Cast Iron skillet assistance
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  1. #1
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    Default Cast Iron skillet assistance

    Howdy all. I'm a new owner of a cast iron skillet. Me being new, the skillet is in the neighborhood of 70 years old.

    I inherited the skillet from my grandma, she got it as a gift in the 40s, but isn't sure when exactly. She's on vacation with my parents, so I can't reach her to ask.

    I used the skillet for the first time Sunday night. Cooked 2 small pork loin in it. Problem is now the skillet, after washing it in the sink, has marks where the loins cooked. Those 2 spots are rough where the rest of the skillet bottom is smooth.

    What caused this? I used oil to cook them so they wouldn't stick, didn't I use enough, or maybe the wrong kind?

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    Registered User Contrary Housewife's Avatar
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    If you scrape it with a knife will it come off? It is unlikely that you removed the layer of seasoning on a 70 yr old skillet, so I am betting that some of the pork stuck. Meat does that. A little more oil next time maybe. Another tip, when meat is done coking it will naturally release from a well seasoned pan. Perhaps you moved the meat before it had completely cooked on that side and some came off in the pan and burned. If so you should be able to scrape it off with a butter knife or metal spatula.

    Do not, under any circumstances, soak that pan in the sink. That will ruin the finish.
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    It doesn't come off, it looks and feels indented. Guess a drizzle of canola oil wasn't enough. I was hoping not to have to call Grandma for help, I'll never live it down.

    I'll clean it with soap and the fine grit steel wool she gave me. Any advice on seasoning? I remember getting in trouble for playing in the Crisco when I was little and they were seasoning the skillets. Is there a better option now days?

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    Registered User Contrary Housewife's Avatar
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    Can you share a photo? That sounds really odd to me.

    Crisco is still a good choice. Canola oil works, too. Or you can fry a whole bunch of bacon.

    The Lodge cookware site may be helpful, too: Lodge Cast Iron | All About Seasoning
    Stop trying to organize all of your family’s crap. If organization worked for you, you’d have rocked it by now. It’s time to ditch stuff and de-crapify your world.

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    Super Moderator josantoro's Avatar
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    Cast iron is pretty indestructible. I would bet, after you cook a few more things in there, you won't see the marks anymore.
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    Registered User Precarrious's Avatar
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    You are blessed to inherit such a wonderful gift. I have been collecting cast iron pans since my husband and I married 30 years ago. His grandmother had an amazing collection and used every pan. While we did not inherit grandma Amy’s pans, I still think of her every time I cook. Find memories come rushing back every time.

    A tip from Grandma Amy to clean your pan: clean it while it is still warm, use kosher salt and half a potato for stubborn stuck on stuff and it also gets rid of rust, shortening or a heavy oil like canola or vegetable for seasoning (it’s a matter of preference). Do not use soap. If your pan needs to be reasoned heavily oil your pan, place pan inside oven, heat oven to 275, once oven reaches 275 turn off oven, leave your pan in oven overnight or about 6-8 hours, wipe out excess oil and you should be good to go!

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    Registered User MaggieTrudeau's Avatar
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    when frying pans (cast iron was assumed) would get something crusty, or too much crust on the outside, the refused to budge, my grampa would put them on the campfire and let them sit in there until it burned down and they cooled off naturally. Then they got re-seasoned with lard or heavy oil and daily use.

    biggest personal cast iron tragedy: At college, in my first apartment, I came home from my night shift job to find my roommate (city girl from a revereware family) had put my cast iron skillet (inherited from gramma) in the sink to soak with LOTS of dawn type dish detergent and gone to bed!!!! She was trying to get it back to silver. She didn't realize it was never silver. Other than that she was a great roommate.

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    Super Moderator Spirit Deer's Avatar
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    Stuff is more likely to stick in cast iron if it's not preheated.

    If I'm not removing rust from CI, I strip it to bare metal by running it through the self cleaning cycle in my stove oven. If it's rusty, I hook it up to a battery charger and toss it in a pail of water and washing soda solution.

    I often soak CI overnight and have never had a problem.

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    Lots of great tips here!

    I second using it a few more times and between uses, don't wash it, just wipe it out and apply a new coating of oil to it.

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