11-20-2017, 08:49 AM
#21
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(11-20-2017, 06:52 AM)ShadowsDad Wrote: Biggrin   Good for you! Let us know how you like it.

When you season it look for the color change that tells you the bottom is seasoned. It will very noticeable. Keep going after you start to see it. If you use the salt, oil, and potato peel method you want the peels very dark and crispy, then you know it's well seasoned. It will smoke a lot so either do it under a vented hood or outside if you have that capability. I find the smoke generated, at least with flax seed oil, to be choking and intolerable.

There are other ways to season that are less smoky, but the method Matfer wants you to use works nicely and is quite foolproof. When mine needs a touchup I just get the dry pan up to sizzling temp' on the stovetop. Then when it's hot enough I just put a 1/2 tsp (approx') in the pan and wipe it out and spread it with a paper towel. The coating must be microscopic for this to work. If it's visible and runny that's far too much oil. Then I let it cool and bring it up to temp' again to make sure all of the oil has polymerized. The wet sheen from the oil film will be seen to become matte. When the pan is cool, the fingers run over the pan will be dry.

If it does need "washing" I never use anything more aggressive than a paper towel and warm water. It's been said that detergent can be used but I've never tested that. Warm water and a paper towel has never failed me yet. I only use that when something has oozed juices that adhered and burned on. Most times it just gets wiped (only if required) and put back on the stovetop.
The only problem I've encountered was scrubbing enough to remove the wax, under hot running water. Either I don't remove the entire coating, or the steel rusts before I dry it up.
The salt+potato peels+oil works great, except for one time that the salt+peels stuck like hell to the pan for unknown reason.
What do you do about the handle? Do you coat it with oil as well? I didn't bother scrubbing it, and after one time using the pan in the oven it really discolored (I don't think it rusted or anything).

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 11-20-2017, 09:25 AM
#22
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The one time I heated the pan before wiping it removed all of the seasoning. Maybe I got it too hot? I dunno, I never repeated it.

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 11-20-2017, 09:31 AM
#23
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I bought 3 De Buyer Mineral B carbon steel pans, 24cm/28cm/32cm and also gave my father 2 De Buyer Carbon steel pans as a present.

I helped my father seasoning his pans and they work perfect for him. He makes egg and bacon 365 days a year each morning, so for him the carbon steel pans are perfect.

I also gave him a Mauviel 5-ply pan for when using wine as a deglaze when searing meat.

I only use my De Buyer Carbon steel pans for omelettes and delicate fish now. Since I always deglaze with wine and vinegar, carbon steel pans are not the optimal thing for searing meat for my preferences.
I ended up buying 2 Demeyere 7-ply Pawson pans for all my meat searing.

If you don’t deglaze in wine/vinegar, carbon steel pans are really nice all-purpose pans. But for me they are great Select-purpose pans, but not for everything.

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 11-21-2017, 03:55 AM
#24
  • Rufus
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Thanks for the advice guys.  Seeing that seasoning the pan will create a lot of smoke and my smoke detectors are wired into the local fire station, I think I should do the seasoning on my gas grill.  Is it advisable to do this?

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 11-21-2017, 06:23 AM
#25
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As long as you can get it hot enough I don't see why it won't work. You might need to remove the grates to get the pan close enough to the burner.

Or don't use the smoke generating salt, oil, and potato skin method and go straight to heating the pan and give it the microscopic film of oil method. It'll still produce smoke but not in large quantities. If you do that, it might need to be done twice. You'll know when you use it. It can always be seasoned again if needed.

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 12-01-2017, 03:43 PM
#26
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Rufus, how dd you make out?

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 12-01-2017, 07:01 PM
#27
  • Rufus
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(12-01-2017, 03:43 PM)ShadowsDad Wrote: Rufus, how dd you make out?

Smoke everywhere, so had to cut it short. I will try to do it on the Weber grill outside.

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 02-05-2018, 12:35 PM
#28
  • Rufus
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(12-01-2017, 07:01 PM)Rufus Wrote:
(12-01-2017, 03:43 PM)ShadowsDad Wrote: Rufus, how dd you make out?

Smoke everywhere, so had to cut it short. I will try to do it on the Weber grill outside.

Successfully seasoned the pan a while back and have been using it. At first I didn’t think I’d seasoned it properly as it didn’t look quite like the pans I’d seen in several videos. Nevertheless, I decided to give it a try and what a revelation. It worked flawlessly: not a hint of sticking and the heat distribution was even across the pan. I’ve used several non-stick pans from the ‘big name brands’, but not one of them performed anywhere near as well as the MB. In a word carbon steel is OUTSTANDING.

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 02-05-2018, 02:23 PM
#29
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Glad you're liking it so far!

