“Seasoning” your cast iron stove, skillet, etc. is fat or oil baked into the iron. This creates a natural non-stick coating. The more you use your pan, the more seasoned it will become.
Wash with Soap or Detergent (only once)
When you purchase your Campmaster cast iron stove, skillet, etc. you can wash it with warm water and detergent to remove dust and the protective non-toxic wax coating it is treated with, but do not do this again unless you are going to re-season it. Thereafter, avoid harsh detergents and scouring pads because they can remove the tough non-stick seasoning coating you are trying so hard to achieve. And never put your cast iron in the dishwasher.
How to Season Your Pan
Preheat an oven to 150°C. Place a layer of foil on the bottom rack of your oven and the cast iron item on the top rack. Heat the pan for 10 minutes to dry it completely and remove. Using a lint-free cloth or paper towel, coat the pan with about 1 tablespoon of lard, pork fat or vegetable oil. (Note vegetable oil creates a slightly sticky coating). Place the pan back in the oven for another 10 minutes. Remove and pour out any excess fat. Turn the pan upside down and return it to the top rack of the oven (position it over the foil to catch any drips). Bake for 1 hour, turn off the oven, and let the pan cool in the oven. Repeat this process often to maintain and intensify your pan’s seasoning. For the first seasoning you should repeat this process a further 2-3 times before cooking it.
Cooking with Your Cast Iron
Campmaster cast iron cookware is great for everything from pan-searing pork chops to baking cornbread. With new cookware, we recommend starting off with foods with a high fat content (like bacon) to help with the seasoning process and solidify the non-stick surface.
Keep it Clean
Wash your pan while still warm with hot water and use a sponge or stiff non-metal brush to remove cooking residue. To remove tough bits of stuck-on food, pour a cup of coarse salt into the still-warm cookware. Scrub the pan with the salt. Pour out the salt and rinse the pan with hot water. We do not recommend letting your cast iron soak.
Dry it Completely
Any moisture left on your cast iron may cause rust to develop. So, after rinsing, dry it well and place it on the stove-top over low heat or in the oven for a few minutes, then use a cloth or paper towel to rub it with a little lard, pork fat, or vegetable oil. Heat for 5 to 10 minutes more, remove from the heat and allow to cool. Wipe with another cloth or paper towel to remove any excess grease.
Store it Carefully
Keep your cast iron cookware in a dry place with the lids off to avoid rusting. If rust appears, scour your pan with steel wool to remove the rust and re-season the pan from the beginning. Note: never store food in cast iron. Acids in food can break down the seasoned surface.
If you follow these simple steps, you will enjoy many years of happy cooking with your Campmaster cast iron cookware.