14 votes

How to Ruin a Cast Iron Pan

pretty useful, take your time!


http://youtu.be/lOYfAMVJWg4

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Cast Iron Care

Most good cast iron will crack before it will warp.

If you have some pans that are really coated with crust you can put them in a self-cleaning oven. It will burn off all the carbon and leave a shiny cast iron finish and you should re-season them immediately to keep them from rusting.

Live in Liberty
Tom Rankin

This Video is Bogus

The pan is NOT useless....

Although I've seen/used many a kitchen pot & pan that WAS warped;
There is a solution:
NOTE: This is only possible on a gas stove.
Step 1- Take a burner grate from a burner not being used.
Step 2- Place this upside-down on the burner grate being utilized.
Step 3- Cook.
The pan will be held stable by the additional upside-down grate, and will not rock.
Although I've noticed warping with "nickel-type pans", I've never encountered a cast iron with these symptoms....go figure.
WHEN CLEANING:
Keep the heat on the now-empty pan, pour a bit of "very hot" water in.
Wipe it out with a rag or towel after emptying it.
Use salt and a rag to remove any residues still clinging.
NEVER use soap or brillo....re-season with shortening or lard.

"Beyond the blackened skyline, beyond the smoky rain, dreams never turned to ashes up until.........
...Everything CHANGED !!

Or, you could put it in the freezer for awhile

and then throw it down on a hard surface.

I inherited

a big collection of cast iron from my mom.. griddles and muffin pans big skillets, little skillets and dutch ovens.. that big one she used for frying chicken and hush puppies, corn stick pans, ear of corn pans.. wedge pans.. and even a big cast iron Texas. All made in the good ol' USA and my favorite thing to cook in even with all the seasoning that has to be done~ My mom would put cold water in them after using it so it would be easy to clean and I don't ever remember one warping. I'm pretty sure there's a difference between the good old stuff and what you find new now.

Hey does anyone else have a thing called a toast-tite for making closed sandwiches?

Garnet
Daughter of 1776 American Revolutionists

I have a heavy grill pan with a

heavy grill lid that you heat first and then sit directly on your sandwich to press it down. http://ab.wsimgs.com/wsimgs/ab/images/dp/wcm/201344/0071/img...
A panini-maker it's called. Is that what you're talking about? I got it because the usual-type panini makers were all Teflon, which I won't use. The main grill pan is great. The lid is not really worth it in my opinion. You have to turn the sandwich over anyway to get it dark enough. So if you're just going to use the (expensive) lid as primarily a weight, you could use something heavy you already have! Well, maybe others have had better luck with it than me.

P.S. I'd do what I could to take all the pans with you. You won't be able to replace them with anything near as good.

When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.
~ John Muir

Toast-tight~

This is what they look like.

http://forums.egullet.org/topic/136845-a-celebration-of-the-...

This makes a great quick sandwich.. egg, cheese or just about anything you can fit into the pocket since the edges are sealed. We used to make them with cold beef or chicken stew. Rye or french bread with left over corned beef, carrots and potato. You can even make little fruit pies.

Here's another interesting link I found at the first one

http://www.firepies.com/irons.html#.UysZ2PmIB8E

Garnet
Daughter of 1776 American Revolutionists

Ha, ha. Yeah, I know what those are.

In fact, I almost mentioned it. I intended to until I couldn't find a picture to show you. (I tried googling "grill pan with swivel" and "grill pan with ball joint"... lol) I just figured that I must be recalling something wrong that I (thought I) knew of from our kitchen at this old country house I used to go to as a child. *That* is what I initially wanted and couldn't find, how I ended up buying what I did. Thanks, garnet. I'm definitely going to get one!

When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.
~ John Muir

nothing much better

than a grilled cheese toast tight with some tomato soup on a drizzly day like today =)

I was staring at a stack of cast iron this morning weighing the sentimental value of each and you're right about keeping them but realistically I'll have to be patient and pass a few off to good loving homes. I even have this big cast iron teapot my great- great- grandmother used on her wood stove. =)

Garnet
Daughter of 1776 American Revolutionists

I am so jealous of you

I suppose it's wrong to covet your neighbors pans....

lols

If you were close enough here in CA I'd load you up with a few. It's looking more and more like I'll be leaving this area and my ability to lug stuff across country back to TX will be somewhat limited.

