Don’t Cast Me Aside…

Look at what we found at Goodwill…

Skillet - Before

Not only is it a cast iron skillet, but it is a Lodge cast iron skillet!  Lodge has been making cast iron products since 1896.  It gets even better as the $2.52 price tag was  50% off. So, we got this Lodge 8 inch skillet for a grand total of $1.26 and it retails at Lodge for $17.95!!!  This skillet is in definite need of  2BC – 2 Bees Care.

Have you ever used cast iron when you cook?  An old skillet is the best for cooking with even heat, and is pretty much a staple in every Southern kitchen.  Most people I know inherit their cast iron, considered heirlooms, from parents or grandparents.  I have a couple myself.

A lot of people shy away from using cast iron because they think it takes special care.  In truth, cast iron pieces just need the right kind of care.  Properly seasoned, a cast iron skillet will last a lifetime(s) and will be just like a non-stick pan.  More on seasoning later. Right now this skillet is rusty and requires some cleaning.

First, I washed our skillet in very hot soapy water.  Don’t be alarmed.  Normally you would not use soap, but it’s okay as I am reviving and seasoning it.

What you need for cleaning your cast iron skillet:

  • Coarse Sea Salt
  • Canola Oil
  • Plastic pot scrubber. I did not have the scrubber so, I used the red mesh bag from the oranges I bought at the grocery.

Cast iron cleaning needs

Measurements do not need to be exact. For this pan I used about 2 tablespoons of sea salt.

And poured about 1 tablespoon of canola oil.

Using canola Oil to revive cast iron

 Then, you just start scrubbing the messy and rusty parts until you achieve a clean result. It takes just a few minutes.

Reviving a cast iron skillet

You repeat the same method on the bottom and sides.

Reviving a cast iron skillet

Making sure to really scrub the rusty spots. Reviving a cast iron skillet

 With a clean cotton cloth or paper towels, begin wiping all of the salt and oil off of your skillet.

Wipe off excess oil and sea salt when reviving cast iron

This next step is the “seasoning” part of insuring that your skillet will work at its best potential. What is seasoning and why does the pan need it?  Seasoning is vegetable oil baked onto the cast iron at a high temperature.  The seasoning creates the natural, non-stick pan effect. There is no chemical coating on cast ironware – thats why they last for generations.

What you need to season your cast iron skillet:

  • Crisco shortening
  • Paper towels
  • Oven – preheated to 400 degrees
  • Aluminum foil

Let the seasoning begin

Put a generous tablespoon of Crisco into the skillet. Using paper towels, start rubbing the shortening all over your pan.

Crisco for Seasoning your cast iron

Wipe off excess.

reviving your cast iron skillet

In a 400 degree oven:  Place a sheet of aluminum foil on the bottom rack.  Place your skillet, upside down, on the middle rack and bake for one hour.  Turn your oven off, leaving skillet in the oven. Let completely cool.

Voila!!!  Our skillet has been returned to its former, full beauty!  I hope that you are inspired to rescue a cast off…a cast iron skillet.

Rust Gone

 

Restored cast iron

Cast Iron Care:

  • Don’t leave or soak in water
  • Do not use soaps or cleansers – ever.  The soap removes the seasoning. As a clean-freak myself I know that this may seem gross.  Trust me – very safe. Use hot water and then use coarse sea salt to scrub out the skillet.  Think of the salt as a saline solution cleanser.
  • If no soap is just too scary for you, dry and oil immediately.  To insure dryness and to avoid rusting, place in a 400 degree oven, upside down for 20 minutes and then turn oven off.  Leave skillet in oven until cool.
  • Never put in the dishwasher
  • Never use metal scouring pads

Comments

  1. Shenna says

    Love your tips on reviving old cast off cast iron skillets. We have several that we bought at a thrift store in OKlahoma years ago. We cleaned them up and they are used frequently. You girls rock!!!

    • 2 Bees in a Pod says

      Thanks Shenna! That’s great – so glad that you too have a passion for saving cast iron.

      We are just writing about things we love and do in our everyday lives. Spread the word to your family and friends. We would love more followers :)

  2. Jill Tahmooressi says

    I for years have swung down the back alley of Goodwill to drop off my discards never thinking about going in the front door myself. Now I am hooked on the idea and can’t wait to come across my own cast iron find that I can restore. Your tip of the day brought back flash memories of my Mom cooking eggs in one. Now I’m on a mission thanks to you girls. What a treat these ideas are. Thank you.

    • 2 Bees in a Pod says

      Well Jill-
      We are thrilled that we have inspired you to delve into the world of thrifting. It is a lot of fun and you will be surprised at the great items you will find. Caution: it is addicting :)
      I’m glad you have wonderful memories of you mother using her cast iron skillet. Memories of cooking and being in the kitchen fill my heart.
      Happy hunting!!

  3. Barbara says

    Thanks for the information! I have a skillet in need of care – I will definitely follow your advice. However, I have a question: When I put the skillet in the oven, do I put Crisco on both the inside and outside of the skillet? Thanks!

    • 2 Bees in a Pod says

      Hey Barbara –
      So glad you found us. Yes, the Crisco is rubbed on the inside and outside of your skillet, being sure to wipe off the excess. Then follow the steps for the oven.
      Let us know how it turns out!
      Vicki and Jennifer

  4. says

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    • 2 Bees in a Pod says

      I’m so glad you found our cast iron skillet maintenance so helpful! Thank you for your positive comments – we appreciate them so much