk' started by ColoradoTJ, Oct 11, 2020.

  1. Oct 11, 2020 at 6:45 PM
    #1
    ColoradoTJ

    ColoradoTJ [OP] O'Keefe Music Foundation Staff Member

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    I looked around and seen post that people cooked meals in with cast iron, but not a dedicated thread.

    I have stainless Cuisinart, Calphalon Teflon coated, and minimal cast iron for kitchen cookware. Definitely looking to replace some cookware with more cast iron.

    6B10C036-B4A2-49F5-97DE-6F5169F2AC5C.jpg

    Lately I have been noticing high end cooking shows, restaurants, and people like us using cast iron more. I wondered if this is just a fad coming back or is there something to using cast iron?

    To my surprise, there are plenty of benefits to cooking with cast iron (if used correctly).

    1) Adding some iron to ones diet through cooking is never a bad thing.
    2) Non toxic unlike other types of cookware.
    3) Naturally non stick when seasoned correctly and a snap to clean. Now this really kicked my butt for a long time, and I had the answer at the touch of a search engine. Talk about this later.
    4) Long lasting, low cost/maintenance.

    5) Cast Iron holds heat well and great for searing/sauté duties.



    With advantages, there’s always some disadvantages.

    1) Need to use caution when cooking acidic foods, and will break down the “seasoning.” Never leave these kinds of foods in cast iron for very long.

    2) Cast Iron is susceptible to rust. A properly seasoned pot/pan is not a big problem. If rust forms, it can be removed and re-seasoned.

    3) Need to be careful when using soap for cleaning. A mild soap is ok (I do it), and may require a re-season.


    So what is “seasoning” cast iron? How is it done?

    1) From what I have read and used, the vegetable oil and baking method is preferred. Heat your oven up to 350*. Rub a thin layer of vegetable oil on the inside and out, place inside oven for 1 hour. Pull cast iron out, let cool to room temp. May need to repeat 2 more times.

    2) For a quick “re-season”, wipe vegetable oil on inside of pan only, heat up until oil lightly starts to smoke, remove from heat and let cool to room temp.

    Cleaning

    I have read some just wipe out cast iron and re-oil. Others use a small amount of soap, rinse out and re-oil. I have also seen people heat up the cast iron a bit, use Kosher salt. I was surprise at how well that works.


    What brand and style cast iron do you have? Maybe toss in some of grandmas recipes.

    This is what I have, and plan to add a Dutch oven, 12” pan, another 10” pan to separate meat use. Other suggestions are always welcome.
    09819894-0E5A-4AD4-8413-B5F077B79A21.jpg
     
  2. Oct 11, 2020 at 6:51 PM
    #2
    Juanjoolio007

    Juanjoolio007 New Member

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    The small little griddle is awesome for making sandwiches and then finishing in the oven. Also quesadillas.

    If you get a Dutch oven don’t get the ones with little legs on it...unless you want that for cooking over/in a fire like for camping. It’s a PITA to cook with on an oven rack/grill rack.
     
  3. Oct 11, 2020 at 6:52 PM
    #3
    BravoDeltaRomeo

    BravoDeltaRomeo Old Man Blue

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    I use Lodge & Wagner for my cooking and to throw on the BBQ.

    My wife uses Staub & La Creuset enameled cast iron Dutch ovens, but usually finds the cast iron pans too heavy for every day use.

    For our Pan frying, we use DeBuyer Carbon Steel pans.

    I am not a fan of non stick and coated pans. Much prefer the old school ways and seasoning of the above pots and pans. Easy to clean, if they rust they can be restored, retain heat well, can use any utensil in them.
     
  4. Oct 11, 2020 at 6:53 PM
    #4
    Outbound

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    Great idea for a thread. Your seasoning looks awesome.

    Regarding cleaning, I use Dawn dish soap to clean mine without issue. The tradition of not using soap dates back to when soap had lye in it which would strip the seasoning. Most modern day soaps don't have lye, so they're fine to use.

