For generations, cast iron cookware hold a special place in the heart of many due to its tremendous advantages.
With its ability to hold heat for a longer duration, it becomes economical and able to cook food evenly.
It also has been approved as one of the most durable and versatile cooking equipment. You can cook about anything using the pot; from meat, vegetables, cornbread to even cake.
As the name suggests, it is made of a molten hot alloy that is later poured into molds or cast. A cast iron pot can last generations as long as it is well taken care of.
This is not an easy task because, for ages, it has incited a great debate revolving around its care and maintenance.
Cleaning a Newly Purchased Cast Iron Pot
When cleaning a newly purchased cast iron pot, it is okay to feel the need to wash it thoroughly whether it's brand new or it's a used item.
At this time, you are allowed to wash the pot with mild soapy water. Avoid harsh soap and use of scouring pads.
Dry the pan using a high flame for a few minutes. This is the best way to dry a pan, otherwise, you can dry it using a dry towel.
Make sure to use a dedicated towel because they might all turn black. The importance of drying the pot is to prevent rusting.
Wait for the pot to cool for a bit and then pour some oil into it. Rub it using a paper towel; This is called seasoning- creating a non-stick surface on the pot.
Cleaning an After-Cooking Cast Iron Pot
Users must take this precautions; Cast iron pot is not a set-aside-to-soak utensil and avoids boiling water into the pot.
These two may accelerate rusting of the pot. Rinse the pot with warm water immediately after cooking in order to acquire better results.
If need be, scrub burned-on food with a mild abrasive, for example, coarse salt. Dry the pan and season it.
Cleaning an Old Rusty Cast Iron Pot
Cast iron pots get better with time as long as you are consistently cooking with it. If you have stayed for a long period of time without using it, chances are that you will find it rusty.
To clean such a pot, you will need coarse salt, potato, and oil. The work might be messy, and you may need to take it outside the house or cover the table with a newspaper in order to enhance easy clean up.
- Add about half a cup of coarse salt into the pan.
- Cut the potato into two halves such that one-half will fit the palm of your hand. Place the cut side down and scrub the pan. The potato is moist enough to help the salt work off the rust.
- Make circular movements around the pan while exerting a good amount of pressure. The salt may become dirty quickly depending on the nature of the pot.
- Change the salt as necessary and rinse it while clean.
- Dry it and later season.
As discussed above, cast iron pots require keen maintenance, failure to which will lead to a sticky rusty surface no matter how many times you use it to cook.
Steps to follow while cleaning the pot are easy but then important. A seasoned cast iron pot is easy to maintain, whereas to attain that smooth shiny surface requires a handful of work.