I love my cast iron. I do like the Lodge brand (it's what I have), but I've found that the Lodge pre-seasoning hasn't been very good as a general rule. I have one of those Lodge flippable griddles (probably the same one as yours) and I am planning to completely start over with the seasoning just as soon as I have time to get the Lodge seasoning off.
I like the idea of my griddle/grill pan, but I've found that food always sticks severely to the grill side, making it near-impossible to clean. I've also found that the seasoning on whatever side is down, facing the flames of my gas stove, gets marred. I keep patching it up (putting on oil and putting it in the oven to season), but, I think it's never going to work right until I get all the original Lodge seasoning off and start over, from scratch, with the seasoning.
It sounds like yours worked really well last night, so maybe it has a good pre-seasoned surface. It will get even better with time. After a while, as the seasoning improves, things will stick less and less and, eventually, you'll find that you can even fry eggs on it with just a very light coating of oil. Hope your tuna steaks turn out well tonight!
Thank you all so far on the tips - I'll be buying some coconut oil today, and I think I'll go a little lower on the temperature to medium! Tonight's menu: tuna steaks!
The fruit came out great, and I have to laugh at myself a bit for thinking a peach could "ruin" such a solid surface! I also did a rib eye that seared beautifully, though it was still quite rare (even after throwing it in the oven). Has anyone tried the diner trick of flipping a stainless steel bowl over the food to trap the heat in?
To the person asking about the smoke: everything I read online added "open a window and turn on the fan during preheating" as part of the setup, so it seems to be standard.
I cook in cast iron all the time, although I don't have the grill/griddle like yours. I think you should be okay using it for fruit, but even though it's pre-seasoned, my experience with pre-seasoned Lodge cast iron is that you still need to coat it with oil the first few times before using it. That said, the most important thing to remember about cast iron is to never, never, ever wash it with soap and water - just use hot water and a scrubbie to remove the food residue - I then stick it in a heated oven or on top of the stove and turn a burner on for a few minutes so it will dry fast (it's iron, it will rust if left wet) and after it cools, you can coat it again with some oil (I use coconut oil). Cared for properly, your cast iron will last forever and become better over time.
i love cast iron. I brush a small amount of oil on the surface especially if grilling very lean meats. (chicken, etc)
Let it get to temperature, then get started!!! Keep the temp at a medium.
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I've only cooked on a cast iron grill once (and it was used so it was already pretty seasoned) so I don't think I'll be a whole lot of help. BUT I do think you'll be able to use it to grill peaches and veggies on it now. I don't see how it would harm the grill. One thing I did notice when I used mine, is that it gets really hot, relatively quickly-so watch out for that. Also, mine got really smokey when I used it (to cook steak for my ex-bf and I). I don't know of they're all like that or if i just didn't have very good ventilation in my college apt.
This week there has been an article featured on SparkPeople that lists the many healthy things one can grill this summer, like tofu, zucchini, peaches (yum!), etc.
This just so happened to coincide with my birthday, during which I got a pre-seasoned Lodge grill/griddle (flippable) that covers 2 burners on the stove top. I'm so excited! I am a complete newbie to cast iron, and am wondering if things like those grilled zucchini and peaches would be appropriate on this new surface, or if the sugar in fruit would ruin it, or if I should at least build up more of a seasoning, or if these cast iron grills are SO different from an outside charcoal grill that I need to not even consider it!
Can anyone give me some good knowledge on cooking with cast iron? Looking online I have a good idea how to clean and maintain it, but I'm wondering what my limitations are when it comes to actually cooking.
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