Preparing your oil cured pot for use
Wash out thoroughly with boiling water and dry. Coat the inside with cooking oil (or vegetable fat) and heat until the pot begins to smoke. When cool enough, using a paper towel, wipe inside clean.Repeat until towel wipes clean. The potjie pot is now ready for use. The more you use it the better it becomes.
After each use
Rinse with warm water and use a brush or scraper to remove stuck-on bits. For really stuck-on food, scrub with salt and oil, rinse and wipe clean. Dry the pan and coat with a thin layer of oil. Store until ready to use. Cool the pan and store until ready to cook again.
Storing your potjie
After each use, wash the potjie pot and dry over heat source to remove excess moisture. Coat the inside with cooking oil or Spray and Cook. Store your potjie with the lid off and absorbent paper inside.
Quick Dos & Don’ts
of Cooking in Cast Iron
- Don’t be afraid of eggs, tomatoes, or fish in cast iron. Some of these recipes take practice, but don’t be afraid of trying them.
- Do be mindful about what you first make in your skillet. See below for the first four things to make in your cast iron skillet and you’ll be on your way to a perfectly seasoned partner in the kitchen.
- Do use gentle utensils like wood, silicone, and rubber. The occasional metal fish spatula or pancake turner is okay, but try to avoid lots of metal utensils in your pan – especially while building up the seasoning.
- Don’t store food in cast iron. It is bad for the pan and bad for the food.
- Do clean the pan right away. And avoid soaking it!
The first four things to make in your cast iron skillet:
- First fry a few eggs. Fried eggs are the cheap, fast, and easy way to learn how your pan works on any heat source. Preheat the pan without any fat or oil for a minimum of five minutes. Then, and only then, can you add oil or butter, followed swiftly by the eggs. Give the eggs plenty of time to set before you try to move or flip them. Reduce the heat to cook the white and yolk without burning the underside.
- Then sear some pork chops & make a pan sauce. These two really show off the cast iron skillet’s stove-to-oven skills and force you to get a good grip on cleaning it. After cooking the meat, pour some broth or wine into the pan to make a pan sauce.
- Next, fry up some crispy, tasty schnitzel. Pork or chicken schnitzel is the next big step in caring for our cast iron skillet through cooking as it calls for enough cooking oil to season the pan. You’ll get dinner out of the deal too!
- Follow up with an easy-fancy frittata, a baked omelette that starts with some sautéing on the stovetop before finishing in the oven. You’ve worked up a bit of seasoning by frying the schnitzel, so you’ll get a nice crust without sticking and you’ll get a good baseline for how other egg dishes are going to cook in your pan.