Your Cast Iron Cookware Maintenance
When it comes to cooking, you must include a set of cast iron cookware in your kitchen. The are the one of the best heat conductors and are known for heating food evenly. They are also known for allowing one to cook fat free as they are virtually resistant to sticking if they are taken care of. They also do not require any special utensils as they are resistant to scratching. One of the best things about them, however, is that they will last forever if they are properly maintained.
While cast iron cookware is not very expensive, if you want to save money, you will more than likely be able to find them at garage sales or on an online auction. When you see one that is rusted or looking pretty shabby and dirty, do not worry as they are relatively easy to clean up. Depending upon the thickness of the pans, it is almost impossible to completely destroy one. Many people often will find them for almost nothing at garage sales, clean them up and resell for more money. If you’ve purchased old cast iron cookware, you can clean it up easily with steel wool. Simply scour the pan until the rust is gone. Then, wash the pan thoroughly in dish soap and get ready to season.
When you season your cast iron cookware, you are basically filling the metal with grease. The metal has pores and you are cooking the grease into these which will leave you with a smooth and nonstick finish. Seasoning the pans is very easy. Simply rub a thin coat of lard, oil, or shortening on the pan, although some people prefer bacon grease. You’ll then want to put the pan upside down in a 300 degree oven for approximately one hour. When the time is up, let the pan cool. You can do this procedure over to make sure you have a strong seasoning, however, once or twice usually does the job.
After you’ve seasoned your cast iron cookware and you’ve used it to cook with, you’ll want to make sure it is taken care of in between. You’ll want to use regular dish soap to wash it, however, do not place the pan in the dishwater itself. After rinsing the pan, thoroughly dry it using paper towels and set it on a hot burner to insure it is dry. You’ll then want to rub oil on it and place it in a hot oven for a few moments. After it cools, remove excess oil with another paper towel and your pans are good to go for the next time you cook.
The next time you go out to a garage sale and see a rusty pan in the corner, don’t hesitate to buy it if it is cast iron cookware. Once they are seasoned and you properly maintain them, you will never want to go bath to any other type of cookware. You’ll find your cast iron cookware to be your best friend in the kitchen.