Cast Iron Cookware

Avatar for CMEvelyn
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-29-2012
Cast Iron Cookware
9
Thu, 02-21-2013 - 12:05pm

I used to have a cast iron frying pan that was pretty much indestructible. I don't know whatever happened to it, I think it got rusty. Anyway, I recently saw some cast iron cookware on sale and thought I'd give it a try. I bought a nonstick frying pan and a 6-quart casserole. I was especially looking forward to trying another bread recipe that called for cooking the bread in a cast iron pot and heating the pot in the oven for 30 minutes first. Turns out you can't heat the pot or the frying pan with nothing in it. You also can't heat them on the stovetop on anything higher than medium. I verified this with the company. I can remember searing steaks in a screaming hot iron frying pan. What happened? The frying pan does cook well on low heat, good enough to cook fish, and eggs slide right out, but no steak. The casserole can go in the oven up to 550 but only on medium on the stovetop. Is all cast iron cookware made today the same? I'm sure we used to heat the frying pan first before putting anything in it! I'm so disappointed.

Community Leader
Registered: 01-25-2000
Thu, 02-28-2013 - 6:28pm

I love my cast iron.  Heavy buggers too.  I have several fry pans and a couple of stew pots or what ever you call them.  My son has one that he uses all the time.    If You treat them right, they are nonstick for you.  Great for making cornbread in oven. Yum.

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Community Leader
Registered: 10-01-2002
Thu, 02-28-2013 - 1:24pm
I love all of my cast iron pans or dishes I even have a corn muffin or dog pan .. I would never throw them out...
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Community Leader
Registered: 02-27-1999
Mon, 02-25-2013 - 7:00pm

My mother in law would sometimes get rust on her cast iron, she didn't use it enough.  So she would grease them good and set them on a stump that her husband was gradually burning out, and leave the pans in the fire until the stump went out.  Novel, but it worked!


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Avatar for CMEvelyn
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-29-2012
Mon, 02-25-2013 - 3:03pm

Nice stuff!  I wish I'd read that rust wasn't a bad thing before I got rid of my old frying pan :(

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-22-2000
Sun, 02-24-2013 - 8:52pm

I have an old lodge 8 or 9 inch that used to be my mothers, I use it for fried potatoes, cornbread and steak.  When using it for cornbread I put it in the oven when I start preheating it for the bread.  As soon as I'm ready to bake I add a spoonful of bacon grease and then top that off with the batter, makes for a crispy crust.  I to keep it in my oven at all times and have been known to let my husband have it when I find it "soaking".  I plan to pass the pan when I myself pass.

PattyK

http://s14.photobucket.com/albums/a306/yttap/siggys/
Community Leader
Registered: 02-27-1999
Sat, 02-23-2013 - 3:05pm

Lodge 

http://www.lodgemfg.com/products

will be more than happy to equip your kitchen.  I ccok almost exclusively in cast iron, and I store mine in the oven, so that when I am baking or roasting, I am also keeping my cast iron in good shape.  I have pans that were my grandmother's, but also pans that I have bought recently (like my 18 inch skillet, OMG!!!)  I have dutch ovens, skillets in various sizes, my brother has the Lodge chicken fryer that I will steal when he's not looking ;-) 

It sounds like you got sucked into the mythical "nonstick" fake cast iron.  That is coated and in living color.  That stuff is crap...drill holes in it and plant herbs in it on your front porch.  The real stuff, that will still be cooking great meals in 2424, is black and it BECOMES nonstick when you USE it to cook.

The mistake people make with cast iron is washing it.  Never wash it!!!  Spray it out with really hot water, run a scrubber over it, but NEVER NEVER put soap on it!  Acid food like tomato sauce will create issues with your cast iron.  

On top of my cast iron collection, I have cast aluminum.  Same rules apply for use and maintenance,  I learned to cook with this stuff and I would not buy ANYTHING from a store now.  It is all too "gimmicky."  

that is cast aluminum, also known as "waterless cookware."  

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Avatar for CMEvelyn
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-29-2012
Fri, 02-22-2013 - 8:22pm

Can you still buy the old-fashioned real cast iron pans, or do I have to look for second-hand?

Avatar for emty_nstr
Community Leader
Registered: 05-25-1999
Fri, 02-22-2013 - 6:33pm

I have been buying from QVC from the start and have watched the pots and pans change over the years. But when they came out with lighter weight, non stick coated and painted on the outside, all I could think of is WHAT ARE THEY THINKING? I guess if you just want pretty pots they would be for you...I on the other hand am not a fancy cook. But my folks gave me a set of Wearever pans for my first anniversary, and I tossed the last one out a couple years ago....I had used them for about 45 years and the finish was gone and I thought they might not be safe to use anymore. Those pans had really gone through what no pan should have...

But my brother came out one time and brought moms cast iron covered chicken fryer. It was a mess. He asked me since it was mom's did I want it he couldn't cook in it without it sticking and it was just to much for him to deal with... I said sure. So I cleaned it and seasoned it like Wren said and have been using it since. And he told me that I must be magic and what can I say I let him think that. 

But I think the newer cast iron is mostly for cooking pretty, a real black cast iron pan can be put on a campfire and left there while cooking for a big crowd, which I don't do anymore but it still looks like it did when it was new I am sure even though I think it is older than I am. 

I like the non stick for eggs etc... and I buy a new one ever other year or so. Because the coating starts coming off. I thought I would try one of those newer green pans but not the infomercial ones. 


Community Leader
Registered: 10-01-2002
Fri, 02-22-2013 - 11:53am

Now this is my opinion  

I love cast iron  and I do bake and fry in it..
I think   that nowadays things are not made like long ago..

But that is my opinion..

  Maybe Kroni has a better thought with it..

I usually oil mine up:  season it   when I first use it..

The Boy Scouts use these type of  cookware  on hot coals ..

Well that is my 2 cents..  * maybe I should google it  before I posted but that is ok..  Its just my opinion.

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