Are you a minimalist? Check. Are you an environmentalist? Check. Loved grandma’s cooking of pan seared beef with lard? Check check check. Then Lodge’s pre seasoned cast iron skillet will be just the right Christmas gift for you. And even if you don’t have a common ground with the questions posed, you’ll still be impressed with the cast iron cookware that will last you generations.
The Natural Non Stick
At first glance, the 10 ¼ “skillet (measuring around 8 ½” internally) wouldn’t strike you as anything special. In fact it resembles grandma’s old cookware from her little run down kitchen in the country house. Upon closer inspection, you’ll notice that the internal surface of the black charcoal looking skillet is a little bumpy; much like acne bumps on an adolescent’s face. Oh…those years of raging hormones.
But don’t worry, the unevenness of the surface is actually a good thing. (Teenage me rolling her eyes in disbelief). This is actually due to the pre seasoning of the skillet and it is these very bumps that will allow you to roast your chicken to perfection without having them stick to the pan. In fact they act as a natural non stick coating that doesn’t come off like mistreated non stick cookware.
This skillet can be used to cook practically anything from baking scrumptious brownies, frying vegetables ala Chinese style to grilling honeyed pork chops and can sit practically on top of anything that emits heat from the conventional cooking stove, the flaming grill, your large oven to the campfire in the wild outdoors (or the back of your house). It’s an all in one cookware and that’s a plus if you don’t like your kitchen being cluttered with too many pieces of cookware.
You’ll notice that there are 2 little spouts on each side of the skillet, making it user friendly for both left and right handed people. Oh, and they also have both a long handle as well as a little gripper, both on opposite sides of each other making it easy to hold the skillet. (It’ll be a lot harder to balance using just the long handle alone). Both the long handle and the short gripper have holes to allow you to hang the skillet on your kitchen’s wall of fame. Talk about ergonomics!
Not for the Work-Shy
Bear in mind that this cookware might not be suitable for lazy cooks. You’ll need to coat your skillet with a little oil prior to using it (not an issue) and also after it has been washed with hot water (not boiling water though), without soap (umm…yay?) and patted dry with a towel. Follow this with a heating of the skillet after the oil has been added. This is to achieve the non stick characteristics of the skillet. The task can be a little trying for people who want things done quickly.
You’ll need a lot of patience and determination to keep up with this routine of pre and post coating of the skillet. This cookware is also not for amateur cooks. Sure it heats up really fast and evenly, but if you’re not too careful, you might end up serving charred potatoes to your in laws. That would not be a pretty sight.
Also, it can be quite heavy but hey, you’ll get to exercise those sagging arm muscles of yours.
Best for the Pros
This cookware is ideal for seasoned cooks and would definitely last them a lifetime under good maintenance. Amateur cooks? Good luck learning the ropes. The additional advantage is the amazingly affordable price. Fifteen bucks for a piece of cookware that will last decades? I’m in. Get this skillet here.