Many will argue that aluminum or Teflon is better but, the investment in Cleaning and Seasoning Cast Iron will make your food taste better and last a lifetime.
Cleaning and Seasoning Cast Iron Video
Seasoning is a process used to protect and preserve cast iron from rusting, and will provide a non-stick surface when cooking, sautéing, baking and searing. Seasoning is a three-stage process beginning with cleaning, heating and ending with maintaining.
Benefits of Cooking with Cast Iron
I love cooking with cast iron pots and skillets. There are so many benefits with cooking with cast iron including enriching foods with Iron.
Cast Iron is a great space saver as well, you not only can cook, sauté, sear with cast iron but, you can bake as well. Also, cast iron last a lifetime and when well-seasoned is better than Teflon.
Cooking over an open fire or high heat Cast Iron will last over any other cookware. Cast Iron can be used outdoor and indoors.
Cast Iron can be used a lifetime and for generations. Pasting down this heirloom of cast iron is a sweet way to preserve past generations.
Cooking with cast iron makes food taste better and very healthy.
I found two cast iron skillets at my local Salvation Army and paid only a few dollars for each, be on the lookout at any secondhand store you may be surprised. This beautiful skillets make not only preparing food healthier but, will last a lifetime with proper care.
The reason I think cast iron is usually sold at second hand stores is because people do not know how to clean or season them.
Cast Iron can be used a lifetime and for generations.
Why Cast Iron?
I know a lot of people will argue if nonstick pots and pans are harmful or not. Some will argue Teflon is very dangerous and releases a chemical called perfluorooctanoic acid which is labels a carcinogen when your nonstick pots and pans reach a high temperature, Yikes!
I personally do not like to take chances and do not purchase pots and pans and wait for debate over toxicity of Teflon or other questionable cookware, no thanks!
Beloved by chefs, I love and use cast-iron, it heats evenly, and iron will leach into your food which is better than Teflon and the safety and health of my family. When cast iron is preheating, I am not worried that toxins are releasing into my environment.
Cleaning and Seasoning Cast Iron Steps
Today, I am going to tell you step-by-step on how to clean and season your cast iron that is fool proof!
Here is what you need:
- cast iron skillet
- sponge or scrub brush
- coarse sea salt
- oil of your choice -I used Coconut Oil but avocado or olive oil works nicely.
- paper towel or old dish cloth
- thick oven mitts
If you buy your cast iron new or used there is never directions on how to season, maintain nor clean your cookware.
First, with your sponge or scrub brush, brush to remove any rust, debris, caked on food, etc. this is important when you do purchase second hand.
Next, place cast iron skillet in warm water and clean with sponge or brush. Dry your cast skillet completely. Water must not be present on any of your cast iron that is what will cause it to rust and destroy the non-stick surface.
Now take coarse salt and sprinkle skillet if there is any tough, caked on food. Use a sponge or brush to massage coarse salt into cast iron skillet.
Warm oven to four and fifty degrees. Take a paper towel and massage a thin layer of coconut oil or oil of choice into skillet. Rub the oil on the inside, outside, and handle.
Place cast iron skillet in oven for one hour, remove from oven using oven mitts and clean extra oil with paper towel and buff. Repeat this step if necessary but no more than three times.
*Often repeating this step is with an older, beat-up cast-iron skillet.
Finally, never clean cast iron with soap or use metal because it will break down the coating. Dry cast iron completely, never let air dry. After cleaning rub a thin layer of oil on cast iron and Store cast iron away from moisture.
What is the Best Oil to Season Your Cast Iron Skillet
There are many cooking oils on the market to use to season your cast iron skillet. An oil with a high smoke temperature is best.
Coconut oil is my oil or choice but, avocado and olive oil have a high smoke point and works great.
Always after cleaning and drying your cast iron apply a thin layer of oil inside and on the outside of the cast iron.
Tips on Cooking and Using Cast Iron
- Good Cast Iron is Coated in Oil; rub on oil after cleaning in drying.
- Never use any dish soap on cast iron it breaks down the coating you season the skillet with. If you use dish soap by accident you will have to re-season your cast iron skillet.
- Use a stiff brush or steel wool to remove stubborn food on your cast iron.
- Never leave your cast iron soaking in water, it will rust.
- Invest in a good pair of heavy-duty potholders. Cast Iron is extremely hot, and the traditional potholders just are not sufficient.
- Any cooktop is fine to use cast iron such as gas, open flame or glass.
- The more you use your cast iron the more season and non-stick the skillet will become.
- When cooking or baking with your cast iron always preheat the skillet.
- Over the years, if you cast iron rust just repeat the process of seasoning your cast iron.
- Use any utensil when cooking with cast iron metal, silicone or wood.
What to Cook or Bake in Cast Iron
The possibility is endless with using cast iron to cook or bake. I cook and bake everything in my cast iron skillet.