Garnet
Daughter of 1776 American Revolutionists

You need lots of heat on a cast iron pan

for seasoning it. If my cast iron pans start to stick, I clean them well with soap and water or just heat some water in it on the stove. Then dry it out on the burner high heat. Once dry put some oil or lard in it, make it smoke for 1 minute or 2. Once it cools back down by itself, you have the best no stick pan ever. Throw out those garbage no stick pans and get cast iron. I use nothing but cast iron, on an electric stove. No warping ever.

I think his wife warped the pan when she hit him with it after he came home from a drunk.

Gold standard: because man can not be trusted to control his greed

I never use soap

I have a sturdy brush and use coarse salt, that's it.

I have and use a lot of cast iron, use it on my wood stove all the time..

If something happened to a pan and the salt didn't work, I'd use baking soda, steel wool, and if I had to, reseason.. my pans are better than teflon coated.

One of my favorite recipes is made in a 350 degree oven
Pineapple upside down cake.. I chop my pineapple (can of crushed pineapple works /if you use the can, drain the pineapple and reserve the juice) mix it with 1 cup brown sugar and half stick butter, little salt, put that in bottom of a PAM or greased 12" skillet.. cake is the oth 1/2 stick butter creamed with cup raw sugar, add two eggs, 2 cups flour.. add reserved juice to make a batter.. pour on pineapple.. cook 35 - 40 minutes.. when removing from oven immediately turn out to serving plate and wash pan in cold water with stiff brush.. immediately washing the pan is key to keeping the pans seasoning in good shape.

OMG, you have a wood stove?

Wow I would have guessed you cooked on one of those hallogen stoves. I used to have one 30 years ago and I really miss it. It takes a little practice on how to keep the oven at the correct temp, but once you master it nothing is better. I found out real fast that green wood will not generate enough heat for the cook stove.

My wife loves pineapple, I bet she would like your recipe.

Washing the cast iron pan right away is always best, but it seems around here it gets left for me to wash. Maybe it's because all those teflon pans my wife used to buy always disappeared. Most of the time I just use a paper towel to wipe out our cast iron pan after I am done.

Gold standard: because man can not be trusted to control his greed

It's because it's so heavy.. hot and heavy

Cast iron scares people because it's heavy.. but I love mine.. when I have a wood pile to burn, I fill up the dutch oven and bury it in the coals.. you can use bisquick coffee cake recipe for the pineapple upside down cake.. A boxed cake mix will fill a 12" skillet.. skillet cakes are great.. even corn bread.. especially with company because the pan keeps the cake warm. I like pineapple.. there's a donut shop makes apple and blueberry fritters that are really good.. I ask them when they are going to make pineapple.. that just sounds so good to me. I love dehydrated pineapple.. great sugar rush snack.

Too bad you don't live close to me

I have piles and piles of dry 2 year old wood, and lots more to cut. I have a grove that high winds knocked a lot of old trees down. I do have a wood boiler that I built myself, so it should all disappear within a few years. I remember my wife thought I was crazy for building it, but when we fire it up and heats this whole house she loves it.

This boiler sure ain't no wood stove, wood stoves are about the best when it's 20 below outside. That's when it's time to bake a lot of bread.

I think I am going to stop at the store and buy me a pineapple to try your recipe in the cast iron pan. I bet it will cook better because cast iron heats evenly.

Every time I see the name Ganger I going to think of woodstoves now, I think I am a little jealous.

Gold standard: because man can not be trusted to control his greed

That's cool

that you built a wood boiler. Very cool! Check this out

As for being jealous... Woodstoves, which are common in these parts, are interesting because there is a rythem to them that fluxuates between seasons and types of wood. When you are in the rythem, life is comfortable. When your off rythem, day light savings time, change of wood type (wet/green), unseasonal weather, your rythem can be put off and mess with your life.. too cold, too hot, tired.. lugging, chopping, sawing, stacking, kindling, maintaining the stove, ashes.. I'm kneeling to that stove several times a day.

Early one morning, seemed the middle of a really cold night, I got up to stoke the stove and I had a piece of pak that wasn't straight, had a curve and was about 1/8" too big, so I decided to give it a whack and get it in.. I whacked it, it went in, and I lost my balance, caught myself by putting the heal of my hand and right forearm on the stove. Nothing like the smell of burning human flesh.

I nursed the burn for four days (bandages are very expensive) and then went to see a nurse only to confirm there wasn't any infection (because I still have to keep that fire going). I healed well. Still, I have, and will probably always have as long as I have a wood stove, brandings on my right forearm where I've barely toched the edge of the stove when feeding it. A wood stove can make you old because it's a lot of work by comparison to pressing a button on a thermostat.

