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another cast iron question for you cast iron experts

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
I recently picked up a bargain Cast Iron dutch oven from Calphalon. ($129 for $29).

All the cast iron I've used in the past were smooth inside. This one is fairly rough inside.

I've been continuing to season it and also for now cooking only fatty things in it, but I'm wondering if smoother would be more non-stick, or rough. Should I ask my husband to grind it smooth, or keep it with the rough, pitted surface for better non-stick performance.

Which would be more non-stick? :confused: I'm getting contradictory opinions.
post #2 of 8
Before you buy cast iron, you should check the finish. Smoother is better, but not totally smooth.

Still, even rough cast iron will improve with age and proper care. Keep going with it avoiding foods notorious for sticking for the time being.

I've got a cheap TexSport 10" dutch oven in cast iron that was one of my first, before I knew better. It's pretty rough but still releases respectably.

Phil
post #3 of 8
I have a calphalon grilling skillet, and a lodge normal skillet. The Calphalon is noticeably smoother, but the lodge seems to be the better performer. I'd imagine that rough is ok, as it may allow better penetration of the oils. Someone please correct me if I'm wrong, but because it's not so much the smoothness of the iron that makes it non-stick (like normal non-stick) but the barrier of oil that builds up, surface texture shouldn't be a huge factor.
post #4 of 8
The non stick quality of well seasoned cast iron comes from a buildup of carbon. hence why you don't wash them like other cook wear.
"Ye can lead a man up to the university, but ye can't make him think."

Finley Peter Dunne
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"Ye can lead a man up to the university, but ye can't make him think."

Finley Peter Dunne
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post #5 of 8
I was always under the impression that it was oil, hence why you never use soaps on them, but can scape them clean. Or do you mean that the oil carbonizes?
post #6 of 8
Sorry, I should have clarified that but yes, the carbon must come from somewhere and it is from the oil but it is not a buildup of oil that you want but rather the carbon film that forms from the oil or you would have a putrid coating....ewwww!
"Ye can lead a man up to the university, but ye can't make him think."

Finley Peter Dunne
Reply
"Ye can lead a man up to the university, but ye can't make him think."

Finley Peter Dunne
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post #7 of 8
Inexpensive cast iron is often rough inside. I take a grinding wheel, and smooth it out. Using progressively finer grit wheels, it does not take long to make the interior smooth.
When it is smooth, use the normal procedure for seasoning.
post #8 of 8
I's stick with the quality Lodge lines of cast iron pots and pans, they also have lines that come pre-seasoned. Lodge knows more about pure cast iron cookware than anyone, unless you want enamel coated La Creuset cast iron.

And if you ever get an induction cooktop, nothing beats cast iron, although All-Clad, Demeyere, and other companies make very magnetic stainless that is great for induction and anything else.

Greg
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