In your grandmother’s day, cast iron was the favored material for permanent cooking pots, and the cookware has made a comeback in American kitchens. Whether the outside of this pan is enameled or it’s the first black iron, if you wash the pan properly, it will last for decades. Iron’s heat properties as well as the non-stick layer of seasoning that forms on the iron make it a natural choice for frying, roasting and baking. To keep your cast iron in tiptop condition, make a very simple cleaning ritual a habit after each use, and avoid cooking acid foods like tomatoes or apples in it — the acid deteriorates the seasoning layer.
Wipe out the cast-iron pan once you finish cooking using it, eliminating as many meals particles as possible. If pieces are stuck into the pan, then use a little bit of water mixed with a few drops of mild dishwashing soap to wipe it, or use a plastic scrubber or scraper to loosen them. Wash the pan and then wipe it dry immediately; many cooks set the pan to the stovetop and dry it on low heat. Avoid using harsh cleansers or utensils that could scratch the the seasoning layer. Soap isn’t actually necessary once you think about the high temperatures of stovetop cooking. A small amount of dish soap dissolves excess grease from the pan, so you can wipe it off. The hardened, gathered seasoning layer isn’t affected.
Preserve the Seasoning
Wipe the inside of the dry pan with cooking fat or oil to a paper towel. Do this after each use to carry on the seasoning.