It's the chefs secret weapon! Just don't cooks sauces or anything else "wet" in it and it'll stay seasoned. You'll have a few setbacks as you learn what can and can't be done with them, but that's to be expected. When rinsing it, no hot pan and cold water. That'll strip the pan in a heartbeat. But cold pan, warm water and a paper towel is fine. When I cook things that exude that's how I get rid of the exuded stuff. Hot pan and spatula works great for some exuded stuff. The pan releases the sticky stuff to the spatula. It's just experience.

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 02-07-2018, 02:32 AM
#30
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I’m still loving my De Buyer Mineral B Carbon Steel pans.
Only issue I have is that I have to make sure I don’t deglaze in wine or vinegar or add tomato to the pans to ensure the seasoning is not harmed.

Other than that, these pans are simply amazing.

I preferably use my De Buyer 28cm and 24cm frying pans for meat and eggs. Two areas where these pans excel to almost perfection.

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 02-25-2018, 03:58 PM
#31
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An attempt to add life, I have a few pieces of Staub, which I really like better than the Lodge I owned in the past. Mainly the fact Staub is enameled and that makes cleaning soooooo simple. Has a non-stick interior finish which is real nice.

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 03-18-2018, 09:21 AM
#32
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I took all my cast iron pans (and pot) and soaked them in a lye bath for two days.  I then sanded them down with an orbital sander at 80-220 grit until it showed a reflection.  A couple of rounds in the oven with grapeseed oil and they came out brown/black with the smoothest surface I have ever used in a pan.  The seasoning is harder to stick than without the sanding and is much thinner, but makes for better cleaning, no flaking, and absolutely great cooking.

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 03-26-2018, 05:04 PM
#33
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I found a 12" lodge cast iron pan at Target for $16.00.  I promptly bought it, gave it a lye bath (easy to do when you own a soap company), sanded it down to a mirror finish with an orbital sander, and then seasoned it.  Less than half the cost of a carbon steel pan, has a top, and mirror smooth.  It works GREAT!

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 03-26-2018, 05:12 PM
#34
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I like cast iron a bit better. I have new and vintage skillets. Differences are minimal IMO.

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 04-01-2018, 02:56 PM
#35
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(03-26-2018, 05:12 PM)lloydrm Wrote: I like cast iron a bit better. I have new and vintage skillets. Differences are minimal IMO.

Not for crêpes. For crêpes carbon steel wins hands down.

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 04-23-2018, 07:39 AM
#36
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The other day I made a mistake and cooked something in the CS pan that had too much water content for too long a period of time and "bubbled up" some of the seasoning. So I yad to strip the rest of the pan of it's seasoning. I tried and couldn't strip it. I tried boiling detergent water in it, scrubbing afterward and was unsuccessful. So I wound up just smoothing out the areas with and without seasoning with a scotch brite pad and reseasoned the stripped areas. It's wonderfully non-stick once again.

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 04-24-2018, 03:37 PM
#37
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(04-23-2018, 07:39 AM)ShadowsDad Wrote: The other day I made a mistake and cooked something in the CS pan that had too much water content for too long a period of time and "bubbled up" some of the seasoning. So I yad to strip the rest of the pan of it's seasoning. I tried and couldn't strip it. I tried boiling detergent water in it, scrubbing afterward and was unsuccessful. So I wound up just smoothing out the areas with and without seasoning with a scotch brite pad and reseasoned the stripped areas. It's wonderfully non-stick once again.


I’m still in and out with my De Buyer Mineral B carbon steel pans.
One minute I love them, the next I hate them.

An example. Have used my De Buyer Mineral B 28cm frying pan 50-60 times building up the seasoning to almost perfection.

Have heard from sources you can actually use a bit of balsamico without harming the seasoning once it’s solid and have 30+ uses under the belt.

Prepared pan chops in my pan searing them to get ready for the oven. Gave a perfect sear. Removed them from the pan. Praising the pan.

Then added the mushrooms and veggies to the pan and added two tablespoons of tomato paste (acid) to the mix. Then added half a cup of red wine and ½ liter cream to the mix.
Within 3-4 minutes the acid in the wine removed 25% of the seasoning in the pan.

This is why I can’t accept carbon steel pans.
I have to consider what I use instead of free thinking making my food.

It prevents me from making inspiring food, because I have to avoid acids, which I love in my food.

Food making for me is based on inspiration and free flowing cooking.

Having to stop and think: ‘Wait a minute, can I use a table spoon balsamico in this or half glass of red wine in that ?!? or will that harm the seasoning in my carbon steel pan ?!?’

Carbon steel pans are preventing me from making inspiring food rather than inspiring me to make food !

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 04-24-2018, 09:30 PM
#38
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That was a clear case for a SS pan. Or it would have been for me. Balsamic wouldn't be the problem but all of the other high water content items along with the balsamic would be. CS pans are not for making sauces or anything close to that. I have a larger CS pan that I use for stir frying and if I make something requiring a sauce I just understand that it will require reseasoning. I reseason that pan quite often because it works so much better than a wok on my western style rangetop.

