Do you own a cast iron skillet? Once they are seasoned – and that doesn’t take too long – this is a great non stick skillet. I love my cast iron skillet. My favorite food to make is pan fried steaks. I season each side with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper,add 1-2 Tablespoons of oil over medium heat until shimmering, add steak and pan fry each side 5-7 minutes, let rest 5 minutes and you have a simple and delicious steak.
I have a Lodge Cast Iron Skillet. Very reasonably priced – $26.95 – and this will last you a lifetime.
Here is how to take care of your skillet. I got this information from their website.
If you do Nothing Else
Hand wash. Dry immediately—even before first use.
Rub with a light coat of vegetable oil after every wash.
How much oil? Enough to restore the sheen, without being “sticky”. (I use 1 teaspoon to 1 Tablespoon, depending on how the oil absorbs into the skillet)
Why? To keep the iron “seasoned” and protected from moisture.
To Soap or not to Soap
If no soap is too scary, wash with mild soapy water and dry and oil immediately. (I DO NOT use soap, water and heat work together very well to clean my skillet) Consider that cookware is 400ºF in 4 minutes on medium heat and is sterile at 212º F, so soap isn’t always necessary.
Dishwashers, strong detergents and metal scouring pads are not recommended, as they remove seasoning. (Never, ever put in disherwasher. No need to at all. My opinion for what it is worth.) 🙂
Seasoning—It isn’t Salt and Pepper
“Seasoning” is vegetable oil baked onto the iron at a high temperature: not a chemical non-stick coating.
Seasoning creates the natural, easy-release properties. The more you cook, the better it gets.
Because you create, maintain, and even repair the “seasoning”, your cookware can last 100 years or more. (If I have 30 years I’ll be happy!) Chemical non-stick coating cannot be repaired, limiting lifespan.
Acidic foods like tomatoes, beans, and certain sauces can damage seasoning, and should be avoided until the seasoning is well-established. (I avoid tomatoes in my skillet. I have my stainless steel fry pan for most sauces – tomato based or not.)
Cast Iron rarely needs to go above a medium heat setting when properly pre-heated. For the times when you do cook at higher temperatures, add oil to cookware just before adding food to prevent sticking.
Our handles get hot; use mitts. Use trivets to protect countertops from hot cookware.