How to Use, Store and Care for your Enameled Cast Iron Cookware
If there’s something that only people who love to cook will understand, it’s the pleasure that it gives you to present your food in an elegant and classy manner. That’s exactly what enameled cast iron cookware is for. You can simply place your dish or stew in the oven, cook it up then take it out of the oven and place it right in the table without having to move your food to another plate. But the truth is enameled cast iron has some care requirements that you should follow closely in order to avoid your pots and pans to last much less than they should. Keep reading and find out how to use, store and care for enameled cast iron cookware.
Benefits of using enameled cast iron pots, skillets and pans
Probably the most noticeable benefit of using enameled cast iron is that it’s the easiest of all materials to clean thanks to its coating that resists all sticking, burning or crusting on the surface. Unlike traditional cast iron, enameled cast iron doesn’t require any seasoning, so you don’t have to worry about maintenance. Enameled cast iron doesn’t absorb or interact with certain ingredients such as tomatoes or acid juices.
Enameled cast iron can last a lot of years and is worn properly, it can withstand high temperatures so you can use it for many different recipes and techniques. The fact that it conducts and holds heat so well makes this material somewhat eco-friendly. Last but not least, enameled cast iron resists rust.
How to use enameled cast iron properly
Our first recommendation for you is that you bring it to a heat gradually and try to use it exclusively at low or medium temperatures. Only use high heat on this type of cookware to boil water or reduce sauces, and that is after you’ve covered the surface with oil or butter. If you try to boil something in your pan or pot without adding a fat to melt you can seriously harm the enamel coating. Enameled cast iron cookware is safe to use on the stove-top and in the oven.
Cleaning and caring for your cast iron properly
Even though any piece of enameled cast iron is completely dishwasher safe, you might want to wait a bit until all the heat has vanished from the utensils. If you place a pot that’s too hot under cold water it can crack the enamel and ruin the cookware. To clean properly, fill the whole pan or pot with warm water and let it soak for 15 to 20 minutes. Then, you can use a soft cleaning sponge or brush, avoiding anything made of steel wool as well as harsh detergents and abrasive cleaners.
For extra cleaning, you might want to apply a 3-to-1 mix of baking soda and water. Cover up the entire surface of the pan and leave it overnight. The next step is to simply add hot water and you’ll notice how all bits and residues come right off easily.
As some extra, handy tips, avoid using metal utensils at all cost since they can scratch the enamel. Instead go for silicone, wood, nylon or heat-resistant plastic utensils. And, lastly, avoid dropping your enameled cast iron cookware to the floor or banging it against stuff!