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Help! Stuck waffles :(

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Hello! I bought (via ebay) a Sunbeam CG-1 waffle iron (primarily to avoid using nonstick surfaces) and I went to use it for the first time this morning. I previously seasoned the plates using the oven method and Safflower oil and Grapeseed oil. I seasoned them through 3 or 4 cycles. I thought I had seasoned them enough but when we went to make waffles this morning, it was a stuck mess.
1) How do I clean off the waffle iron now that it's a mess?
2) How do I properly season or cook the waffles? I know I am not supposed to use a non-stick spray on it but should I oil it before each batch?
Thank you in advance for any assistance! :)

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  1. I use toothpicks or bamboo skewers to clean such things. I use a small amount of oil with each batch and use a brush to get all the nooks and crannies. I find that as an iron gets used that way it seasons over time, and it seems as if cooking waffles in it helps it season better than just oil/heat seasoning.

    1. Nothing can be as non-stick as the Teflon nonstick cookware. So let's make sure we have the correct expectation.

      Sunbeam waffle iron has cast aluminum cooking surface. Not only you need to season you cast aluminum plates, but you will need to use more cooking oil to coat the plate during the waffle making. Timing and temperature is also important. This is something you will find out on your own by trial and error.

      You see similar phenomena have been repeatedly mentioned in other cookware too. Is it possible to cook egg without sticking to a stainless steel surface? Yes, but you will need to use more oil, and you will need to cook at the correct temperature for a certain time window.

      If you only have a bit of stick materials, then I would just use bamboo skewers or toothpicks as mentioned by Tim. Plastic utensils (like plastic forks and knives) are good too -- basically, anything which would not hurt your seasoning. If you really have a sticky mess, then I would soak the aluminum plates in water for at least 5 min, before cleaning.

      No, you don't want to use any nonstick spray. Have you seasoned cast iron cookware before? Same rule.

      Yes, you will need to oil it before each batch. At least in the beginning.

      1. Thanks Chem & Tim -- I think I didn't use enough oil. I know it won't be as non-stick as Teflon, but this was pretty bad. I'll work on picking the blueberry waffles out of the waffle iron. I'm pretty sure I'm going to need to soak it first.
        Any recommendation for an oil to use in the future?

        1 Reply
        1. re: LPJ13

          <Any recommendation for an oil to use in the future?>

          Many people believe lard to be better, but in my experience, most cooking oil will work. Just make sure that you don't use extra virgin olive oil.

        2. How much butter or oil was in the batter? I use a recipe with 2 eggs/ 2 1/2 cups liquid/ 2 cups flour and 1 stick butter. You do not even have to grease the iron. It still works pretty well with 3/4 the butter. Half the butter can lead to trouble.

          Also, you can not check for doneness by looking. If you hear sizzling or see steam coming out, they are not done. If you gently try to open the iron and it seems stuck, just wait. During normal cooking, the waffles stick like glue. Have faith. When they turn golden brown, they come unstuck.

          A toothbrush can be good for cleaning.

          1. 1/4 c melted butter was in the recipe - I'll just have to adjust some of the recipes a bit for the waffle iron. I usually make blueberry waffles when I make them.

            1. Hi, LPJ:

              Cleaning: small brass-bristled "toothbrush".

              Not sticking: season again after cleaning, and then do *not* wash it. Brush it out, carefully blow out all detritus, and re-oil regularly. Tens of thousands of restaurants have used these Al irons in some form or another for decades. Once you get the temperature/time dialed in, it's easy.

              Don't be intimidated. Waffle batter is cheap, and the birds love the learning curve.

              Aloha,
              Kaleo

              1 Reply
              1. re: kaleokahu

                We always make the first one for the dog.

              2. I just scored a sunbeam CG-1 on Sunday morning at a yard sale for .........

                yep.

                $1.

                can't wait to go through the same frustrations, LPJ13.

                1. I have 5 CG-1's that I have picked up over the years. My main one is one I inherited from Mom, who bought it in 1950. Do not get anal about spotless grids, mine are a light brown, and are now nonstick. If I get a chance I will post the original Sunbeam recipe that came with the iron. I have yet to have any stick, and I do not add any oil, etc to the plates, just pour, and wait. When the top opens, they may lift out of the bottom grid, but a gentle pull with a fork will get them dropping out of the upper grids. All I do when I am done is let it cool, and put it away. If anything is left on the grids I just lightly wipe it with a paper towel.

                  Enjoy your new CG-1 , it truly is a wonderful item to have.