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Seeking Cast Iron Recipes.

post #1 of 39
Thread Starter 

I just got my first cast iron and I am so excited. I am looking for recipes. Anyone have any to share? (Prefer vegetarian and gluten free, but I can probably convert any that aren't.)

 

Thanks.

 

(I cross-posted in vegetarian as well.)

post #2 of 39
Cast iron pans can be used just like any other pans. Make sure it's well seasoned and you shouldn't have any sticking issues.

I use mine for everything from frying things (really helps the seasoning as well) to pancakes. I use it mostly for meat because it gives a great sear to it but since you are vegetarian, that tip probably won't help you!
post #3 of 39
I too use mine for everything from scrambled eggs to roasting a whole chicken. I love that you can just throw them in the oven too.
post #4 of 39

Recipes?   

 

Just cook in it.  Seriously!

 

I probably do 75% of my cooking in cast-iron skillets.  I sautee chicken breasts, make indian curries (both bean and meat),  toast quesadillas, make refried beans, make ground-beef burrito filling, make stir-fries, sautee onions and peppers for huevos rancheros, make Dutch Baby pancakes (the fact they go into the oven at high temps makes them perfect for that).   DH makes cornbread in them.  I do quick sauces for pasta, cook bacon, fry falafel...

 

Most of our cooking is stovetop cooking, and unless I need volume (cooking pasta or soup) or surface area (pancakes get made on the cast-iron griddle) or lightness (I've got a 14" paella-style calphalon pan) most of that happens in a cast iron skillet.

 

 

post #5 of 39

I'm with everyone else - I cook EVERYTHING in my cast iron pan.

Breakfast: eggs and bacon

Lunch: heat up meat and beans from last night, quick saute some vegetables

Dinners: Socca's and (not at the same meal!) meat, beans, veggies

post #6 of 39
Thread Starter 

Someone just told me that the cast iron (actually, the seasoning) keeps the flavors of what you cook so you flavor whatever you make with whatever you've made. Does anyone else find that to be true?

post #7 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by SundayCrepes View Post

Someone just told me that the cast iron (actually, the seasoning) keeps the flavors of what you cook so you flavor whatever you make with whatever you've made. Does anyone else find that to be true?



Yes.  I have had spicy pancakes the morning after making a curry in my cast iron, and other strong flavors, like bacon, tend to linger.  I wash mine with soap and water and heat to dry on the stove top or in the oven if I've cooked something with a sauce or meat in it.  If it's just a vegetable sautee, eggs, or pancakes, I'll probably just wipe it out and use it again.

post #8 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by SundayCrepes View Post

Someone just told me that the cast iron (actually, the seasoning) keeps the flavors of what you cook so you flavor whatever you make with whatever you've made. Does anyone else find that to be true?



The seasoning itself (the black layer) has never really picked up flavors that I can detect.   However, I do wash mine otu with a bit of soap after use.   If you dont' do that, you leave oils on the surface that can carry flavors.   

 

Seasoning is more than just surface grease -- a well-seasoned pan will not feel greasy to the touch, and you can use soap and that seasoning will not just wash off (don't scrub vigorously or soak, though!).    Seasoning is oil cured right onto the pan that binds with the surface.   

 

I generally give mine a quick wash with a small amount of soap, rinse with very hot water and then put over a burner to dry.  Then I swish in a small amount of oil or fat, rub it around with a paper towel or bit of newsprint (these make great fire starters for grill or woodstove later) and leave it heating for another minute or two to protect/maintain the surface.

post #9 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by savithny View Post





The seasoning itself (the black layer) has never really picked up flavors that I can detect.   However, I do wash mine otu with a bit of soap after use.   If you dont' do that, you leave oils on the surface that can carry flavors.   

 

Seasoning is more than just surface grease -- a well-seasoned pan will not feel greasy to the touch, and you can use soap and that seasoning will not just wash off (don't scrub vigorously or soak, though!).    Seasoning is oil cured right onto the pan that binds with the surface.   

 

I generally give mine a quick wash with a small amount of soap, rinse with very hot water and then put over a burner to dry.  Then I swish in a small amount of oil or fat, rub it around with a paper towel or bit of newsprint (these make great fire starters for grill or woodstove later) and leave it heating for another minute or two to protect/maintain the surface.


I agree with this, but I have still had spicy pancakes after washing a cast iron with soap and water, so it can sometimes linger a bit.

 

post #10 of 39
Thread Starter 

This is all just so interesting. I wish I'd gotten into cast iron years ago. It just all seemed so daunting.

 

Thanks everyone.

 

I'd still love some more recipes if you have them.

post #11 of 39
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by captivatedlife View Post

Dinners: Socca's and (not at the same meal!) meat, beans, veggies



These look interesting. What do you eat with them?

post #12 of 39

my grandma only own cast iron skillets- she cooks everything in them :) Two recipes that we always, always make in a cast iron pan are corn bread and baked beans. For cornbread, while you are mixing it up put the pan in the hot oven with a tbls or two or fat and let it get nice and hot, then take it out and pour the batter into it. Best-tasting crunchy corn bread ever! Unfortunately I can't share our baked beans recipe with you because then I would have to kill you... mischievous.gif

post #13 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by SundayCrepes View Post

This is all just so interesting. I wish I'd gotten into cast iron years ago. It just all seemed so daunting.

 

Thanks everyone.

