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Old 11-21-2014, 11:47 AM   #1
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Question Cast iron question

Hello all...
New member here. having a bit of an issue.
My job requires me to travel extensively, about 50 weeks out of the year and I pretty much live out of hotels all over the US. As such, my cooking supplies are limited, since I can only have so much stuff on the road to pack around.
I bought a Calphalon reversible griddle/grill that fits over 2 burners. I've cooked with cast iron before, so I didn't really expect any issues.
However, I've noticed that the surface of this griddle is different from the skillets I've used before. They were a smooth texture on the cooking surface, whereas this griddle (and the reverse side) is a bit of a bumpy, rough texture.
Made (or attempted to, LOL) pancakes this morning, actually was trying to make bacon/pancake dippers (with the bacon inside) for myself and my co-workers. But the pancakes only stuck to the griddle and basically came off looking like scrambled pancakes, hahaha.
Since I don't have an oven, all I have is a small toaster oven of my own, and the two-burner stove and microwave that are in the hotel room that I'm currently in, I can't really season it the right way. But I did wash it first, dried it, and applied a thin coat of vegetable oil to it. Cooked the bacon on it this morning and then the "scrambled pancakes".
I am wondering if the rough bumpy texture has something to do with my issues? Does it just need more seasoning? Or can someone recommend a better griddle than this one, maybe one with a smooth surface? I've never seen this cooking surface on cast iron before. I've read reviews on this griddle and others claim that their pancakes turn out great.
Sorry for the long and maybe over-explaining post, but any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks!

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Old 11-21-2014, 11:54 AM   #2
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I wasn't aware that Calphalon made cast iron pieces so I can't speak to that. Are you sure it's cast iron and not some other rather heavy metal? I'm at a bit of a loss to offer any help but there'll surely be someone who will come along and shed clearer light on your dilemma.

Also, many of the newer cast iron pieces are sand cast, which would account for the roughish texture you describe.
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Old 11-21-2014, 12:00 PM   #3
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Okay, I just went to Calphalon's website and educated myself and, yes, I see the piece of cookware you describe.

I think it's really an issue of getting it seasoned more thoroughly. If it is sand cast, extra seasoning will aid in filling the gaps in the rough surface. Now, this won't happen overnight and, especially under your described cooking conditions, it may take significantly longer.
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Old 11-21-2014, 12:00 PM   #4
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I have a lodge reversible griddle/grill pan. It's pretty smooth and I've never had anything stick. I also use a little coconut oil spray.


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Old 11-21-2014, 01:28 PM   #5
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Thanks

Thanks... Yeah, that's kinda what I'm thinking, that it's just going to take time to build up that seasoning glaze and fill in around the bumps on it.

This is what it looks like as far as the texture.
Guess I'll just have to cook a lot more bacon, burgers and such on it.
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Old 11-21-2014, 01:43 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eeturk View Post
I have a lodge reversible griddle/grill pan. It's pretty smooth and I've never had anything stick. I also use a little coconut oil spray.


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I almost got the Lodge one, but decided on the Calphalon because it has a little trough around to collect drippings from grease.
I didn't open the package on the Lodge brand though. Is the texture on that one not like what's in the image I posted in my last reply?
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Old 11-21-2014, 02:37 PM   #7
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Rough casting

I used to work in a cast iron foundry. I know you can get that sort of texture if there are a lot of impurities left in the iron before you pour it. They may have done it on purpose for some other reason.
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Old 11-21-2014, 02:39 PM   #8
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I have Lodge CI skillets that came with a pebbly finish. Once they were well-seasoned they were non-stick enough to fry eggs and have them slide all over the pan.
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Old 11-21-2014, 02:51 PM   #9
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I have Lodge CI skillets that came with a pebbly finish. Once they were well-seasoned they were non-stick enough to fry eggs and have them slide all over the pan.
Thanks.... So Andy, sounds like those are pretty much the same way. Just gonna take time, I guess.
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Old 11-21-2014, 02:55 PM   #10
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Welcome to DC! Something else you might consider, I have the electric Presto Liddle Griddle. It's small, lightweight, and does a great job.
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