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A: People don’t rinse the pan right away. Don’t leave food in it or it’s harder to clean. After you’re done eating, remove any food from the pan, wash it with hot water and a scrub brush (not metal). Sometimes you have to be patient a bit to get it clean.
Q: How do you restore it?
A: I use a scouring pad. I scrub it with warm water to get rid of the rust. Then I add the oil. Don’t use bacon grease or olive oil; use some kind of vegetable oil. I prefer canola oil. I use my fingers or a paper towel and get it all over inside the pan. You can lightly put it on the outside on the sides and liberally on the inside. Then I heat the pan on medium until it starts to smoke, take it off the heat and put it in the oven (which isn’t on). I put it in there to be out of the way and because it’s hot. After it cools, wipe off the excess oil and it’s like a brand-new pan.
Q: What can you make in a cast-iron pan that’s unexpected?
A: Pie. But line your pan with parchment (you probably don’t have to, but I do). Some people make bread. I also like to make cake — especially pineapple-upside down cake. It’s the only way to get that caramelization that’s so nice.
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