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Thread: Lodge Cast Iron Skillet - about ready to give it up!

  1. #51
    TVWBB 1-Star Olympian Rich Dahl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dustin Dorsey View Post
    We've had a calphalon non stick skillet for about 4 years that still running pretty strong, but we never use anything metal in it. It's still hard to beat cast iron for some things, such is when you wanna take something from the burner into the oven. When you really need non-stick, you can't beat non-stick. I've gotten my cast-iron kinda non-stick, but nothing like people claim. Although carbon steel pans are kind of trendy now, but you season them like cast iron. Still has some of the same problems.
    I agree Dustin, there's a place for non stick and cast iron, we have both. I wouldn't want to cook on cast iron exclusively. But things like bacon, chops, smash burgers Brussel sprouts and other things take on a different flavor profile with cast iron.
    Most of the magic pans out there are just junk. Get a good quality non stick set and a couple of CI pans and you should be good to go.

    I was just gifted a 1937 Griswold 12 " CI Pan, can't wait to clean it up and get it seasoned.
    Last edited by Rich Dahl; 09-04-2017 at 11:47 AM.
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  2. #52
    TVWBB Wizard Rusty James's Avatar
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    One other benefit of using a cast iron skillet is iron content which is absorbed by the cooked food.
    Last edited by Rusty James; 09-14-2017 at 11:12 AM.
    18.5", 18.5", 14.5", & Royal Oak Lump / Briquettes, Blue Genesis Silver C

  3. #53
    TVWBB Olympian JimK's Avatar
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    We got a couple ceramic pans from Williams-Sonoma a while back. Really like them for non-stick. I love my CI, but sometimes it isn't the perfect tool for the job. Made some great western omelettes over the weekend that slid right onto the plate.

    https://www.williams-sonoma.com/prod...=PRODUCTSEARCH
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  4. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rusty James View Post
    One other benefit of using a cast iron skillet is iron content which is absorbed from the eaten food.
    Once a pan is well seasoned, the polymerized oil/carbon coating forms a barrier between the food being cooked and the iron. If one were to cook food, especially food with an abundance of moisture or acidity, in an unseasoned pan, however, there would be a transfer of iron to the food. Cooking in an unseasoned cast iron pan is not normally done, though.

  5. #55
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    I love my CI pans, but the only one my wife will touch is the grill/panini pan. Otherwise, she sticks (no pun intended) with teflon. Having gone through a lot of cookware in my life, I've found that the cheap Winco-brand non-stick skillets (available at most restaurant supply shops) have the best balance of performance and durability. Even with a few nicks and scratches, we can't get eggs to stick in any of the three we have.
    22.5" WSM , Jumbo Joe , SS Performer , PartyQ and lots of

  6. #56
    TVWBB Pro RichPB (richlife)'s Avatar
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    Wow! For those of us who use and love cast iron, this is a fascinating thread. Sorry the OP has such time-wasting difficulties, but I do think he should have contacted Lodge much earlier.

    I have three CI cooking vessels, a low-rim 9" oblong skillet, a 10" pan and a new dutch oven that I really have not used (need to remedy that). I "seasoned" them all (and in some case re-seasoned), but that really amounts to "prepped for seasoning". I cook everything from bacon to fried potatoes to frittatas/hash browns and even sear steaks. Since these items are all for use in/on my grill/side burner, the temps are typically HOT. My seasoning oil of choice is refined canola oil or EVOO. (Check this chart for smoke temps of various oils: https://jonbarron.org/diet-and-nutri...t-smoke-points .) I have never seen the gunk described by the OP. For cleaning, I use a plastic scrub pad with a little detergent and hot water (125*). If there is any build up, I may use a copper scrub pad. Any re-seasoning (scrub hard, dry, wipe well with oil, heat for 10 minutes IN the grill) occurs only if the buildup becomes uneven and might be once in 3 - 5 years or longer. After normal washing and drying, I add a little (1/2 tsp or so) oil again and wipe it all over the pan before storing away.

    One of my favorite pans belongs to my 94 yr old MIL. It is 6", way more than 60 years old, has a smooth glossy seasoning after all that time, does not stick or display any other noxious behavior and is her "go to" pan. After cooking, she dumps it in the hot dishwater (no dishwasher -- hand washes only in water so hot I can't touch it) with the other dishes, cleans it with her wash cloth and sticks it on the drying rack. I have no idea why she can get away with this, but I covet that pan! She has promised me the pan "when" since no one else wants it. I can only hope it actually gets passed on to me as she lives with most of the family about 3 hours away. Frankly, I would cherish it and remember her with true love and hero worship every time I used it. (She is and has for a long time been my "hero".)

