Cast Iron Care
There’s a reason everyone loves cast iron. It gets hot + stays hot, it conducts heat evenly for excellent browning, + it makes for easy transfers from stovetop to oven to tabletop. A well seasoned cast iron will be your best friend for life + (hopefully) it will even meet your grandchildren. If you needed a sign to try out cast iron cookware: this is it.
WHY SHOULD I SEASON MY NEW CAST IRON?
Seasoning your cast iron is a process of creating a layer of oil that bonds to the metal + hardens over time as it’s heated, making a non-stick surface that extends the life of your cookware. This also prevents you from having to scrub stuck food off your cookware + protects your cast iron from potential rust formation. Our favorite benefit of seasoning is the extra flavor it adds to dishes. If you need to caramelize onions or sear a steak, cast iron is your best friend.
OKAY, SO HOW DO I DO IT?
First, scrub well with warm soapy water. You should only use soap the first time you wash your cast iron. Dry thoroughly. Next, spread a thin layer of vegetable shortening, lard, or bacon grease over the surface (we wouldn’t recommend vegetable oil for this). Heat your oven to 375 degrees + place your cast iron upside down on a middle rack. Bake for 1 hour, then let cool completely in the oven. If you love your cast iron, do this regularly + it will love you back.
HOW DO I BRING A RUSTED CAST IRON PAN BACK TO LIFE?
Head’s up: This is a simple process, but it will be a labor of love. You’ll need some steel wool, a scrubbing brush, + some water to get started. Begin by cleaning off as much rust as possible with steel wool, which doubles as a free arm workout. Follow up with warm water and a scrubbing brush to get rid of remaining residue, then dry your pan thoroughly with a soft cloth or paper towels.
WHAT’S THE BEST OIL TO USE FOR SEASONING?
We love to use Netherton Foundry’s Cast Iron Oil, made from flax grown in the UK, but any oil with a high smoke point will do the trick. Avoid using butter, margarine, or coconut oil, since they won’t give your cast iron the long-term seasoning it needs.