How Do I Restore Cast Iron Skillets?

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Restoring cast iron skillets doesn't require you to send your utensil out to a professional. Restore cast iron skillets with help from a classically-trained chef with experience in both World class restaurants and private dining companies in this free video clip.

Part of the Video Series: Helpful Kitchen Tips
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Video Transcript

Hi, I'm farm-to-table chef, Teca Thompson, and today we're talking about how to restore your cast iron skillet. Many times cast iron skillets if they're not properly cared for will go bad or start to get very rusty. However this is completely something that can be reversed and restored. So today I'm going to start with a rusty cast iron skillet, and we're going to go to the sink and wash it with steel wool and soap and water. This is one of the only times I'm going to use soap in a cast iron skillet and that's because all the natural oils that once were are already stripped and the rest is already set in so it doesn't matter about soap right now. You kind of want the soap to take that rust away. Once you've scrubbed your cast iron skillet you're going to want to make sure you dry it very thoroughly. So I'm just going to take my kitchen rag and dry it and make sure that all the rust is out of there. Wash all the rust out of it. This might take some muscle. But it will be well worth it when we're done. So now we're going to take oil with a high heat index. I'm using vegetable oil today. I'm just going to pour about a tablespoon into the center of my cast iron pan. Then I'll take some paper towels and I'm just going to rub the oil all around the inside and the outside of my cast iron skillet making sure that is thinly but thoroughly coated all the way around. And these things are great. You can find them sometimes in garage sales or something like that. Usually for like five or ten dollars which is really a steal if you know how to restore it because brand new they're like 50 so it's a very good thing to have and it's a cooking must. So now that my pan is properly oiled on both sides, I'm going to throw it into my oven which I've preheated to 400 degrees. And I've lined the bottom of my oven with tin foil and I'm going to place the pan upside down. Therefore all the oil can work off and it won't set in and do any cooling. And the tin foil down on the bottom is to catch it. So we're just going to go and place it on the top. And we're going to let that thing bake for about four hours. Now you always, always please remember that the cast iron is metal all the way around so you have to make sure to protect your hands when you're taking it out of the oven. Or after the cooking process is done, you can leave it in your oven to cool. And then just take it out. I'm Teca Thompson, and this is how to restore your cast iron skillet. Thank you for watching.


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