Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Cookware >
Nov 5, 2009 11:12 AM

anyone else crazy for cast iron?

Bought 3 totally gross cast iron skillets at a yard sale. Bought them cuz they were a "name" brand. May be heresy, but I used oven cleaner to get rid of someone elses, unknown schmutz. Once cleaned up and reseasoned, some of my favorite cookware. IMO, a nice black skillet is easier for over-easy eggs than chasing them around super slick non-stick.

Have been told, once you have 3 of something, you have a collection... mine has grown! When I got to 2 of several sizes, started giving it to people I knew would appreciate it. KNEW SIL and niece would NOT, so didn't even bother. Gave a nice big Lodge/Griswold skillet to sister and was so happy to see it sitting out on her stove top.

Have a pretty full collection now... ALL either yard sale or thrift store finds. Guess some people don't like the weight and THINK it's hard to maintain. Last acquisition was one of those corn bread pans... just cuz I didn't have one. Most unusual could be a SMALL square/diamond shaped Lodge skillet. On bottom it says specifically for eggs?? Perfect for an egg sandwich. Found a LeCrueset enamel (exterior) grill pan, in PERFECT condition, at a thrift store for $5! A 2 burner L grill/griddle that I admit I've only used 2-3 times.

Strange use for less than great CI skillets. Squirrels KILLED gas line on grill last summer. When replacement parts were HALF what I paid for grill (not high end at all), made my "red-neck" grill. Took out all the gas guts and used no-name skillets to hold coals.

Any other Cast Iron Crazies out there?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. The original comment has been removed
    1. The original comment has been removed
      1. Count me in the crazy column too! I didn't know what I was missing. Now I won't cook with anything else. I love the stuff. I don't collect my cast iron, I cook with it, every single day.

        It did take me a little while to learn how to maintain it properly, but once I did, I never looked back. It's the best! I keep hearing about you lucky ones that find it in thrift stores and garage sales. I never do. All mine has been bought retail, mostly Lodge, but I also have a very cheap set of skillets I got 3 for $9 and a Tramontina enamel dutch oven. On the higher end, I do own a couple of LC pans: one was a birthday gift and the other I got in a closeout sale.

        To hear some people talk, the modern naked cast iron is too rough to be of any use. ....BUNK! The more you actually cook with cast iron, the better it gets.

        1. I have my grandma's cast iron frying pan that my father remembers her buying from a door-to-door pedlar in 1934 for $2.85. |t is my fav pan and I take very good care of it. I just about had a heart attack when I discovered a house guest had put it in the dishwasher.

          So count me in.

          2 Replies
          1. re: pengcast

            I was once just in time to catch a "helpful" houseguest putting a cherished cast iron pan of mine in the dishwasher. I might have overreacted......

            1. re: chuff

              LOL, chuff. My imagination is running wild. To you and pengast, don't you just love "helpful" houseguests? ;-0 P.S. pengast, loved hearing about the pedigree of your pan. I can see why it's such a treasure.

          2. Too much so, I'm afraid. I tend to get obsessions, and since stumbling across this blog early this year ( ) and then joining the Wagner and Griswold Society, I've been haunting Ebay and junk shops and have seen my collection of vintage cast iron EXPLODE from just a turn-of-the century Piqua dutch oven and my mother's old chicken a COMPLETE set of Griswold large logo skillets (well, starting at #3, that is; I'm no millionaire), three more dutch ovens, two griddles, two muffin pans, two cornstick pans, a waffle iron, really old ERIE skillets (around 120 years old) in sizes 7, 8, 9, 10, and 12, and about 20 other miscellaneous skillets by other makers I picked up along the way, but set aside in favor of the Griswolds (ERIEs are early Griswold). I have a nice stockpile of Christmas and birthday gifts for everyone, under my bed, now. Hah!

            2 Replies
            1. re: Beckyleach

              Oh, forgot to add: As surely as "if you give a mouse a cookie, he's gonna want a glass of milk," I've now branched out into esoterica such as finding matching LIDS for all my skillets. They're expensive, though. Currently I just have them for my #8, 9, and 10 Griswolds. At least they don't take up much storage room...the lids.... ;-/

              1. re: Beckyleach

                Just moments ago I walked into an antique store and walked out with a nice little stack of 3 Griswold skillets of varying sizes and a large mystery skillet whose bottom is so caked with gunk that no branding or logo is visible. I can't wait to get the mystery pan into the electro tank and find out whether or not I scored.