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Cast Iron Questions, still

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nickdanger Jan 10, 2005 11:52 AM

In response to previous post re seasoning a flea market cast iron skillet, I followed recs re washing with soapy water, coating with vegetable oil and put in oven for 2 hours. When I took the skillet out, it was sticky. I'm thinking something is not right here. Help please

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  1. s
    Spencer Jan 10, 2005 11:59 AM

    Use lard or crisco. V oil will make sticky, as you see.
    Spencer

    5 Replies
    1. re: Spencer
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      bill Jan 10, 2005 06:45 PM

      After you have used your cast iron for a while, run it through the cleaning cycle in your oven and all of the junk will flake off of it and it will be like new.

      1. re: bill
        s
        Someguy Jan 10, 2005 11:54 PM

        This is a joke right? For heavens sake why would I want to ruin the seasoning I've built up for years? That stuff adds flavor!

        1. re: Someguy
          b
          Bill Jan 15, 2005 03:33 PM

          This is a once a decade activity. The coating can start to flake off so I put it through a complete cleaning and reseasoning.

        2. re: bill
          s
          sudiepav Jan 11, 2005 08:17 AM

          Actually, I've thought of doing that. I have an old cast iron skillet with about 1/4" or more of crud on the outside(the inside is beautiful). I asked the Lodge folks, via e-mail, and they advised using oven cleaner on the outside only on an upside down skillet. I did this several times, and it helped, but only a little. I figured I'd run it thru the self-cleaning cycle when next I clean my oven and then treat the skillet as a new pan. However, the inside is wonderfully blackened and seasoned, and I'm not sure what I'd accomplish, except making the outside look more esthetically pleasing.

          1. re: sudiepav
            s
            Seattle Rose Jan 11, 2005 12:17 PM

            The outside of my skillet is the much the same -- a many-years' accumulation of gunk. But it isn't sticky and doesn't interfere with cooking. The inside of my pan is beautifully seasoned. I just leave the outside as it is. By the way, I always wash my pan with soap and water. No rust, no problems. It must be the many years' of seasonoing I have built up.

      2. n
        Nancy Berry Jan 10, 2005 12:35 PM

        Also, make sure that you put the pan into the oven upside-down. This will keep the melted Crisco or oil (peanut oil is good) from pooling in the center of the pan thereby leaving an unseasoned spot there. And you should use a higher temperature than most websites recommend. Heat the oven to 450, place the pan in there for an hour and you should have a nicely seasoned piece of cast iron. If you let the pan cool and repeat this procedure, it will be even better.

        Here's a link that gives more detailed instructions:

        Link: http://www.naturalhealthweb.com/artic...

        1 Reply
        1. re: Nancy Berry
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          nja Jan 10, 2005 01:39 PM

          I use 500 degrees. Open all the windows and doors because it's going to smoke like mad.

          -Nick

        2. a
          annie Jan 10, 2005 02:55 PM

          Has any one tried the "pre-seasoned" cast iron pots? Are they are good as if you season it yourself?

          1. e
            Evan Jan 10, 2005 03:27 PM

            Just repeat the process and it will come out seasoned. Or just make some bacon in the pan tonight. that should get enough oil in it to start the seasoning process.

            1. m
              MKatrinaToo Jan 10, 2005 09:28 PM

              EXTREME MEASURES: I've acquired lots of griswold cast iron pieces in various conditions. If you're not a do-it-youselfer, then it's worth buying cleaned and seasoned pieces for up to $25.00, depending on the piece and your location. I'm lucky enough to have a father-in-law w/ a full stocked shop. I've sand blasted pieces, then coated the piece w/ vegetable oil--which works for me, then baked it on low for two hours in the oven. After that, I merely scrape clean w/ a dishcloth, using my own fingernails on stubborn food particles. Then I put the piece on stovetop, low, to dry; when dry, I rub interior w/ vegetable oil, using a paper towel; when warm, I wipe off excess, let it cool and it's done. Some folks will tell you that everything I do is not correct, but it has worked well for me for 25 years.

              1. m
                MKatrinaToo Jan 10, 2005 09:33 PM

                A few last notes: when storing, do NOT store w/ lid in closed position; keep it ajar. If you insist on storing it closed, crumple up some paper inside it. Also, the more you use the cast iron and the more it's seasoned, it will acquire a satiny feel. Theoretically, if you subject it to the drastic treatment I describe and then maintain it, it should stay seasoned forever. If you do cook acidic foods in it (tomatoes, etc.), you don't want to store leftovers in it. And the best way to keep it conditioned is to use it regularly.

                1. m
                  mod'ern Jan 10, 2005 10:16 PM

                  Follow Nancy's advice about seasoning it upside down. (Put something underneath to catch the drippings.)

                  Also note that a newly seasoned cast-iron pan is not going to be black. It's brownish. As you use it--and clean it with a only stiff brush and warm water--it will create a better coat of seasoning. I like to dry and recoat w/ a little oil (and heating it) after cleaning to spur on the seasoning.

                  I know your's is an old pan. But given the situation, you may have to treat it like a new pan.

                  1. r
                    rabaja Jan 11, 2005 01:32 PM

                    I have a similar problem with a Griswold cast iron pan I got years ago at a sidewalk sale. For years it was fine, I cleaned the rust off when I bought it, and seasoned it and used it frequently, no problems. Several months ago I used it, rinsed it out and dried it on my stove before adding oil and coating evenly with a paper towel. The next day, it was very sticky/tacky! I don't know how to fix it! I've tried washing it, throwing it in the oven in the hope the finish would flake off, nothings worked. Anyway, it sounds like the same problem you have, and unfortunately the replies don't seem to be addressing your/my PROBLEM.
                    A couple of things which may have caused it are:
                    1. Wrong oil I usually use peanut oil, but may have grabbed veg. oil that fateful night!
                    2. Forgot to wipe out excess oil befor it cooled off ???
                    Any suggestions on HOW TO GET RID OF STICKINESS are greatly appreciated. Thanks!

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: rabaja
                      n
                      nickdanger Jan 12, 2005 01:51 PM

                      Last night I basically started over, and did not yet obtain the desired/advertised result of a smooth, totally non-sticky surface. I am going to bake it again tonight.

                      1. re: nickdanger
                        s
                        swingline Jan 12, 2005 03:53 PM

                        As some other posters have already stated, use crisco. Much better results.

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