Enameled cast-iron pots—sometimes called French ovens, made famous by the brand Le Creuset—are excellent at holding temperature, and are easier to maintain than bare cast iron. To avoid scratching the enamel, it’s best to use rubber, wooden, or silicone-coated utensils, blondelle says, like wooden spoons, and birch or silicone-coated whisks.
But what if you’ve already caused a scratch? Take a deep breath and don’t be too hard on yourself—it might not be a scratch at all, kaleokahu says.
What appear to be scratches in the enamel could be marks left by metal tools: streaks of metallic residue, which have caused little or no damage to the underlying enamel. (Enamel is much harder than stainless steel, mikie explains, so metallic residue is far more likely than actual scratches.) Try scrubbing the marks with a gentle cleaning compound such as Bon Ami, Bar Keepers Friend, or Le Creuset’s proprietary compound, kaleokahu suggests; some folks even swear by denture-cleaning tablets.