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Old 10-26-2011, 01:49 AM   #21
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Hmmmm...I prefer my steak without teflon. I guess it won't kill me to make one more purchase. I won't try broiling with the stove I have now, never really noticed if it had one of those pans or not. It's a really old stove. I don't want to wait until I move because I have my mind and stomach set on steak. It won't go away until it's satisfied unfortunately.
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Old 10-26-2011, 06:40 AM   #22
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The only problem I see with doing an impromptu CI purchase and steak cook is the pan will not be seasoned. Plus there is a slight learning curve with the way it heats up and retains heat. If you aren't used to CI, cooking a nice steak in a new pan probably isn't in the steak's best interest.
I have cooked pork chops in a non-stick pan before. If you don't move them around and of course use very little oil, in other words just let the meat sit in one spot without moving or flipping right away, it will pick up a sear. And if the pan is in decent shape you should not have bits of teflon falling into your food. It it's peeling it should be thrown out. The problem that some folks associate with non-stick pans comes from the fumes, like mentioned. Those fumes come about if you heat a dry pan to high temps, 600F or so. BT, says 550, he would know, he's got birds and I'm sure is up on that stuff. A pan with oil in it and then a steak tossed in when the oil gets hot is not going to reach those temps, so you are not going to get those fumes unless you walk away and forget about your steak, in which case the pounding on your door will alert you, lol.
Using a non-stick pan is certainly not the preferred method, but it will cook your steak.
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Old 10-26-2011, 08:55 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pacanis View Post
The only problem I see with doing an impromptu CI purchase and steak cook is the pan will not be seasoned. Plus there is a slight learning curve with the way it heats up and retains heat. If you aren't used to CI, cooking a nice steak in a new pan probably isn't in the steak's best interest.
I have cooked pork chops in a non-stick pan before. If you don't move them around and of course use very little oil, in other words just let the meat sit in one spot without moving or flipping right away, it will pick up a sear. And if the pan is in decent shape you should not have bits of teflon falling into your food. It it's peeling it should be thrown out. The problem that some folks associate with non-stick pans comes from the fumes, like mentioned. Those fumes come about if you heat a dry pan to high temps, 600F or so. BT, says 550, he would know, he's got birds and I'm sure is up on that stuff. A pan with oil in it and then a steak tossed in when the oil gets hot is not going to reach those temps, so you are not going to get those fumes unless you walk away and forget about your steak, in which case the pounding on your door will alert you, lol.
Using a non-stick pan is certainly not the preferred method, but it will cook your steak.
Too late, I purchased one already , it said it was pre-seasoned or something like that. What does that mean anyway? How can a pan/skillet be seasoned?
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Old 10-26-2011, 09:02 AM   #24
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Too late, I purchased one already , it said it was pre-seasoned or something like that. What does that mean anyway? How can a pan/skillet be seasoned?
It's not really seasoned. There are MANY threads on cast iron seasoning here and about 10 million if you google.

You basically need to slather your skillet with Crisco and bake a finish onto it. It's not hard. You should also run out and buy a lot of bacon and sausage and cook it up in your new skillet.
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Old 10-26-2011, 09:06 AM   #25
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Cast iron, stainless steel, high carbon steel, mineral pans, enamled cast iron, even aluminum pans will make a great steak. Each has it's own peculiarities.

Cast iron is fool proof and is nearly indestructable, if you use it properly. The new "pre-seasoned" pans from Lodge need to be washed, tehn heated again to dry the moisture away. Then, simply wipe a bit of lard, shortening, or oil on the pan and let it begin to smoke. Wipe a bit more fat on it and it's ready to start cooking.

Most people believe that a pan has to be smoking hot to create a great sear. The pan surface should be somewhere around 360'. You'll get that over medium-high heat easily. When the pan is hot, simply place the seasoned steak on it and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, without touching it. Flip and repeat. About 3 minutes should get you a little less done than medium rare, depending on how thick your steak is. 3 and a half minutes is good for most people. 4 minutes and the steak starts going into the a little pink in the midlle stage. For perfect results everytime, use an instant read meat thermometer, or learn to detect how done it is by touch. I get it right by observing the steak, and the color of the seeping juices, and some internal timer in my brain that I can't explain.

