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Old 04-28-2010, 10:50 AM   #21
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Brush it with grapeseed oil. Heat it on the stovetop until the oil just begins to smoke and turn the heat off. Set the pan outside to cool if it's smoking too much.

Do this four or five times before using, letting the pan completely cool before going through the process again. Obviously, you can do this over a succession of days.

Cooking a lot of bacon in cast iron is an old standby method of seasoning but this does impart a bacon smell for quite a while unless you blanch the bacon first.
It's already seasoned. Any cooking will just add to the seasoning.
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Old 04-28-2010, 11:31 AM   #22
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It's seasoned at the factory. I'm suggesting that this is not sufficient. Because it's not.

Grilling lean proteins does not "add to the seasoning." At all. It's a grill pan, remember?

Four or five sessions of skinless supremes will have the pan dryer than the Sahara desert with the factory seasoning but a distant memory.
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Old 04-28-2010, 11:48 AM   #23
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Four or five sessions of skinless supremes will have the pan dryer than the Sahara desert with the factory seasoning but a distant memory.
I am not sure I agree with that. When cooking chicken is a CI pan you are not doing it sans fat (if you are doing it correctly). There will be enough fat in the pan to cook the chicken without sticking and also contribute to the seasoning if you have done it right.
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Old 04-28-2010, 12:11 PM   #24
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It's seasoned at the factory. I'm suggesting that this is not sufficient. Because it's not.

Grilling lean proteins does not "add to the seasoning." At all. It's a grill pan, remember?

Four or five sessions of skinless supremes will have the pan dryer than the Sahara desert with the factory seasoning but a distant memory.
I disagree as well. I have factory seasoned CI from Lodge and it started out fine and got better with use. I did not have to do any added seasoning to use it successfully the first time.

I do remember it's a grill pan.

I agree with GB that cooking any protein is done with fat and that fat will contribute to added seasoning for the pan.
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Old 04-28-2010, 02:44 PM   #25
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I am not sure I agree with that. When cooking chicken is a CI pan you are not doing it sans fat (if you are doing it correctly). There will be enough fat in the pan to cook the chicken without sticking and also contribute to the seasoning if you have done it right.
IT'S A GRILL PAN, with ridges, you'd have to put a quarter inch of fat in the pan to have it actually come into play while you're cooking. Spraying with oil or brushing with oil doesn't help much either - what doesn't trickle down into the valleys between the ridges gets sucked right off by the lean protein as soon as you slap it in the hot pan. The result is a pan that won't release quickly enough - it burns grill marks too deeply resulting in a bitter, burned flavor, instead of the striped Maillard reaction you're looking for.
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Old 04-28-2010, 02:46 PM   #26
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Good point. I forgot we were talking about a grill pan and not a skillet.
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Old 04-28-2010, 03:12 PM   #27
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what doesn't trickle down into the valleys between the ridges gets sucked right off by the lean protein as soon as you slap it in the hot pan.
So what is your suggestion for seasoning the ridges??
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Old 04-28-2010, 04:41 PM   #28
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So what is your suggestion for seasoning the ridges??
You can cook fatty foods on it the first five or ten uses. That's always an option, but the least effective IMO.

Otherwise you can brush on a high smoke point oil and heat it until it is barely smoking, stop, let cool and repeat the process several times over a series of days. Since you're not cooking food during this kind of seasoning enough of the brushed on oil stays on the ridges to season it. I like this method - I think the high heat seasons the pan at real world heat - especially a grill pan.

You could melt bacon grease until it covers the ridges and heat in a 200 degree or so oven for several hours. That said, I still like the high heat/high smoke point oil method.

This will work but a better solution is a carbon steel pan like something from Matfer Bourgeat or de Buyer. Way, way better performance than cast iron IMO. Season them pretty much the same way though.
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Old 04-28-2010, 05:00 PM   #29
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Thanks! ~~~ I just use the old fashion method of a very light coat of shortening/lard and into a 350* oven for an hour or so...turn the oven off and go to bed. Two or three trips like this has always given me a good start to building up the carbon layers (seasoning) After that, repetitive use adds to the layers nicely

Fun!
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Old 04-28-2010, 05:24 PM   #30
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Gee - I've had a Lodge cast-iron grill pan for about 15 years now, & use it primarily for boneless skinless chicken breasts. The seasoning is terrific (it was a regular Lodge that I seasoned myself, not the factory-seasoned); the pan certainly isn't "dry" or compromised in any way; it turns out lovely moist chicken, fish steaks, beef, & lamb - grill marks & all; & is no problem to clean. All I do is allow it to cool down & then use hot water, a plastic scrub pad, & sometimes just a dab of dishsoap.

Go figure.
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