    Do a YouTube search for Ci seasoning/re-seasoning. Follow the cleaning instructions of some of the old time hill folk and forget the oven cleaner, etc. Their instructions will take you back to clean, original-looking grey cast iron so that you can season properly (again).
    And NEVER smooth/polish your CI. Just my opinion.

    PS: Flax-seed oil! Holy CRAP! See that chart above (as well as other choice thoughts you can't see in my head!).
    Last edited by RichPB (richlife); 09-14-2017 at 10:44 AM.
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  7. #57
    TVWBB Wizard Rusty James's Avatar
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    A few years ago, our cast iron pans were so gunked up, I placed them in an outdoor fire pit and burnt off the crud (on the outside of the pans) and let them gradually cool. One pan cracked, unfortunately, and I had to ditch it.

    I did this after dark, and you could see a red glow from the cast iron.

    Thanks for the link, Rich. I see avocado oil is the best high-heat oil on the list.
    Last edited by Rusty James; 09-14-2017 at 11:25 AM.
    18.5", 18.5", 14.5", & Royal Oak Lump / Briquettes, Blue Genesis Silver C

  8. #58
    TVWBB Pro RichPB (richlife)'s Avatar
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    I also found that CI can betempermental with high heat. My side burner (and I expect all Weber side burners) really only has a HIGH to VERY HIGh range. Works well for roasting poblanos, but too hot for frying. I have a CI coaster (hot plate) that I would turn upside down on the eye and under my pan to reduce the HIGH to "fry manageable" temp. But on first use, it cracked across the outer band. Still usable, but not so pretty.

    I suspect this is as much a flaw in the CI as a problem with high heat since none of my pans has shown a similar issue. But hot temps are probably the mechanism.
    UNC Tar Heel '69, '75 -- now Woodworker, grandfather
    Weber Genesis EP-330, Weber Smoky Mountain 18.5, Weber Q-1200

  9. #59
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    I've got probably 30 pieces of CI, some of it can be traced to both my great grandmothers. The older stuff is still quite usable, but I find it more fragile than the pieces from the early part of the 20th century.

    I've not had problems like the original poster of this thread. One thing I do not do is spend any time seasoning the pan (either after a heavy clean, new purchase, etc) but rather I just put the pan into use. It will eventually reach the point where it seems to be seasoned as it should. But, I don't ever expect it to be as slick as a Teflon coated pan.

    More than a few years ago I bumped into these, and prefer using them over and above CI.

    de Buyer Mineral B Element Iron Frypan

    https://www.debuyer.com/en

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_c...&v=n4o_HbZvCMM

    Still use my CI though. Have a dedicated set of 4 or 5 pieces to use over charcoal too.

    LBGE MoJoe Schwenker Lodge Cajun SantaMaria BigJohn ~No gas grills in sight~

  10. #60
    TVWBB Gold Member LMichaels's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Erik Tracy View Post
    Well, I tried cooking some thick sliced bacon in the Lodge this morning.

    Preheated for 10 minutes on "1.5", a little cool oil (you know "hot pan, cool oil = no stick").

    Then dropped in the bacon.

    It was non-stick, but after 20 minutes, the bacon was looking back at me saying "ah...nice beach weather, so warm, so nice".

    It felt like I was bbqin'g low and slow for breakfast, except breakfast was now getting to be brunch. No color or crisp.

    Cranked the burner up to a whopping "2.25" and finally started to get some sizzle and color - and that's when the tar started as well.

    I got a stiff putty knife from the garage and used that to scrape the pan smooth before the eggs. The eggs didn't stick too much.

    *bewildered*
    I'm late to the party here, but not sure why you're having all this issue. I use my Lodge CI stuff all the time. I have a Lodge flat griddle (I think 14" square) I use a LOT especially for breakfast. I like a steak and eggs. So many times I guy thin sliced ribeyes or thin strip steaks or I get tenderloin from Sam's and slice those thin. I use quite a lot of heat and a touch of grapeseed oil. When I get the steak to the second side a splash of EVOO goes on and I dump 2 eggs on and reduce heat. Eggs don't stick and are easy to flip for my over easy plus they only take about a minute or so to do thanks to the high residual heat in the iron. I love my CI stuff. I have a while bunch of it some VERY old from estate sales I have a small Wagner CI saute' pan. I have been able to trace it to be over 100 years old. Just love the thing.
    I don't know what you're describing with the "tar" but perhaps the oil you're using is bad? I have grown to detest Canola oil. It has a fishy odor turns rancid so quick you can watch it happen just awful stuff. I use ONLY olive oil or Grapeseed oil and that's all. And believe it or not I wash my pans in hot water, with a brush and YES horror of horrors I use SOAP! Once clean I simply put the pan on gentle heat to remove residual moisture and wipe it down with grapeseed oil. They're not teflon but they're close

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