Don’t Be Intimidated By Cast Iron

Don’t Be Intimidated By Cast Iron

Your grandmother probably grew up cooking with cast iron, but if fell out of favor with the introduction of new materials. Now, it has become popular to use cast iron in the kitchen again.  More and more cooks are discovering just have versatile cast iron can be for cooking and baking.

Cuisinel Cast Iron Skillets

Cooking with cast iron skillets can help you create one of the most satisfying meals you will ever taste. It is surprisingly easy to use, it is amazingly durable and a well seasoned cast iron skillet can last for many, many years.  It goes from stove top to oven with no problem and bakers have known for years that cast iron is great for baking bread.

Cast Iron Scares A Lot Of People

Many people are afraid of using cast iron, it’s an unknown product to them.  It’s not a non-stick pan and that instantly seems wrong to them.   A cast iron skillet isn’t designed to be pretty, it’s designed to be functional and this can put some people off as well.  This is a shame, because once you become comfortable cooking and baking with cast iron, you will wonder why it took you so long to discover it.  Your home kitchen should have a few cast iron skillets and pans.

Seasoned Cast Iron Skillets With GripsTwo functional aspects of cast iron can intimidate some people.  The first is that you need to season a cast iron skillet or pan before using it.  If you don’t season it, you will have a miserable time cleaning it properly.  Which leads to the second issue that scares people, cleaning cast iron.

Season Your Cast Iron Skillet At Once

Seasoning a skillet is a simple process.  Set your oven to 200 degrees and put a baking sheet on the lower rack.  Take a rag or paper towel and dab some cooking oil on it.  Rub the oil all over the skillet, then set the skillet upside down on the baking sheet in your oven.  Leave in the oven for about 60 minutes, then wipe clean with a rag.  You know have a seasoned cast iron pan.  You will want to repeat this process occasionally, depending on how often you use your skillet.

Cleaning isn’t difficult, but in this day of non-stick surfaces it is more labor intensive.  Don’t ever put your cast iron skillet in the dishwasher.  Also, don’t soak it in hot, soapy water.  If you do, you will need to re-season it.  To clean, wipe out the skillet with warm water, avoiding soap if possible.  Wiping out the pan with paper towels before using water is a great idea.  Because cast iron isn’t porous, it won’t pick up food flavors such as bacon.

Those old cowboys knew what they were doing when they took cast iron skillets with them out west.  Check out a skillet and try some of your favorite recipes.  You will be amazed at how good this type of pan is for cooking and baking.