 

I'd still love some more recipes if you have them.


It is so easy to refry beans in cast iron -- howzabout this:   Bean burritos with onions and peppers.

 

Put pan over medium heat.   Pour in a dollop of oil (this meal, being veggie, I don't worry about low-fat and use a nice big glug of olive oil).


While the oil heats, thinly slice one or two onions.   Throw those in the pan, toss to coat with oil, and start cooking them down.  You want them limp and golden and fragrant, which will take awhile (the longer the better, IMO).

 

While the onions begin to cook...

Mince a clove or two of garlic, stir that in.

Thinly slice some peppers -- I like to use a red bell pepper and then a few Anaheim peppers for moderate heat.  Poblano pepper works too.  Throw the sliced pepper in and keep cooking until onions are browned and peppers are limp too.

 

Add more oil if needed.   You may need to reduce heat to low to avoid burning the onions.   The cast iron will hold the heat nicely.

 

Scrape the onions and peppers out into a small serving bowl, leaving as much oil behind as you can.

 

Into the onion-flavored oil, dump 1-2 cans of pinto or black beans (or the equivalent amount of cooked-from-dry).   I used to do just one can, but my kids are 11 and 7 and we need 2 cans now.

 

Heat beans for a few minutes.  Sprinkle with some ground cumin if desired (just a few pinches).   

Here's the fun of cast iron.  Get a potato masher.  Mash the beans in the pan.  You can leave some beans whole as long as there's a bunch of mashed beans to hold it all into refried bean texture.  Don't worry if your masher is metal, don't worry about knockign around the pan -- that's what its FOR.  

 

We serve the refried beans in wheat tortillas, topped wtih the sauteed peppers/onions, cheese, and sometimes guac.   

 

Or we spread the beans on tortillas, top with scrambled eggs, top teh eggs with the pepper/onion mixture, spread cheese over the top, and serve like that (some baby arugula is good with that combo,too.  Offer salsa at table, eat with knife and fork.  

 

You could use corn tortillas with either option to avoid the gluten.

post #14 of 39
Thread Starter 

I'm going grocery shopping. I'll get the ingredients for corn bread.

 

And the refries sound so good. I make my own black beans so I think I'll try this. 

 

Here's a recipe I found for tortillas made out of mung beans. I LOVE them and they are so much healthier than wheat. PLUS, if you know anything about how awful gluten free tortillas are (except for corn) you can roll and fold these AND they taste good. http://spiceandmore.wordpress.com/2009/08/17/an-exciting-discovery/

post #15 of 39

HEre's another recipe that cast iron makes easy and tasty:

 

http://www.cooks.com/rec/view/0,1718,156188-227207,00.html

 

Dutch baby Pancakes

 

(it's kind of a pancake, kind of souffle, baked right in a cast iron skillet in the oven.)

 

Not sure if it would work with gluten-free flours, but it might (since it is not a risen batter, but one that puffs from eggs).   We have these for dinner fairly regularly, as a large recipe contains lots of egg and is a way to get good rich local farm eggs into the kid of mine who doesn't like straight egg.   


We often top with sliced fruits -- cook about halfway done, top with fruit, finish cooking.   

I've also seen recipes for filling them with savory fillings like taco filling, bruschetta topping, etc. 

post #16 of 39
Thread Starter 

I've heard of Dutch Babies before and you inspired me to look around. Here's a recipe for gf dutch babies I just found:

 

http://www.grouprecipes.com/99989/gluten-free-dutch-babies.html

 
or I read you can just use Pamela's Baking Mix in place of the flour.
post #17 of 39


I enjoy soccas with a curry (sans rice), grilled vegetables, dip, cheese (like pizza).

Yum!

Quote:
Originally Posted by SundayCrepes View Post





These look interesting. What do you eat with them?



 

post #18 of 39
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by captivatedlife View Post


I enjoy soccas with a curry (sans rice), grilled vegetables, dip, cheese (like pizza).

Yum!

 



Curry sounds good. I bought hummus and thought we could dip them in. Does that sound reasonable?

post #19 of 39

There are some great books out there for more traditional recipes, here's one from Lehman's:

http://www.lehmans.com/store/Books___Cookbooks___Cast_Iron_Cooking___Revised___1152975#1152975

Have fun!

post #20 of 39

I use them for everything but they are a lifesaver for simple one pot meals in the broiler. My meals are pretty simple.

 

My favorite is broiled garlic lamb and sweet potato. Basically cut the sweet potato up into about half inch cubes and put them directly in a LARGE cast iron pan, no oil or anything. Put them in the broiler, stirring occasionally until they are toasted and kinda starting to black on most sides. Take the pan out and add some chopped onions and put raw lamb smeared in garlic down under the potatoes and put it back in the broiler. After the juices start to come out of the lamb stir the potatoes and onions and possibly flip the lamb. The potatoes soak up the garlic lamb juice and taste really good if you hit all of them with a little juice. Once the lamb is done pull it out and eat. I usually make broccoli/asparagus/zucchini on the stove top with a little olive oil and salt and pepper to go with it.

 

One thing I have noticed is if I cook fish in one of my cast iron skillets the next thing i make in it has a sort of fishy smell. But it isn't bad enough to change anything. My grandmother was very particular about fish but I don't care so much. She never let anyone cook it in the house, let alone in one of her cast iron skillets.

 

 

 

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