CS pans are for frying, period, if one wants to maintain the seasoning anyway. I got caught because what I was frying had hidden water in it that wasn't gone immediately once the item hit the pan. Once I was into it I was committed, realized my error and I was screwed because it was just too late; the damage had been done. That happened much more often when I was new to them, not so much anymore. I thought I was immune, but clearly I wasn't. The fix was an easy one though. While most of the pan has a thick seasoning, the damaged seasoning is perfectly non-stick today and was corrected shortly after the damage occurred, but is clearly visible as being recently reseasoned. If I cared about looks it might bother me, but I care more about performance. The newly seasoned areas are actually a badge of honor since I bounced it back so soon and easily. It took me longer to try to remove all of the seasoning than it would have had I just reseasoned from the first.

Live and learn. If I had the experience with CS pans as I do with CI pans it would have been totally unworthy of mention. Now I know how tough the heavily seasoned areas are and won't try to remove all of the season the next time I screw up. Hopefully the reseasoned areas will have time to catch up to the other areas and it'll never happen again... with luck and me not making that mistake again it'll happen. It wasn't the pan, it was my error entirely.

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 04-25-2018, 01:24 AM
#39
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(04-24-2018, 09:30 PM)ShadowsDad Wrote: That was a clear case for a SS pan. Or it would have been for me. Balsamic wouldn't be the problem but all of the other high water content items along with the balsamic would be. CS pans are not for making sauces or anything close to that. I have a larger CS pan that I use for stir frying and if I make something requiring a sauce I just understand that it will require reseasoning. I reseason that pan quite often because it works so much better than a wok on my western style rangetop.

CS pans are for frying, period, if one wants to maintain the seasoning anyway. I got caught because what I was frying had hidden water in it that wasn't gone immediately once the item hit the pan. Once I was into it I was committed, realized my error and I was screwed because it was just too late; the damage had been done. That happened much more often when I was new to them, not so much anymore. I thought I was immune, but clearly I wasn't. The fix was an easy one though. While most of the pan has a thick seasoning, the damaged seasoning is perfectly non-stick today and was corrected shortly after the damage occurred, but is clearly visible as being recently reseasoned. If I cared about looks it might bother me, but I care more about performance. The newly seasoned areas are actually a badge of honor since I bounced it back so soon and easily. It took me longer to try to remove all of the seasoning than it would have had I just reseasoned from the first.

Live and learn. If I had the experience with CS pans as I do with CI pans it would have been totally unworthy of mention. Now I know how tough the heavily seasoned areas are and won't try to remove all of the season the next time I screw up. Hopefully the reseasoned areas will have time to catch up to the other areas and it'll never happen again... with luck and me not making that mistake again it'll happen. It wasn't the pan, it was my error entirely.


Problem with your statement “CS pans are for frying if one wants to maintain the seasoning” is that I always deglaze my pan with either red wine, white wine, dark beer or balsamico after searing a steak to get all the wonderful glaze juices from the bottom of the pan on top of the meat, which gives the meat the extra flavour.

As said CS pans are not made for me.

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 04-25-2018, 02:15 AM
#40
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(01-22-2017, 06:57 PM)asiliski Wrote: I have a nice set of lodge cast iron.  Does anyone use carbon steel?  I know it is very similar and lighter.  What do you guys prefer?

I have used steel pans and do not recommend them for the average home cook. Restaurants like them because its a different environment with generally much hotter eyes. I've warped two on an induction stove at the 6 out of 10 setting on an induction stove. Lighter than cast iron matters in a restaurant where chefs are constantly moving pans and often throw pans around during busy periods.

If you go cast iron, there are four options:

- Lodge is the current big name option. Not nearly as good as the stuff of prior years. Uneven, sharp edges, and a cooking surface that is not machined.
- Staub/Le Creuset are enameled cast iron. Pricey but because they are enameled they do not need seasoning. They nearly any dish and I have frying pans, dutch ovens, griddles/grills and others. Works very well, simple to maintain, AND the only DISHWASHER SAFE item on the list.
- Go to eBay and yard sales to buy vintage cast iron, which are much better than lodge. Not a lot of choice and more expensive than...
- Many new boutique makers of cast have emerged. These are of very high quality, better than vintage, beautiful cooking surfaces, generally lighter in weight. Smithey Ironware, Butter Pat, Borough Furnace, Finex, Field, Stargazer are just a few of many more. Very nice stuff. Do your research. Staub and boutique iron rate highly on The Kitchn, Serious Eats, etc. ATK is biased towards lower cost stuff.

My collection is mostly All Clad Copper Core, Staub and a few of the boutique cast irons (3) and Mauviel copper specialty pans (2). Along with a huge supply of professional half and quarter sheet pans. This mix is perfect for the typical and advanced home chef. All the Lodge and Matfer was given away a long time ago.

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