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How to season your skillet
How to do ? Follow the guide, you will quickly become addicted to the technique.
First of all, it is important to know that only some materials can be seasoned: carbon steel tools, raw cast iron and porous enamelled cast iron (black inside - e.g. Staub cocottes). Stainless steel skillets or light colored enameled cast iron cocottes (e.g Le Creuset) generally cannot be seasoned. In addition, some pans are already seasoned industrially (e.g. Lodge enameled cast iron), so they do not need to undergo the first seasoning; maintenance is enough.
AFTER PURCHASE / BEFORE FIRST USE: The 1st seasoning
- Wash your skillet with a steel wool or a fairly sturdy brush and soap. Rinse and dry completely. Put the pan on the stove and turn the heat to medium for a few minutes, that’s the time that it will take for the residual humidity to dissipate.
- Take a neutral oil with a high temperature resistance and coat the pan with a thin layer all over (inside and out).
- Note to the reader: use, for example, vegetable, canola or grapeseed oil. A neutral oil will not change the taste of your dishes and an oil that is resistant to high temperatures will not burn quickly when cooking.
- Put the skillet in the oven at 400F for 1 hour. Let the skillet cool in the oven or outside the oven.
- Repeat steps 2 and 3 to obtain at least 3 layers. You can put on more layers, but the additional residual benefit decreases as the number of layers increases.
- Wipe off any excess fat that may form as it cools and store the pan.
FOR THE 1ST USE / SUBSEQUENT USES: The Maintenance
- Take the pan out and put it on the stove. Heat the skillet over medium-high heat for a few minutes, until the heat is distributed throughout the skillet.
- Test the heat of your pan: when you sprinkle a few water droplets into the pan, they should dance on the surface (like mercury on a surface). If they evaporate quickly, the pan is not hot enough.
- Pour in your cooking oil when you're ready to cook. Put in your food and cook as usual.
- When you're done, remove the food from the skillet and wash your skillet with a sturdy horsehair brush and hot water, but no soap. Rinse and pat the skillet dry with a paper towel.
- Return skillet to medium heat and allow moisture to evaporate. Apply a thin layer of oil to the inner surface with a paper towel and remove excess as needed. Store your skillet.
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