Wednesday, September 8, 2010
Some Cast Iron Rules
Even though cast iron is tough, like with all types of cookware, there are some hard and fast rules that should always be followed when caring for your prized possessions. There are only a few, and I will list them here. They aren't hard, and you will find that cast iron is so wonderful that this little bit of care won't bother you a bit.
Here's a cast iron rule: Once the pan is seasoned (or if it comes pre-seasoned), never use soap when cleaning the pan. Hot water and maybe a plastic (not metal), scrubby should do the trick, and with some things such as biscuits or cornbread, you shouldn't need to wash the pan at all. Just wipe with a paper towel.
Here's another cast iron rule: Never, ever wash cast iron in the dishwater. Along with removing the seasoning, it can ruin the finish and cause you a lot more work. If you have to wash it, hand wash with no soap.
Another cast iron rule: After using the pan, always coat the inside of the pan lightly with vegetable oil or mineral oil before storing. You don't want rust to develop, do you?
Yet another cast iron rule: Always, always dry your piece immediately after washing. Never let it air dry. (This is another reason it can't go in a dishwasher). Dry it with a dry towel, not a damp one. Ensure that your pan is absolutely dry, then rub a little oil on it, then store.
And one more cast iron rule: Make sure you have a lot of good, heavy trivets and potholders. Cast iron is very heavy, especially with food in it, and is unforgiving when it sits on a cabinet or when you pull it out of the oven with a thin potholder. You can purchase a super-potholder just for cast iron, or double up if you need to.
See, these are pretty easy rules to follow! If I think of more, I'll post them later.