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Old 01-19-2008, 09:56 PM   #1
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Angry Cast Iron Grill Pan Problem!

I recently purchased the round Lodge Logic CI grill pan. I've been experiencing much difficulty in the cleaning process of this pan. I'm cleaning it with hot water and a stiff nylon brush while the pan is still hot. The problem is that when I'm grilling, say, marinated chicken breasts, all the juices and pieces of grilled chicken falls down between the ridges and then burns up and sticks to the pan. By the time I'm finished cooking, it's stuck pretty good and the hot water/brush technique is not enough to dislodge all the black burnt crud. What's my problem? Should I be trying to get all that stuff out, or should I let the stuck on stuff stay in there?

After I manage to get the rest ofl the crud out by scraping it with the handle of a metal spoon, I throw it back on medium heat to dry, then I add some Crisco and coat the pan, and finally rub the oil into the pan with a paper towel. This leads me to problem #2: the paper towel tends to disintegrate and leave pieces all over the pan.

I can see how a well seasoned skillet would be easy to burnish with a paper towel, but my not so well seasoned grill pan is not as simple. What is the solution?!? Does the pan need to get coated with all the black carbon stuff or should I strive to clean it very well each time? The pan is not as smooth as I would like it yet. Do I need to season it better? Is it normal that stuff gets burnt up like that? HELP!!!

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Old 01-19-2008, 10:48 PM   #2
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I don't think it normal. I have a black cast iron grill pan, never meeting that problem. I heat pan over medium power until the pan is very hot. Then I place on marinated stuffs, such as pork chop or chicken. I brush the flowing down sauce back. I think you might not have the pan hot enough or have too high power.
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Old 01-20-2008, 12:01 AM   #3
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I just Googled Lodge and here are two numbers to call for help
1-800-541-8683=====1-423-586-5839. This very unusual problem all of my Lodge cast iron works like a charm sorry you are having problems
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Old 01-20-2008, 09:34 AM   #4
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Eatsoats I do not own one of the pans you describe so I will make some general comments that (I hope) may prove helpful to you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by eatsoats
I recently purchased the round Lodge Logic CI grill pan.
While the Lodge Pro Logic CI comes "pre-seasoned" and ready for use, it is by no means really seasoned well. I suggest you clean your new pan, and season it yourself...maybe even twice. Follow the directions given by Lodge at their web site Lodge Manufacturing Following this I would also suggest you use the pan to "fry"...bacon, chicken, french fries etc. This will add addtional seasoning to the pan, moving it towards having a non-stick surface.



Quote:
Originally Posted by eatsoats
The problem is that when I'm grilling, say, marinated chicken breasts, all the juices and pieces of grilled chicken falls down between the ridges and then burns up and sticks to the pan.
Re-seasoning the pan will help here somewhat. Also taking a lesson from the BBQ grill consider this. For proper broiling/grilling the surface of the meat needs to be dry of water and any mixture (Marinade) thereof. When wet meat (steaks) hit a 500*+ grill instead of searing it boils at 212* until the moisture has evaporated never to regain the texture and taste had a dry surface been put on the grill. Some items vegetables, fish/seafoods/chicken benefit from a light coating of Oil before going to the surface. So maybe after marinating your chicken((if water is present) dry it off and just coat with light coating of oil.

Lastly, make sure your pan surface is hot to sear the meat, and give the food time to release from the pan surface before you try to turn it. Most foods will let you know when it's ready to turn.


Quote:
Originally Posted by eatsoats
This leads me to problem #2: the paper towel tends to disintegrate and leave pieces all over the pan.
Consider not using a paper towel. Use a cloth or use one of the pan sprays.
Pam would be one. If paper towels are your only option then don't worry about the paper "lint". Just simply brush them off before you use the pan next time. Hopefully sometime in the future when your pan devleopes a good seasoning this step can be eliminated all together, unless you are going to store the pan for an extended period of time.

Hope this help somewhat!

Have Fun & Enjoy!
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Old 01-20-2008, 10:17 AM   #5
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the build up of carbon

is what makes the cast iron pan nonstick.

you should be able to clean your pan easily

by putting water in it and let it sit overnight

to soften the material you wish to remove.

Once it is really clean grease it with solid shortening

and bake it in the oven. Do it several times.

As posted above, the instructions are on the web site.

Your marinade if it has soy sauce or sugar will burn and be hard to remove.
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Old 01-20-2008, 10:44 AM   #6
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If your marinade is acidic, it could be compromising the factory seasoning. As said above, the new stuff is seasoned from the factory, but it isn't well seasoned.
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Old 01-20-2008, 04:51 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by camp_cookie View Post
If your marinade is acidic, it could be compromising the factory seasoning. As said above, the new stuff is seasoned from the factory, but it isn't well seasoned.
It was Zesty Italian (kraft), so perhaps the vinegar could be playing a role?
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Old 01-23-2008, 11:03 AM   #8
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Temperature question: Say your electric range goes from 0 to 10. What setting would be ideal for grilling with CI? I was using *5* for slow grilling and *6* for what I consider normal grilling speed. Anything wrong with this? [I realize all ranges are different, but bear with me here.]
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Old 01-23-2008, 01:07 PM   #9
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I have the exact pan you're having problems with here

Quote:
Temperature question: Say your electric range goes from 0 to 10. What setting would be ideal for grilling with CI? I was using *5* for slow grilling and *6* for what I consider normal grilling speed. Anything wrong with this?
I think that you are good to go with 6, though I'd even go 7-8. My boyfriend likes it higher but he's wrong (as usual). I walked in on him with that pan smoking like a charcoal grill and said WHAT ARE YOU DOING?!

While cast iron can withstand and maintain very high heat, that doesn't mean you need to use very high heat. Those same properties make cast iron capable of reaching high temperatures without cranking up the flame. Sometimes I start on a 7-8 but find myself turning down the heat after a few minutes. You should always preheat the skillet before putting food in, too (as is true with any skillet in most cases).

Quote:
I'm cleaning it with hot water and a stiff nylon brush while the pan is still hot.
While a damp cloth won't hurt the pan when it's hot, putting water in the hot pan can make it crack or break - though I've never seen this happen.

Another thing to be wary about is rancid seasoning oil in your pan. Those grooves allow oil to pool in the gaps. If you're lightly seasoning your pan after every use, which ideally you should, then be sure you are wiping the excess oil out from each of the grooves. Any stagnant oil will grow rancid in there, and it will affect the flavor of foods you cook later, and is likely not good for your insides either.

Well I'm done rambling.
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Old 01-23-2008, 01:09 PM   #10
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I just bought one of those thinking I could still "grill" without freezing my butt off....nope. Those things are a PITA. The meat has to be totally dry or like you said, the fluids get trapped in between the grates and starts to burn, which then changes the flavor of your food. Even with the hood on "Eleven", there is still a ton of smoke happening. Even though it came pre-seasoned, I reseasoned it before I used it. It cleaned up fairly easy, but it's definately easier and you wind up with a better finished product using a grill.
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