Learning to be a Cast Iron cooking pioneer!!!

The cast iron skillet lay buried in my pots and pans cupboard for 3 years. Dirty, dusty and worn, I took it out one day and decided to see what all the fuss was about.  

After asking, researching and reading, I spent one day cleaning and seasoning it!  So easy really.  Give it one good scouring, put a coat of vegetable shortening or oil on it, and bake it on 450 degrees for one hour.  Turn off the stove, let it sit another hour [http://www.lodgemfg.com/use-care-seasoned-cast-iron.asp#3]  I did this several times throughout the day, gave it a few good layers.

The next day I took it for it's first test run.  I baked chicken in it.  I was impressed!  It didn't stick, it didn't burn, it browned beautifully and was moist!  And best of all, the skillet cleaned up in no time, some rinses under hot water, a wipe out with a hot water towel [no soap].  Dryed and a coat of veggie oil.

Cast Iron!  Better than any non stick skillet I have ever used or owned!  I will never turn back!!   I have become a cast iron junkie!  Upon further reading I was even more impressed to learn that if you keep it seasoned and taken care of, the can last 100 years or more!  What a great investment really.  It will certainly last my lifetime and I can pass them onto my children!


I don't even know how I came to own the first skillet.  I may have bought it at a second hand shop.  But I'm so glad I pulled it out that wonderful day!


Since then I cook most everything in it.  Eggs have never been so easy, stir fry, taco meat, sausage gravy.  Then another thing happened.  My mom said I have 3 more cast iron pieces you can have!  WHAT???  Cast iron is not "cheap" initially [at least to me anyway!]


So I acquired a wonderful griddle, another skilled and an enamel coated grill!
The griddle made awesome french toast and the grill browned up our steaks in the oven beautifully!  


And thanks to a gift card, I also was able to purchase a cast iron dutch oven!!  I'll be using it tomorrow for the first time for Hungarian goulash! 


So now I have a nice set that I look forward to using over and over, and hopefully, slowly adding to it!  Just a few more pieces that look interesting ;)


The only thing I wish is that you could make tomato based sauces.  But knowing that I can use them for about everything else, I can live with using a regular sauce pan every now and again :)


I'm also looking forward to making our first "deep dish" pizza sometime this week in the skillets!  I can't believe how very versatile they are!  


Now I just need to fulfill my fantasy of camping and cooking over an open fire with them!  Okay, I'm a dork, I've always admitted it!


Please feel free to share your cast iron stories, recipes, website referrals and love! :)


Here are some great sites I've been referring too for information and recipes!


http://www.eatingwell.com/recipes_menus/collections/cast_iron_recipes

http://lodgemfg.com/

http://www.recipesfromscratch.com/dutch

Here's the beginning of my wonderful collection!!  2 skillets, 1 dutch oven, 1 griddle, 1 enamel coated grill.

 

Comments

  1. My mom and dad always used cast iron skillets to cook with and used aluminum or stainless steel for the tomato based dishes. I gave you your first one and the other three!! I wanted to pass them on to you becasue you really love to cook, just like my dad and mom and your grandma Kathleen! Love you, Mom.

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  2. ahhhh okay, I couldn't remember how I came by it since it had been so long! :) You got me addicted! lol

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