my first cast iron griddle (never had cooked on any before)

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my first cast iron griddle (never had cooked on any before)

Postby working on it » Sun Mar 12, 2017 10:05 pm

  • I never quite understood the love, and sometimes obsession, people have for their vintage cast iron, or Coleman stoves & lanterns. I sorta understood the Coleman thing, having loved using my set that Grandma bought for me when I was a Boy Scout. Forty years after I lost my Colemans, I got a new-fangled dual-fuel pair, a stove and a lantern, and like to cook with the white gas stove (after 4 years of having the Northstar lantern, I still haven't put fuel in it yet). But, that's another story for the other guys.
  • Anyway, I had been cooking my Spam and eggs (another obsession, and story) for years using a Ikea Grilla, a square griddle pan with raised ribs, made of aluminum with Teflon coating. I was looking into my camping gear the other day, and saw that my camping grilla was burnt/scorched from letting it sit unattended on my Coleman (trying to boil-away burnt-on residue). I took it inside, to swap out with its' twin (but the wife just tossed it). That left me without a griddle...temporarily; when I was ordering another, I also looked at the cast-iron stuff, on Amazon. I noticed the Lodge square griddle pan, that I had noted previously, had dropped from $26 to $16, so I jumped on it.
  • I remembered the cast-iron skillet my Grandma used for cooking breakfast, always slick and non-stick, while my mother always had a semi-rusty skillet, and switched to Teflon in the '60's. I presume that I'll have to clean my new one like my grandmother, with just a scraper, a hot rinse, no soap, and oil it immediately. My mother used Brillo soap pads, and let it sit dry (no oil). Nothing stuck to Grandma's skillet, which was thrown away by my uncle, so it was not passed down. Nor was my mother's : she threw it out, as a lost cause. So, now I'm the third generation to use one (my wife never had one), and I've already seasoned it twice, and cooked Spam on it once. Altough it came pre-seasoned, I did it again anyway, before I used it.
  • The Spam stuck a little to the raised ribs, but released easily, though I was cooking at 375 degrees on an induction cooktop. My Ikea Grilla, when new, performed about the same, but when more worn, not as well. I cleaned and oiled it afterwards, as did Grandma, so I presume it will age and cook as well, later. I did notice the surface was a lot rougher than her skillet (but hers was 50 years old at the time); it shouldn't matter, I cook on the raised ribs, for the striping, regardless. I'm also not sure how eggs will work in the Lodge...maybe I'll use the Ikea, for that. Just a flirtation with cast-iron; I'll give it a go, and maybe I'll replace my wife's crockpots with cast-iron Dutch ovens, if I like it.
  • Ikea Grilla.PNG
    Ikea Grilla.PNG (169.13 KiB) Viewed 918 times
    Teflon non-stick, my old go-to
  • Lodge Grill Pan.PNG
    Lodge Grill Pan.PNG (198.7 KiB) Viewed 918 times
    my first cast-iron cookware, my future go-to Spam cooker
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Re: my first cast iron griddle (never had cooked on any befo

Postby bobhenry » Mon Mar 13, 2017 7:04 am

Do yourself a big favor and find on OLDIE cast iron skillet and a nice little 10 - 12 " dutch oven for camp cooking ( you can use them at home too) A good flea market or even yard sales have wonderful old iron. I personally can not begin to see myself frying eggs in a ribbed skillet. I think it would be very frustrating. I made scrambled eggs topped with cheese yesterday morning for breakfast and when done I was able to wipe out my very old trusty 3 notch lodge chicken fryer with a paper towel. I keep a square Wagner and a shallow unknown skillet and the chicken fryer all at my gal pals and they make each and every meal I cook. I have about 85+ pieces some are in the barn camper, some are in the tail gating trailer some are in the teardrop, some are in the caboose and a bunch are on the wall in the house in a house. I gave the first cast iron cooking seminar in 2011 at the Crossroads of America national gathering. I will be doing it again this summer, hope to see you there !
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Re: my first cast iron griddle (never had cooked on any befo

Postby bobhenry » Mon Mar 13, 2017 7:16 am

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=trowX9DxwVI

Here is a link to the seminar.....
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Re: my first cast iron griddle (never had cooked on any befo

Postby working on it » Mon Mar 13, 2017 7:54 am

bobhenry wrote:Do yourself a big favor and find on OLDIE cast iron skillet and a nice little 10 - 12 " dutch oven for camp cooking ( you can use them at home too) A good flea market or even yard sales have wonderful old iron. I personally can not begin to see myself frying eggs in a ribbed skillet....
I haven't been to a flea market in 20 years, and only went to please the wife...I'll look around. If I can't find an old skillet, which brand of new "un-ribbed" skillet would you recommend? Or just get a rough surfaced one (I presume the surface will be rough-like my griddle skillet-when new), and lightly sand it until smooth? And season it first, of course. Or, perhaps the little polycarbonate Lodge grill scrapers would work for scrambled eggs (they fit into the grooves perfectly, at least for cleaning)? I'll try them later on, today, just to see.
Lodge grill scrapers.PNG
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  • 2013 HHRv,"squareback/simple" TTT, semi-offroad? 4x8, 2000+ lbs travel weight
  • featuring: 3500 lb Dexter axle w/brakes & HD leaf spring system > riding on General Grabber 27x8.5-14LT tires, LED lighting inside, A/C & heat, AGM battery 12vdc, 110vac from extended run generator onboard or park power, Coleman dual-fuel stove & Northstar lantern
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Re: my first cast iron griddle (never had cooked on any befo

