Things have been going pretty well at the ol’ homestead and I want to share a recent success with you.
We purchased cast iron pans. Yeah, they weigh a ton, but wow, do they ever cook things up nice! My husband and I have used nonstick pans for years–skillet and griddle that is, we have copper bottomed pots. We made the switch to a cast iron griddle and skillet a couple months ago for a few reasons. My husband is hard on nonstick pans and even though he doesn’t use metal utensils on them, the coating would inevitably get worn and start flaking and then we’d have to throw out the pan and get a new one. Cast iron is virtually indestructible. We will never have to throw out these pans thereby saving ourselves some money and not adding another pan to a landfill.
There is also some question about the safety of the chemicals used in the coating of nonstick pans. PFOA, the main chemical used in Teflon, has been classified as a carcinogen by the EPA and companies like DuPont that produce it have been asked to voluntarily eliminate the chemical by 2015. PFOA has been found in drinking water and in the bloodstream of 9 out of 10 Americans and most newborns. The chemical also does not break down in the environment.
Cast iron, it turns out, is highly energy efficient and diffuses heat evenly making for better cooked food. Cast iron cookware is also non-toxic and healthy–the cookware leaches small amounts of iron into the food, a nutrient we all need. Cleaning is also a snap, and after the pan has been seasoned it really is nonstick (and you can buy pre-seasoned pans).
We like our pans so much we will eventually get a dutch oven. We also have our eyes on a stove-top waffle iron.
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