When properly seasoned, a cast iron pan is perfect for non-stick cooking. It can handle everything from sizzling steaks to fluffy pancakes and everything in between. Plus, the polymerised iron goes a beautiful black colour that is gorgeous to look at. The best part of the deal? Seasoning a cast iron pan can be done at home on your laminate kitchen worktops without any fuss. The process is quick, simple, safe and provides you with multiple benefits. Here’s how it works.
Seasoning your pans isn’t done with salt, pepper and spices, contrary to what you might be thinking! Instead, it involves baking oil onto the cast iron through a process called polymerisation. By baking the oil, you form a natural, easy-release cooking surface that stops your pan from rusting and prevents your food from sticking as you cook.
Happily, seasoning a pan is pretty simple, so the process only takes around an hour. You can do it a couple of times a year for best results. The time you invest is definitely worthwhile though. Once seasoned, the pan will last for generations. Plus, as soon as it’s seasoned, every time you fry an egg or bake a pie, you’ll be adding extra layers of fat that will enhance your seasoning.
Seasoning a cast iron pan in the oven is as easy as 1-2-3:
Step 1: Scrub your pan
Before you set to work seasoning your pan, you first need to scrub it with warm, soapy water. Make sure the pan has been cleaned thoroughly and then rinse and hand dry it.
For the seasoning to work effectively, your pan will need to be bone dry. So we’d recommend making yourself a quick cuppa and leaving it on the drying rack for a few minutes, checking on it periodically.
Step 2: Apply your oil
Once the pan is completely dry, you should apply a thin, even layer of cooking oil to the inside and the outside of your cookware. But, make sure you don’t apply too much. If you do, the pan will become sticky to touch. To stop this from happening, it’s worth buffing the pan using some kitchen roll.
Top tip: all oils and fats work for the seasoning process, but vegetable oil is usually the best option. This is because it has a high smoke point and it’s cheap to buy.
Step 3: Bake for an hour
Preheat your oven to 200°C. Once hot, place your cookware in the oven upside down, with a large baking sheet beneath. During this time, the oil will polymerise and will create a hard, plastic-like coating. All you need to do now is leave the pan in the oven for one hour and then allow it to cool. Sorted!
It’s really that simple and easy, which is exactly how we like everything here at Savoy Timber. As soon as your pan has cooled, you can cook with it as normal. Remember, each time you now cook with some form of fat or oil, you’re adding more seasoning. A well-seasoned pan is a well-used one, so gather the whole family round and get cooking!
Once you’ve revitalised your cookware, you may also decide that your kitchen worktops need refreshing. And when that happens, rest assured that’s exactly where we can help. Here at Savoy Timber, we’ve got a huge range of laminate kitchen worktops to choose from, ranging from high gloss effects to stylish Zenith compact worktops. And if you have any questions or need any advice, we’re only a phone call away on 0345 0268 799!