You may have noticed that my cooking recipe shots always include a cast iron skillet. Yep, I grew up with them, in fact most of the ones I have were handed down from my grandmother. The term skillet does not specifically apply to cast iron but instead describes a pan with slanted sides. Still, I always refer to my cast iron as a skillet because it makes me feel like I’m about to do something really bad ass. “I’m going to throw this in the skillet”- it just makes food more exciting don’t you think?
I always assumed that if cast iron skillets were good enough for my grandmother, and many generations before her, then they certainly must be better than the non-stick cookware that was all the rage for quite some time. Turned out that was a pretty good call. Now that we know that non-stick cookware is made with PFOA’s that emit carcinogenic fumes, cast iron is once again the best choice for non-stick cooking. In fact the humble skillet is so versatile, affordable and easy to care for that it’s really the only pan you may ever need.
1. Multi-Functional: Cast iron can be used both on the stove top and in the oven. It’s also able to withstand very high heat cooking which makes it a great stand in for high heat grilling.
2. Added Health Benefits& Safety: A properly seasoned cast iron skillet requires less oil to be used when cooking which means less oil being absorbed into your food. It also fortifies your food with iron which boosts energy levels as well as the immune system. Cast iron cookware is also the best replacement for both non-stick cookware, which emits toxic PFOA fumes while cooking, and aluminum cookware.
3. Perfect Cooking: Browning food, even heat distribution and searing are all features of you can take advantage of when cooking in cast iron.
4. Sturdy and Affordable: cast iron lasts forever so handing the skillets down through the family or picking up a great deal at a yard sale is easy to do. Even when purchased new, cast iron skillets are almost always more affordable then their fancy counterparts. Since cast iron does not scratch you can also make the healthier choice of using stainless steel cooking utensils over plastic.
5. Easy to Clean: A well-seasoned skillet is a breeze to clean up- fill your dirty skillet with water and bring to a boil on the stovetop. Even the most stubborn burned on food will easily wipe free with a cooking utensil. A little salt can be added if an additional abrasive is needed. Then rinse with clean water and return to the hot stove for a few moments to evaporate off any excess liquid and you’re done!