If you do stuff, stuff gets done.......

If you do stuff, stuff gets done.......

Friday, January 13, 2012

Cast Iron ???

lunch for Gavin and Elizabeth and myself today
grilled cheese  on homemade bread toasted in a cast iron skillet
we also had clementines and a sliced apple

I chatted with another blogger,  Belle at The Bon Bon Club, about cast iron.  She showed some before and after pictures of cast iron that really needed TLC.  They looked amazing after she cleaned and seasoned them.  
It reminded me that I have several pieces of cast iron but almost never use them.  I do a lot of cooking in big non-stick skillets that need replaced about every year or so - not a thrifty thing at all.  
Anyway,  she encouraged me to use them.  


So,  I thought what have I got to lose?  I opened the drawer under the stove and found more cast iron pieces than I remembered.  I knew I had 2 cornbread stick pans and 2 skillets,  actually I have 3 skillets!  


I got out one of them  and was pleased to see it was seasoned a lot better than I remembered.  I've cooked in it 2 days in row now and plan to keep working with it.  

So,  do you have cast iron?
What do you cook in yours and what do you not cook in it?
This old dog wants to learn some new tricks.  

13 comments:

  1. I use my cast iron skillets a lot. I especially like them for pan frying things. The main thing I don't cook in them is anything acidic, like tomato sauce, it kind of picks up a metalic taste. If you start by frying things in it for a while at first, every time you fry it enhances the seasoning, until you get that nice non-stick finish. I do try to avoid soap when I am cleaning it. that removes some of the seasoning.

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    1. thank you Vicki, that is good advice about the acid things - I will keep cooking them in my stainless steel

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  2. Enjoyed your post! Those sandwiches in the skillet look yummy. :) Yes, we cook with cast iron most of the time - several skillets and griddles. We cook pretty much anything in/on them. Just careful to wash, and then season with Crisco. Hope you enjoy cooking with them!

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    1. Hi Rhonda, I enjoy your blogs and posts so much too. I did use Crisco to season them the first time.
      and I hope I start to enjoy cast iron too, I just never have but it seems like the smart thing to do.

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  3. I just used my new Cast Iron Skillet to make Pork Chops and honestly the best pork chops I have ever eaten.
    My little Mema always used one when we were kids. I am a believer!!

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    1. my freezer is half full of a pig my stepson raised so I have plenty of pork chops, I will have to try cast iron cooking them soon.

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  4. I got a whole set of cast iron at an estate sale over 20 years ago and have been hooked ever since. I agree that tomatoes in cast iron are a bad idea, and I also have trouble with melted cheese because it's hard to clean it up without removing the seasoning. But I don't know how anybody fries eggs without one.

    Also, have you read the book Slow Death By Rubber Duck? There's a chapter in there about Teflon and trust me, once you read it you'll never touch another non-stick pan!

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    1. No, I have never heard of that book - there sure are lots of things out there we need to careful of, it is hard to keep up to date on all of them.

      That cheese in the picture that was even bubbled on the skillet, it came over easy as could be. So I guess that means this skillet is seasoned pretty good.

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  5. I use cast iron ~ skillets, griddles, bread pans and a dutch oven. I cook everything in them. When I clean my pieces, I wait for them to cool down some and fill with hot tap water. Then I let the water come to a boil on the stove, while scraping with a wooden spoon. All the food particles will easily lift off. I rinse with hot water and wipe it out.

    If I have to season any, I use bacon grease. I know that Lodge says to use vegetable shortening, but everyone I have talked to about it, says to use the bacon grease. My grandmothers both used bacon grease and I have 2 of their skillets and have never had to season either one. They are the 2 I use all the time.

    Enjoy getting reacquainted with them. They cook like nothing else.

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    1. Lori, I remember my mom used to save bacon grease in a little can with a strainer on top, maybe I will look into that.
      thank you for the encouragement!

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    2. Bacon grease is definitely better than shortening just for one simple reason: Taste!! The iron is porous, so it soaks the grease up into it. When you cook with it, it expands again, and some of that grease gets released back into the food. Bacon grease makes everything taste better (imho). I also think it is less sticky than the vegetable products, but that just could be my bias there. I used crisco to initially help out those old pans, because they were desperate, and I had a lot of crisco.

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  6. Rhonda, I love cooking with cast iron, but, about sevenyears ago when I bought a stove with a top like yours, I had to stop using cast iron. That manual told me I could not use cast iron on the glass top. I don't see anywhere in the manual for the stove that I currently have, where it says anything about cast iron. I forgot and used it on my first stove and it discolored the top. Just check your manual to see what it says, just to be safe.
    Hugs, Cindy

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  7. Our library has several books about cooking with cast iron, so I'm going to try some recipes from them. I "rescued" three pans from a thrift store and have to clean and season them. Also picked up a Lodge cast iron dutch oven at wallyworld.
    Several folks have told me that the older cast iron cookware that you find at farm auctions and in antique stores in better than anything produced today. But I'm not sure about that, so don't quote me.
    As for the nonstick cookware, reports of recent studies have indicated the cookware has the potential to cause some nasty health issues especially when used over the long term.
    So I decided to head back to using stainless steel, cast iron, glass and porcelain to cook and bake with.
    Thanks for bringing up this topic. It'll help get the word out to lots of folks that nonstick with its chemical and peeling veneer shouldn't be a tool of choice in our kitchens.

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I love to hear from you - thanks for telling me what you think.

Jeff and Rhonda

Jeff and Rhonda