    After washing, I dry immediately with a towel and then heat the pan up on the stove to finish the drying process and once the pan is hot I coat it with Crisco shortening, wipe off the excess and heat for another minute or two.

    I have a Lodge skillet, griddle, ridged grill pan and No 10 Dutch Oven. I also have a 12" Camp Chef skillet which is surprisingly good. I recently got a no name 12" skillet with lid that I need to reseason.

    This mac'n'cheese recipe has been a hit in our family.

    http://theculinaryfanatic.com/recipes/jeff-rogers-ultimate-five-cheese-macaroni-and-cheese/
     
  5. Oct 11, 2020 at 6:56 PM
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    BravoDeltaRomeo

    BravoDeltaRomeo Old Man Blue

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    @Outbound

    I use a small about of dishsoap on mine too if needed. Usually I add a bit of water, throw it back on the stove to loosen tidbits and then it just rinses off all the debris

    Towel dry, wipe with oil and back in the cupboard.

    When my wife doesn't question what kooky thing I'm doing for my forums, I'll post a pic of my cookware
     
  6. Oct 11, 2020 at 6:59 PM
    #6
    Johnsonman

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    I grew up with grandma using cast iron to cook 3 times a day. Never saw her 'season' them, just used daily, cleaned right away and re-use when ready. Easy peasy....
     
  7. Oct 11, 2020 at 6:59 PM
    #7
    FirstGenVol

    FirstGenVol Allergic to Darkness....

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    I would like to use a cast iron more but I've tried every trick I can find and the pan just won't get seasoned like it should. Food sticks to it badly. My mom has a cast iron pan that's seasoned wonderfully and makes delicious food.
     
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  8. Oct 11, 2020 at 7:03 PM
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    ColoradoTJ

    ColoradoTJ [OP] O'Keefe Music Foundation Staff Member

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    That was always my problem. Try the oven process I used in my post. Works like a champ.
     
  9. Oct 11, 2020 at 7:03 PM
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    BravoDeltaRomeo

    BravoDeltaRomeo Old Man Blue

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    Use them to cook ground beef and bacon for a few months and they'll be good to go. Rinse them after use with warm water, towel dry, lightly wipe with oil.
     
  10. Oct 11, 2020 at 7:08 PM
    #10
    TelemarkTumalo

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    I have a cast iron skillet and a dutch oven. Agree with above. They are tough and cook evenly. I always make my corn bread in the 10" skillet. And, the dutch oven works great for pot roast, stews and chili.

    I wash mine just like any other pan, then wipe with oil and pop in the oven and heat for a few minutes. They have stayed seasoned perfectly for 15+ years.
     
  11. Oct 11, 2020 at 7:09 PM
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    BravoDeltaRomeo

    BravoDeltaRomeo Old Man Blue

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  12. Oct 11, 2020 at 7:12 PM
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    MS22

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    My cast iron always stays on the stove because it gets used soo much. My favorite is heating that thing up to do a finish sear on steaks :drool: 20201011_200648.jpg
     
  13. Oct 11, 2020 at 7:12 PM
    #13
    Kanobi13

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  14. Oct 11, 2020 at 7:14 PM
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    Outbound

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    Used my dutch oven for the macroni, 10" skillet for the cornbread and the potato salad was done in my 12" skillet.

    [​IMG]
     
  15. Oct 11, 2020 at 7:14 PM
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    Kanobi13

    Kanobi13 New Member

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    You can find some nice pans at yard sales. If it has country of origin on it post 1960.
     
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  16. Oct 11, 2020 at 7:15 PM
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    Kanobi13

    Kanobi13 New Member

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    What time was dinner!!!
     
