Look, I use cast iron almost exclusively....and my stuff is not vintage. I cook two to three meals a day in it for the last six years. I didn't inherit heirlooms or bid on Ebay; I bought mine piece by piece. I own LC, Tramontina, Lodge, and el cheapo-beepo from who knows where.
I won't discuss my seasoning routine or my cleaning routine because what I've learned is that there are as many different routines as there are pots and pans. They all work. Just find one that fits your cooking style. I found mine.
Suffice it to say....yes the modern stuff is HEAVY, probably much heavier than those Griswold's you inherited from your grandmother or great aunt Tilly. And yes, when new, the finish on the non-enamel cast iron pots and pans were a little rough at first. .
But here's what you don't know....the more those pans are used; the more they season, and guess what? Those rough surfaces smooth to a slippery deep black finish to which nothing sticks....and to which you can occasionally rinse with a little soap or in which you can cook a tomato or two. Last night I actually deglazed some chicken and onions with orange juice....and the pan was smooth enough to slide a fried egg this morning,
Cook, bake, roast, and fry. That's all you really need to know....and maybe don't ever put a pan away wet.
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