a Chef’s Kitchen Not complete without a cast iron skillet. Made of an iron-carbon alloy, these heavy-duty pans are an essential and versatile tool for use on the grill, on the stove, or even over a campfire. Chefs love cast iron because the durable material holds heat better than stainless steel, and the cooking surface improves over time as it is used and re-flavored. While cooking, food leaves behind a natural coating on the pan that provides flavor as well as a reliable non-stick surface for simmering, roasting, stewing, baking, and frying just about anything.
Clean your fryer
Cast iron pans are tough, but you still need to take care of them. The cleaning ritual may seem intimidating to beginners, but the maintenance is actually quite simple. Since water causes rust on cast iron, the first rule to remember is to never soak the pan. However, you can hand wash it with a small amount of soap and use a scrubber to remove stuck food bits, according to the fryer manufacturer. hostel. Once you are done scrubbing, dry the pan immediately with a lint-free cloth.
Seasoning your fryer
To keep the nonstick coating in shape, you will need to season the pan. Add a thin, even layer of cooking oil On its surface, put it upside down in a 500-degree oven for an hour. Remove and let cool and the pan will be ready for the next use.
Cast iron skillets come in many different varieties. Below, we’ve rounded up the best types for different uses, from cooking for the public to Preparing a meal in the countryside.
Best cast iron skillets
1. Best Overall: Victoria 12-inch Cast Iron Skillet
Not often the best all-around option is the same as the best wallet-friendly pick, but that’s certainly the case with this powerful fryer under $30. Although available in multiple sizes, 12 inches is the standard—and at that size, it fits nearly every burner. This one’s pre-seasoned with a coating of 100 percent non-GMO flaxseed oil, so it’s ready to cook bacon, frittatas, or cobblers right out of the box. The long handle makes it easy to use, and two drip holes on either side make draining liquids easy.
2. Best Splurge: Le Creuset Signature Frying Pan
Cooking utensils can be practical And Handsome, my Le Creuset articles earned high marks for aesthetics. Made in France, these fancy pans feature a non-stick, break-resistant finish on the cooking side, so you don’t have to season them for the first time use (although it doesn’t hurt to add a little oil before the first frying). The enamel side comes in multiple colors to match any kitchen, and sizes range from six to 12 inches. It is also dishwasher safe and for use with metal utensils.
3. Best for Big Meals: Bayou Classic 20″ Cast Iron Frying Pan
When you’re cooking for an entire house, get that massive pan fry pan. Due to its large size, it is ideal for preparing large quantities, and you can also use it on an outdoor propane stove or fire. At 23 pounds empty, it’s definitely bulky, but handles on either side help you maneuver it (although you may need to enlist some help to move it when it’s full of food). It comes pre-scented, although the manufacturer recommends seasoning it yourself for best results.
4. Best for camping: Camp Chef’s 7-inch mini frying pans
Just because you sleep in a tent, doesn’t mean your meals can’t be delicious. These seven-inch pans (sold in pairs) are smaller than average, which makes them easy to handle and clean when you’re away from the kitchen. Each one has just enough room to saute veggies for stovetop tacos or cook an entire personal pizza. Plus it’s lighter than other frying pans, so you can pack one in your pack for a short trip to the backcountry.
5. Best Deep Dish: Lodge Black Look Triple Cast Iron Frying Pan
For soups and slow roasting, you will need a skillet with higher sides and a lid. Some might call it a pot, but Lodge’s deep frying pan is 4.5 inches deep and holds up to 4 quarts of savory goodness. The lid features an easy-to-grip aluminum handle, and the pan has long and short handles on both sides for maximum stability in the load. This was a three-spice one, although Lodge recommends applying a thin layer of cooking oil to the surface before each use.
6. Best size-to-weight ratio: Stargazer 10.5-inch cast iron skillet
The Stargazer fryer creator worked through 21 prototypes before finishing his design. Each of this skillet is poured, shaped, smoothed, and seasoned in the US, and the brand’s bronze color comes from the spice, not the metal: Stargazer uses a blend of non-GMO canola, grape seed, and sunflower oils (you can also order an unusual frying pan). The flared rim allows for drip-free pouring, the smooth surface makes it easy to clean, and at 5.2 pounds for a 10.5-inch pan, it’s the lightest quality frying pan out there.
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