If you are going to make the pineapple upsidedown cake.. heat the cast iron pan, and then put in the sugar pineapple and butter, and pour cake batter over that.. then bake 35 - 40 unless you use a bisquick.. 25 mins.. when the cake is golden and cracks appear.. when you remove it from the oven immediatly plate it.

The pineapple will be sweet crispy jam like.. really good.

That video is really interesting

I am going to watch it again to see how they made it. One project I,ve been wanting to do is convert my tractor or truck to running on wood.

Sound like you'll be glad when summer comes, this time of year is always a tough time to get through.

On thing about hot surfaces they don't allow for mistakes, and glad to hear your all healed up from your burn.

There are always trade off when you decide on wood, they run a lot cheaper if you got access to wood. However they are a lot of work, your savings on electric/ gas is usually your pay off for using wood.

I was thinking of trying your recipe tonight but I forgot to pick up the pineapple. I like foods made from scratch, so I won't be using the bisquick. Thanks for the recipe, and info on making it. I let you know when I make it.

Gold standard: because man can not be trusted to control his greed

I was thinking

since his kiln was so small and produced wood gas.. it seems like it would be the right size for a tractor or farm truck. I saw a show where they built a "gasonator".. used a 55 gal drum, ran a ford

Climate change has made the summer sunnier.. otherwise it's pretty foggy here very rare to not need a fire at night.

I think the info is just plain wrong

Kind of like the cause and effect fallacy of increasing min wage makes everyone richer. Cause and effect are often not understood. I take my cast iron camping to cook on wood fires, High heat, oven cooking, it doesn't matter as long as you respect what a pan does. All my pans are flat, even the old ones I sand blasted the rust off of that came out of barns. It isn't the heating that usually causes metal to warp, but the cooling. Instead, do you heat your pan to near red and then pour a bunch of water inside?? Or even worse, pour sink water on them to cool em off? Some lessons of metal and physics should be taken in to account. People used to understand and respect equipment, that is why old stuff is in better shape. Super glad that cast iron is getting popular but people should know what they are talking about before making youtube movies.

Huh. Sand blasting. Yeah that would be perfect.

I knew a guy that would take a grinder to an old pan surface but it was obvoius all the casting pores were getting sealed over. Till now my method for ressurecting an old pan was wire brush the living crap out of it, saturate it with oven cleaner outdoors, hose that off, boil the thing to remove any oven cleaner reside, then soap and water then season and return to use. I think the right blast material would do better and save time. If I had a sand blaster that is.

There is nothing strange about having a bar of soap in your right pocket, it's just what's happening.

Maybe he just bought cheap thin pans.

According to lore, cast iron pans survive house fires (in usable condition). This after being heated intensely, then cooled quickly. Thick iron shouldn't warp under any but the most intense conditions.

Dude got ripped off - that's the problem here.

Don't feed the pandas. Ever.

.

Yeah, those do looks pretty thin. I have two lodges that are thick and very heavy.

Only way those are getting warped is if I put them in a kiln for an hour and then dropped in it ice water... maybe. lol

Lodge is the way to go, they

Lodge is the way to go, they are made in the USA as well which is cool. I have two pans, a grill and a Dutch oven and love them. The only thing I cook on Teflon is scrambled eggs but I want to find an alternative for that as soon as I can, maybe ceramic?

We all share this eternally evolving present moment- The past and future only exist as inconsequential mental fabrications.

.

If it sticks and burns really bad when you scramble eggs with cast iron you might need to re-season it. One thing I've found is cooking your eggs, putting them on your plate then putting some hot water in the pan and letting it sit while you eat will take 99% of it right off without any effort when you go to rinse it.

Those lodge pans are pretty much the only things I use anymore. For anything. Even pizza goes in it lol.

I do need to give mine a good

I do need to give mine a good seasoning. What process and oil do you use? I have not been able to really get it right recently.

We all share this eternally evolving present moment- The past and future only exist as inconsequential mental fabrications.

.

Every other time I use my lodge I just put it on med heat, take a napkin and scoop up about a quarter to a half a tbsp of vegetable oil and coat it. Let it sit for a couple min on the heat and then take another napkin and wipe up the excess. That's worked for me so far.


http://youtu.be/Gg6S6vWyPH8


http://youtu.be/46nRKacPWPs

I've overheated

a small cast iron skillet on am electric burner many times and nothing has happened to it yet. Maybe because it is a really small one? It doesn't make sense to me; why would the electric do that and not the gas? Plus, my larger cast iron skillets are soooo heavy..it would take a blast furnace to warp them. Just my expierence...