Carbon steel pans work the same way as do cast iron. They need a little seasoning. I have a flat bottomed carbon steel wok that cooks great steaks. The metal is thinner than in cast iron pans, and so heats more quickly. But steel and iron are pour conductors and so suffer from hot spots. As long as the heat source is even accross the metal, the hot spots will go away. That's why most stainless steel is eather clad, or have aluminum or copper disks on the bottom, to distribute the heat more evenly. And you have to understand that the thermal mass of carbon steel is less than for cast iron, simply because there is less metal to carry and hold the heat.

Stainless steel is notorious for foods sticking to it, because it is used unseasoned, that is, the food touches bare metal. The sticking can be elliminated by heating the pan to cooking tempeerature, then adding a tbs. or two of oil and coating the cooking surface.

Cook the steak the same way on all of the above pans.

Unknown to maost people, you can season aluminum pans the same way you season cast iron. I found that out while using an aluminum camping set on a Colemon White Gas powered camp stove. The seasoning worked great. Aluminum heats very quickly, but gives up its heat very quickly as well, and so needs a good heat source pumping heat to the pan.

Just remember, it's all about transfering heat into the meat. I have even tried something very unique in cooking steaks, just last night. I put about an inch of oil into a CI pan, heated it for making french fries, cooked the fries, and then place a steak into the hot oil for 4 minutes a side. The steak was medium rare with an amazing crust that was very thin. The downside to this method is that you cant season before frying. You have to season it afterwords. Even so, it was a darned tasty peice of sirloin.

Don't be afraid of steak. Just understand how it reacts to heat, then use common sense (derived from knowing something about the pots, pans, and cooking techniques you wish to use).

Come to think of it, you could easily season the meat before deep frying a steak. Simply season, then use a fork to stab the seasonings into the meat.

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Old 10-26-2011, 10:13 AM   #26
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It's not really seasoned. There are MANY threads on cast iron seasoning here and about 10 million if you google.

You basically need to slather your skillet with Crisco and bake a finish onto it. It's not hard. You should also run out and buy a lot of bacon and sausage and cook it up in your new skillet.
+1

You'll know you used too much oil if it leaves a sticky coating after baking it.
And bacon... lots of bacon. That really seasons it up nice. As does making corn bread in it. You'll love your CI pan once it gets seasoned and you get used to it. And you will be able to sear your steak, flip it, then put the whole shebang into the oven to finish (if it's a thick steak).
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Old 10-26-2011, 10:42 AM   #27
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+1

You'll know you used too much oil if it leaves a sticky coating after baking it.
And bacon... lots of bacon. That really seasons it up nice. As does making corn bread in it. You'll love your CI pan once it gets seasoned and you get used to it. And you will be able to sear your steak, flip it, then put the whole shebang into the oven to finish (if it's a thick steak).

Mmmmm! Cornbread and bacon. Must do it.

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Old 10-26-2011, 10:51 AM   #28
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Lodge cast iron is pre-seasoned the same way they recommend you season yours at home, only on a much larger scale. Click on the Cast iron is also relatively easy to care for link I provided earlier to get all the information you need for seasoning your pan. BTW, cooking the steak in your new purchase will put you well on your way to seasoning it for life!
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Old 10-26-2011, 10:53 AM   #29
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Mmmmm! Cornbread and bacon. Must do it.

"Honest honey, I have to do this. I'm using them to season the pan."
MMMMM.... cornbread with bacon IN IT!
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Old 10-26-2011, 11:20 AM   #30
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Mmmmm! Cornbread and bacon. Must do it.

"Honest honey, I have to do this. I'm using them to season the pan."
I love accountability
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