How to Use a Cast Iron Skillet

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How to Use a Cast Iron Skillet

Cast iron cookware has withstood the test of time, passed down from generation to generation, and is a favourite of many chefs. Cast iron cookware is durable, heats food evenly, and retains heat very well. A cast iron skillet adds unmatched texture and flavour to prepared food. Its versatility allows cooks to use it on the stovetop or in the oven. Learning about the different cooking methods to use with a cast iron skillet allows consumers to incorporate this piece of cookware into their everyday cooking routines.

 

Cooking with Cast Iron

To sauté or braise food with cast iron, heat the skillet normally over a heat source and follow the recipe. Spray the surface with a non-stick cooking spray for easier cleanup. A cast iron skillet can safely go right from the stovetop to the oven for recipes that require it.
For frying, place the cast iron skillet on the stove and turn the burner onto the recommended setting. Add oil, lard, or shortening to the skillet and heat it to the desired temperature. Use a liquid thermometer to check the temperature.
Bake food such as cakes and brownies in a cast iron skillet directly. Keep in mind that some recipes require heating the cast-iron skillet before adding the contents to the pan.

 

Cast Iron Cooking Methods

Cast iron is useful for several types of cooking. This makes it possible to cut down on the number of cookware pieces needed in the kitchen. It can save the consumer time and space in their cupboards.

 

Method

Types of Recipes

Sautéing

Stir-fry

Vegetables

Chili

Frying

Fish

Chicken

Breaded vegetables

Braising

Lamb shanks

Short ribs

Venison tenderloin

Baking

Corn bread

Cobbler

Cake

 

When cleaned and seasoned properly, cast iron is useful for preparing a wide variety of dishes from main meals to side items. Seasoning a cast-iron skillet regularly also gives it a non-stick cooking finish.

 

Cleaning a Cast Iron Skillet

Clean a cast iron skillet after each use; however, clean it differently than other pans. After cooking in cast iron, rinse it out well with hot water. Fill the pan with hot water, covering the entire cooking surface. Place the cast iron skillet on the burner and heat it. Allow the water to boil for about 5 minutes, which helps to remove cooked-on remnants of food.
Use a spatula or scraper to loosen any food that is still stuck to the pan. Then, dispose of the dirty water. Finally, use a damp paper towel to wipe out the inside of the skillet.

Seasoning Cast Iron

To season a cast iron skillet, wash it first in hot, soapy water. Scrub it with a stiff, wired brush, then rinse the pan well, and dry it completely. Rub the inside and outside of the skillet lightly with cooking oil or melted vegetable shortening. Place a layer of aluminium foil onto the bottom oven rack, then heat the oven to 175 degrees Celsius.
Turn the cast iron skillet upside down and place it on the top oven rack, then bake for 1 hour. Finally, with the oven off, allow the skillet to remain in the oven for approximately 1 hour longer.

 

How to Buy a Cast Iron Skillet on eBay

On eBay, there are several styles, brands, and sizes of cast iron skillets from which to choose. In the search box, type in the type of skillet you need, whether it is new or gently used cast iron cookware. Reliable sellers offer several options for smaller skillets such as the 15 cm size, or a larger skillet such as the 48 cm variety. Additionally, find a large selection of cast iron roasters and cast iron Dutch ovens for your other recipes that require more space than a regular skillet provides.

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