Seasoning a cast iron pan?

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Just bout a new 10" Lodge brand cast iron pan. They claim is is preseasoned with vegetable oil. What is the way you would proceed with seasoning this? The claim of preseasioning kind of troughs me off on were to start.
 
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My great grandmother and grandmother always used vegetable oil smeared all over the inside and then put in the oven on low (200 degrees) for about an hour. I still have those cast iron pans and still treat them that way.
 
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Cook up some bacon for 6 days, on the seventh day let the pan rest in the oven (+/- 200°), after an hour or so turn off the oven, the next morning your pan is ready for a change so make some eggs in your fully seasoned pan.
 
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I've always done then the way Pitt's article says except that I don't turn it upside down. Bake an hour or so, turn off the oven, leave the pan in overnight and lightly wipe out excess when cool. I have a stamped steel, 12 in skillet (whole lot lighter than cast) that I use backpacking and I seasoned it the same way with good results. I just don't ever put liquids in it or I'll have to start over.
 
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never ever wash it with soap and water!
I have a dozen cast iron skillets some near 115 years old
Bacon was what was used in the day they were used everyday
Or lard.
 
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Decided not to try and get the factory seasoning out of the pan. Just to season the pan myself also to make sure it has been done right. No one here seems to be concerned with the factory seasoning as I was. Using vegetable oil in the oven twice then BACON a couple of times. Any excuse to cook bacon is a good excuse. Thanks for all the replies.
 
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When seasoning with oil in the oven, you turn the pan upside down so any excess oil does not pool. It would polymerize in the heat and turn into almost a plastic coating. Definitely not nonstick. You don't want that to happen. When cleaning a really crusted old pan, salt works wonders as a scrubber. For routine cleaning, my daughter found for me a chain made for that purpose. Small links, kind of like chain-mail. It is an excellent scrubber and cleans everything under running hot water. Leaves a smooth non-stick surface. Never use anything like a brillow pad or soap.
 
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Just bout a new 10" Lodge brand cast iron pan. They claim is is preseasoned with vegetable oil. What is the way you would proceed with seasoning this? The claim of preseasioning kind of troughs me off on were to start.

I used my Lodge cast iron Fryer with factory seasoning as I received it for about a year. After every use I heated it up wiped it with oil and expected the seasoning to take on the patina of my Grandma's skillet. It did not. The factory seasoning kept flaking off.

Tired of the "Factory Seasoning Fail", I put a wire brush head on my drill. I scrubbed off all the factory seasoning, sanded with fine grain sandpaper and started the seasoning process from scratch. Heat of stove. coat with oil, put in HOT over x 1 hour, then turn off and allow oven to cool, repeat.

I now LOVE my Lodge. That first year, with Factory seasoning was worse than loveless.
 
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Clean the pan with SOS or Brillo, rinse thoroughly.
coat liberally with Crisco, inside and out. including the handle
Put in oven, 350 degrees, middle rack, upside down
be sure to place a sheet of aluminum foil on the bottom of the oven, or the rack below the pan
heat for an hour, then let cool to the touch.
rinse out with hot water and a stiff brush
dry out the pan, even putting it over a burner to be sure the pan is dry.
pour a small amount of cooking oil (about 3/4 " in diameter) in the warm pan and spread it around with a paper towel. Just leave a thin film in the pan
rinse with hot water and a brush, dry, and apply a very thin coat if cooking oil after every use.
cooking bacon in the pan is also a great way to help season it.
NEVER use dish soap or abrasive soap pads to clean, the chain mail or copper scrubbies man be used for really stubborn stuff caught in the pan.

I use my Cast Iron pans almost every day. They are more stickproof than teflon, and you can use metal tools.
 

Zac

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Good advice all around. Here's my 2c:

Always heat the pan to dry it completely and open the pores before applying oil. I like to use microfiber towels but sturdy paper towels have worked for me as well.

If it is unseasoned/recently stripped it will rust a tiny bit drying it. There's nothing you can do about it except wide it with an oily towel, which you're going to do anyway before putting it in the oven.

After 5 or 10 minutes in a 400-450 degree oven I remove it and wipe it vigorously with a clean dry towel to remove all of the excess oil. I have experienced discoloration and some crackling when I've been less than vigorous with this step. Then it goes back in the oven upside down for an hour, shut the heat off and leave it for the night. Repeat tomorrow. I do firmly believe in over-400 degree temps, any less and it might not (fancy word that starts with a c) properly. I wish I had bookmarked the articles that convinced me of that so I could share them now.

I wouldn't expect the factory pre-seasoning to flake off but I know it's less than desirable. From what I understand Lodge applies it to keep them from rusting on the shelves. It is also the reason for the rough texture of the cooking surface as the increased surface area takes the pre-seasoning faster. (read: mass production hacks) I do not like the rougher texture so with my one modern lodge piece I stripped it completely with vinegar (it had rusted in the box...) and wet sanded (oil) the cooking surface quite a bit before re-seasoning.

I'll never buy brand new lodge again, in the case of cast iron I firmly believe 'they don't make it like they used to.'

The last step is the best step! Lots and lots of bacon.
 
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We have two cast iron pans, one a T. Eaton from Canada, the other a Griswold from the US. ( "Pans across the border"? Ha. )They both see constant everyday use so are seasoned frequently from various animal fats. Bacon is occasionally greasing the pan, but more often roast chicken sits atop a bed of vegetables or sometimes beef of some kind first seared and then finished off roasting in the oven. Hot soapy water won't hurt the seasoned pan but I prefer to just give it a quick hot water scrub with a plastic scouring brush. It comes up clean. After a few months I give it a season with rendered bacon fat, we keep a small dish of it in the fridge for certain recipes. I have used grapeseed oil to season the pans, and it works really well to polymerize on the pan but beware! Don't be impatient and apply too heavy a coating, it will flake and scratch this way. A hot strip in the oven and you're back to step one. Thin multiple coats work best using an oil with a high smoke point. Or as we do these days, just keep it in use with any vegetable/animal fats in moderation.
 
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The temperature of the oven for seasoning is dependent on the oil used. It needs to be hot enough to polymerize the oil. Every oil is a little different, but in general hotter is better.
 
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We use bacon grease. I have 2 friends who swear by using beeswax.
 
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The temperature of the oven for seasoning is dependent on the oil used. It needs to be hot enough to polymerize the oil. Every oil is a little different, but in general hotter is better.
Just to be clear, you want to polymerize the oil in the pores of the iron, not in a puddle on the bottom of the pan. Which is why it is put upside down in the oven. I've always heard that you need to use very high temperatures.
 
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I have been using Flaxseed oil on my steel, cast aluminum and cast iron fry pans for the last ten years or so, works great.
Here is a good link to the process.
 
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