Le Creuset Griddle - does it need to be seasoned?
I just received a Creuset cast-iron griddle as a gift. My question is... does it need to be pre-seasoned? The box it came in didn't have any instructions from the manufacturer. It doesn't look like typical cast iron, I'm assuming it may have some kind of coating but I really don't know.
If anyone out ther has one, did you season before using? If not, do you wish you had? And, if it doesn't have to be seasoned like typical cast-iron, how should I go about cleaning it?
Oh, and a bonus question... the Le Creuset Dutch Oven DID come with instructions from the manufacturer. They specifically said to NOT heat the Oven without oil or fat in it first. I always thought you were supposed to pre-heat the pot, then add oil. When I look on the Creuset website it says to do just that.... so, which one is right?
Thanks for any/all help!
I used the griddle for the first time this past weekend and it was just fanstic, but painful to clean.
On Saturday I cooked pancakes which this baby was just made for. They cooked quickly, evenly and came out great. I was able to fit 6 full sized flapjacks on the griddle at the same time and cook up a batch in just a few minutes. This is perfect for cooking a big breakfast for a number of people. The cleanup wasn't too bad, but a few of the pancakes left black spots on the griddle that wouldn't come off with soap and water. No big deal, they're just dark marks and they don't have a texture or smell.
On Sunday I grilled shrimp on the grill side of the pan. Again, it heated very evenly and allowed me to cook a large batch of shrimp with very little oil (As opposed to stir frying or cooking in a pan with oil). This time the clean-up was difficult. In addition to a few black spots, a light brown, very thin "crust formed in some of the grooves of the pan. If I scratched it with my finger I could get some of it off, but soap and water would not remove it. I know the pan is supposed to form a patina, and I believe this is what is happening, but if you put your nose right up to the grill, it leaves a smell. I don't think it'll be too harmful to the food, but time will tell.
Overall the griddle performed wonderfully, I just hope the patina isn't a detriment.
I have a Le Creuset Griddle pan and was told by the sales rep to my store that it is indeed enamelled but with black enamel. No seasoning required but it does require the same care as the regular enamel.
To clean the griddle I use just warm soapy water with a special scratchy sponge made for non stick surfaces because it is very gentle.
My Creuset instructions say to heat before adding oil.I have always done that and have had no problems.
Thanks applejuice! Would you happen to have the name brand or the special scratchy sponge? Seeing as these presents are wedding gifts I'd like to take extra-special care of them. It'd be very cool to keep these pieces in good shape for my lifetime... maybe hand them down to kids/grandkids :)
I think they are made R.S.V.P Endurance. They are called Non-stick scrubber. You can get them at Amazon.com but I got mine from the kitchen store down the street.
Enjoy your Creuset. I love mine so much if I pass them down to the grandkids I would probably have to buy new ones unless I just put them in the will :)
Basically I think that the formula of their 'iron' incorporates something that makes even the "uncoated grill pans" more rust resistant than typical cast iron. Of course enamel coating makes the outside of the pan less maintenance intensive. Despite the fact that the enamel is fired at very high temperature I think the cautions against heating the pan empty are to prevent damage due to thermal shock of putting cold food into a hot pan. Similarly that is why they warn against EVER using high heat even with the grill/griddle pans.