Jennifer Richardson wrote:Rufus,
The cast iron does take a bit longer to heat up, but in my book that’s a good thing—the extra thermal mass of the thick pan holds heat, which means your bread cooks evenly and forms a nice crust all over, and things don’t stick as easily to the heated pan.
Clayton High wrote:Got your sign up today Kerry, I think the tree perked up a bit when I told it that it got adopted!
Rufus Laggren wrote:> never use flax seed oil...
That's interesting. Would you explain or post links to clarify?
I think that any edible fat will probably work fine. Oil, lard, shortening, animal fat, butter, etc. I'm still doing a lot of experimenting and asking around. Lately, I've been favoring the use of bacon grease - the kind that is saved after frying bacon. I think a big part of this is that it is solid at room temp. Somehow, I think that that makes it harder and slicker as a seasoning.
I tried olive oil exclusively for a few months. If the cast iron skillet needed scrubbing, it seems that the scrubbing would take off some seasoning! I could see fresh cast iron (silver color - not black!).
Some people swear by shortening (Crisco). But I've heard some scary things about shortening, so I avoid it myself. I have used "organic shortening" which is actually palm oil. I've researched it pretty thoroughly and I like it!
Here's a great quote I found at homesteadingtoday.com:
I inherited my mom's fifty year old cast iron, and for a few years I always used crisco on them. I had pretty good results, most of the time, but once in awhile something would stick.
Last year I finally made some lard and we have been using it ever since on all of our cast iron- it is so much better than crisco. (I won't even address the use of veggie oils here, lol).
Our pans have a beautiful, deep black finish that is a hundred times better than any non-stick finish you could buy. It also helps that we use the pans frequently. I'll never go back to crisco.
My obsessive searching for information on this led me to this page which compares many different oils for their different strengths and weaknesses. Of note is "Grape Seed Oil" where they make the following comment "One caution: it's a fast drying oil so you want to clean up splatter right away because cleaning will be a lot harder in a few days. On the other hand, this makes it very good for seasoning bare steel and cast iron cookware." - this is the only oil where they even mention cast iron.
So I tried grape seed oil for a couple of months. Everything started to get a gummy residue on it. I have switched back to bacon squeezins, palm oil and sunflower oil. I'm looking around for organic lard (since I'm not raising pigs right now).
Rufus Laggren wrote:> That's interesting. Would you explain or post links to clarify?
Jennifer Richardson wrote:All right, this is pure self-indulgence, but we’ve been doing pancake breakfasts on the weekends a lot, and the idea of waffles keeps getting tossed around...
Jennifer Richardson wrote:It arrived!
Jennifer Richardson wrote:Well, it turns out we kind of suck at using a non-electric waffle maker, so we had piles of weird waffle crumbs instead, but I promise pics when we manage to make nice waffles!
And we did buy a big cast iron skillet, and then were given another that I rehabbed and re-seasoned, so we’re set in that regard!
Jennifer Richardson wrote:Maybe I will finally be better at something in the kitchen than Josiah is!
Jennifer Richardson wrote:I feel like they followed all those steps, but it just wasn't playing ball, which is kind of weird, since most of us have a lot of cast iron cooking and baking experience. I'm planning to give it a shot this weekend and see how it goes. Maybe I will finally be better at something in the kitchen than Josiah is!
Jennifer Richardson wrote:Well, it turns out we kind of suck at using a non-electric waffle maker, so we had piles of weird waffle crumbs instead...