Postby wagondude » Mon Mar 13, 2017 8:07 pm

If you can find a good dear, the old ones are the way to go. But there is nothing wrong with a new Lodge skillet. Also, after a couple of good seasoning rounds, look up bee's wax seasoning. You won't be sorry.
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Re: my first cast iron griddle (never had cooked on any befo

Postby bobhenry » Tue Mar 14, 2017 7:37 am

Well if you don't like flea markets there are other avenues to good OLD iron....

https://www.shopgoodwill.com/search/Sea ... wthumbs=on
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Re: my first cast iron griddle (never had cooked on any befo

Postby bbrider » Sun Jul 09, 2017 12:32 pm

This goes back to what I have said a 100 times to people over the years, you just never know what people do for fun. I have often shocked people in camp grounds when I pull out one of my Native American flutes and start playing traditional NAF music. Sitting in my lawn chair next to my tent and Harley motorcycle....LOL.

Now I understand camp cooking goes along with camping, regardless of method of camping, and I have always known cast iron cookware is great for campfire cooking. I have never owned or used cast iron and I am the chief cook in my house and when we camp. Camp cooking mostly entails using charcoal in a small smoker pit, something easily packed in our tiny cargo trailer we pull behind the Harley.

Now we are doing more of our camping in the Wee-Go I built thanks to this forum. We pull it with our two door Jeep wrangler. Space for STUFF is still somewhat at a premium. For that reason when I decided a few weeks ago to look into buying a Dutch oven I bought a 10" Lodge camp oven with legs. I watched a lot of videos on cooking in them and thought for two people that would be plenty big enough without taking up to much room. Plus I like the idea of flipping the lid over and using the lid as a griddle for bacon or eggs and such. Grill cheese sandwich? Fried bologna! Two cooking pieces in one!

Anyway, I just wanted to say thanks Bob for the video. It was fun and informative! I made a blackberry cobbler last week in mine, at home, for my first attempt. The recipe was very similar other than I didn't add the soda and I used a small cake pan sitting on mason jar rings to raise the pan in my oven. Only had to really clean the cake pan. Oven just rinsed, dried and re-sprayed before storage. I also put the paper towel I used to wipe down the oven spray inside the oven with fresh paper towels folded and draped over the edge between the lid before it was placed in it's storage bag.

Oh and the cobbler was great! I was a little off on my coal placement with 6 under and 12 over so it took longer to cook than I thought it should....almost 40 minutes. Next time I will try your suggestion of 5/15. I have a HF infrared thermometer gun and used that to check my temperature too...just a last minute thought lol. It confirmed what you said too. I was running between 300 and 325 in temperatures. I added 2 more on top at 30 minutes because it didn't seem to be cooking, that was when I thought about my infrared thermometer lol. I was surprised when I checked it again after 10 minutes to find it was done!

Thinking apple pie next with Pillsbury ready made pie crust top and bottom doing the same method. Just not sure the bottom would get done if I use the cake pan method so I might try the parchment paper. What say you?

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Re: my first cast iron griddle (never had cooked on any befo

Postby stephent » Mon Jul 17, 2017 4:05 pm

If anyone is looking for a particular piece of cast iron cook ware... and if you are traveling through the middle of Arkansas on I-40...lookup Morrilton, Ar. Take the 108 exit south. Go across the Arkansas River bridge and about 1/2 mile or so more and there's an old junk store on the left. Plenty of parking. Those older fellers fix and trade and sell leather cowboy stuff too...saddles...etc.. but I digress...there's probably 4 tons of cast iron cookware on shelves and hanging on the walls for sale..Decent prices for some of the old stuff too...premium prices for the really old collectible stuff though.. There's 1800's skillets and DO's...early 1900's stuff too. Lots of 30's to 70's stuff. so if you are looking for a lid to fit Gramma's old skillet or DO...that's the place to find it. :thumbsup:
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Re: my first cast iron griddle (never had cooked on any befo

Postby bbrider » Fri Aug 25, 2017 12:32 pm

I like learning! Can't help myself. So for the sake of learning, why would something from the early 1900's be any better than a new lodge?
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Re: my first cast iron griddle (never had cooked on any befo

Postby kludge » Fri Aug 25, 2017 1:09 pm

Surface finish.

New cast iron (Lodge and most others) no longer machine the surface smooth after casting... they do a tumbling process that cleans and scours, but the surface on old cast iron is like glass.

Also, remember to be patient and thoroughly preheat your cast iron over a low flame before cooking. Many an excellent pan have been ruined by heating them too quickly over high heat (because cast is slow to heat up) and the pan is permanently warped. (The center of the skillet heats quickly over a high flame while the edge is still cold, the metal in the center expands, but has no where to go except down, so the center of the skillet will be concave instead of flat.) Preheating in the oven is a good idea too.

Any old pans you plan on buying should be checked for this warpage.
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