Seasoning Cast Iron

Discussion in 'Egg, Chicken, & Other Favorite Recipes' started by Stacykins, Jul 1, 2011.

  1. Stacykins

    Stacykins Overrun With Chickens

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    Jan 19, 2011
    Escanaba, MI
    As much as the internet is helpful, I am finding SO much mixed information regarding seasoning cast iron. I had a set of cast iron pans from my grandmother, and I'd lent them to my sister. I just dug them out of where they were packed, hoping to make some cornbread in them and THE SEASONING IS GONE!!!! Perfectly seasoned cast iron cookware lovingly cared for over the years is now ruined. Now I have to start from square one. I've never done that before, only done maintenance seasoning, i.e. wiping with oil and then heat 'til smoke on the stovetop.

    Can I use coconut oil on it? I only have that and olive oil on hand. I tend to use the food quality coconut oil in soap making, but it seems like it would work well with seasoning. I know I'll have to probably put on several layers and bake the cookware in the oven for each layer to build the seasoning back up again.
     
  2. SallyF

    SallyF Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 5, 2009
    Middle Tennessee
    I've had better luck seasoning them with a harder shortening, such as frying chicken in lard or Crisco. Once they're seasoned I wipe them with oil for storage. If I just wipe them with the oil and then heat them, they seem to get sticky.
     
  3. Gardengirl 2011

    Gardengirl 2011 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Central Florida
    I've just always heated them really hot on the stovetop and cooked a pound of bacon in them. Then drain the fat, let cool and wipe out.
     
  4. BarefootMom

    BarefootMom Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 20, 2010
    Half Way, Missouri
    if the pan hasn't been used in awhile or is washed by a person that doesn't know how to use cast iron (my DH) I do this method:

    Heat the oven to 250- 300F

    Coat the pan with lard or bacon grease. Don't use a liquid vegetable oil because it will leave a sticky surface and the pan will not be properly seasoned.

    Put the pan in the oven. In 15 minutes, remove the pan & pour out any excess grease. Place the pan back in the oven and bake for 2 hours.
     
  5. Stacykins

    Stacykins Overrun With Chickens

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    Jan 19, 2011
    Escanaba, MI
    I am gonna have to go into town tomorrow to see if I can wrangle up some lard. I would cook bacon in the pan so the grease could help season it, but I personally don't like the taste of bacon. I do have a couple of pounds of old style, thick cut bacon in the freezer made by a local butcher, because my father loves it when he visits. But if I cooked it up, unless chickens like bacon it would be a bit of a waste! Anyone want to come over for breakfast tomorrow? [​IMG]

    Coconut oil is actually a solid at room temperature, and has a very high smoke point. Oddly it has more saturated fad than lard, beef tallow, or shortening. It also resists rancidity very well. That is why I thought it might work for seasoning. I know other vegetable oil like corn oil is definitely a no go for seasoning.
     
  6. al6517

    al6517 Real Men can Cook

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    I have also found Lard is the best because it won't go rancid from storing for long periods. Heating a gallon or so or how much ever your pot will hold safely also helps to penetrate the pores of the iron giving a faster longer lasting seasoning to it. I store all my cast iron in heavy wooden crates lined with greased brown gun paper to keep out moisture, while coating the cast iron with Vasoline. The vasoline does not harm it and leaves no taste but I do cook it off before using them, Vasoline will last forever and never rust up your cookwear. I have had some of my best pieces for over 30 yrs and they are still going strong and look fantastic.
     
  7. rebelcowboysnb

    rebelcowboysnb Confederate Money Farm

    Quote:Thats pretty much how I do it with new ones an washed ones.
     
  8. Erebus

    Erebus Chillin' With My Peeps

    I cure mine in the oven or on the stove top. Butter is great - my pan loves me after a big batch of pancakes [​IMG] Remember that salt is corrosive so salt free oils are best.
    Linseed is fine for most cast iron, but most of the time I am using the pan soon after so I just use whatever oil I am cooking with (normally rice bran oil).

    This was the link sent to me by the guy who made my wood-burner stove:
    http://www.richsoil.com/cast-iron.jsp
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2011
  9. Sportsterjeep

    Sportsterjeep Creekside Acres Farm

    Jun 1, 2010
    Mill Hall PA
    another thing that is quite often overlooked but helps to "set" the new seasoning is the after fry. Once your pan is re-seasoned, do this the following day. Fill it with oil or lard, slice down some potatoes and make a batch of french fries. When they are done, throw the oil and fries out as they normally take on a fresh metallic taste. I've found this works really well to help set the new seasoning and get rid of the metallic taste that usually comes with the first use.
     
  10. bargain

    bargain Love God, Hubby & farm Premium Member

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    Bowdon, GA
    If you have a campfire, or a burning pile and if one is permitted by your locals, then put the cast iron in to burn off any old residue before cleaning and oiling again. I remember my granny used to clean an old one with sand as well.!
     

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