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  17. Oct 11, 2020 at 7:17 PM
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    Kanobi13

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  18. Oct 11, 2020 at 7:18 PM
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    Outbound

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    6pm last night. :rofl: There's plenty of leftovers if you want to make the trip. :D
     
  19. Oct 11, 2020 at 7:19 PM
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    Kanobi13

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    Cast iron cooking is fun just be careful if you are using coals on fire gets hot fast
     
  20. Oct 11, 2020 at 7:27 PM
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    Tundyfundy

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    We love our cast iron pans. Got a good deal on them at costco.
    Get a set of these to make cleaning a breeze. Easily scrapes out burnt or stubborn food from the pans. I don’t use soap, i scrapes them out and then blast with steaming hot water until clean. I dry by puttin on the burner on low heat until they are dry and leave them there for the next use. https://www.lodgecastiron.com/produ...MIoc_Rj4Cu7AIVcz6tBh34KwdvEAQYASABEgJmA_D_BwE
     
  21. Oct 11, 2020 at 7:37 PM
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    MS22

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    Holy Sheetz 3lbs of cheese almost 2 sticks of butter?! Looks like a winner in this household :hungry:
     
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  22. Oct 11, 2020 at 7:42 PM
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    MEWaters

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    Finex because they season with organic flax oil.
    All other cookware except salad master titanium and the likes are toxic for you. Even the expensive clay and enamel dutch ovens, etx. They all leach. Your SS, looking at you too.
    All we use to cook are the finex dutch oven, skillets.
    The iron gained from cooking through cast iron is not all beneficial, treated like a heavy metal in a way.
    Regardless we will never use any of the cookware you see in stores or TV
     
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  23. Oct 11, 2020 at 7:43 PM
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    Outbound

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    LOL. I should have mentioned that I modified the recipe quite a bit. I use about a little over 1 lbs of cheese total and less than a 1/4 cup of butter. That recipe as written would never fit in my dutch oven and is a heart attack waiting to happen. :D

    I like a mix of old cheddar, mozarella and montery jack. I shred a bit of parmesan over the top.
     
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  24. Oct 11, 2020 at 7:53 PM
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    TILLY

    TILLY Gently Used Member

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    Is there a consensus on the best oil to season your pan with? I've heard you can use any oil, and I've also heard some oils can spoil if you don't use your pan regularly. I use this and for some reason it says canola free.

    IMG_1072.jpg
     
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  25. Oct 11, 2020 at 7:58 PM
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    BravoDeltaRomeo

    BravoDeltaRomeo Old Man Blue

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    I've used Flax Oil with success in my carbon steel pans.

    My current method (when I don't season them just by use) is:. Potato peels, vegetable oil and coarse salt. Fry them up until black, dump them out, wipe with paper towel, let cool completely and keep repeating until you have a seasoning in it that will allow you to cook normal foods in it.

    Tip....do it on the BBQ side burner outside, it gets smokey.
     
  26. Oct 11, 2020 at 8:08 PM
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    Outbound

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    I use Crisco vegetable shortening now. I've used flaxseed oil as well, and it worked but it's much more expensive.
     
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  27. Oct 11, 2020 at 8:15 PM
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    BravoDeltaRomeo

    BravoDeltaRomeo Old Man Blue

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    Sometimes I save my bacon grease and keep it in the fridge for seasoning pans.....and to make stovetop popcorn with. :thumbsup:
     
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  28. Oct 11, 2020 at 8:17 PM
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    JLS in WA

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    I’ve found it works even better if you do it at 450 degrees for an hour or so.
     
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  29. Oct 11, 2020 at 8:17 PM
    #29
    ColoradoTJ

    ColoradoTJ [OP] O'Keefe Music Foundation Staff Member

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    Great recommendation on the Dutch oven.

    For camping I have a camp chef for cooking and a camper (for now).
     
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  30. Oct 11, 2020 at 8:20 PM
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    JLS in WA

    JLS in WA New Member

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    We use cast iron exclusively. It’s even better with a gas range, particularly for searing steaks. We have several skillets, a Dutch oven, and a stove top griddle.

    I love cast iron for cooking because of the even heat and easy cleanup. We use the blue scotch brite pads with a little soap if necessary. Usually just hot water.

    I usually just dry after washing, and then do a light seasoning every week or two if needed. Usually the other cooks in the family don’t use enough oil and scrape the hell out of the pan while cooking.
     
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