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Podcast Episode 11: Cast-Iron Cooking

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Episode 11 of the Fine Cooking Podcast is all about cast-iron cooking. Our editors discuss everything you need to know, like where to buy a cast-iron pan, how to properly care for it, and even how to season it. Listen up for some of our editors’ favorite cast-iron recipes!

What We’re Cooking Now


Diana has been working hard in the Test Kitchen making DIY worcestershire sauce.

This is Chris’s favorite time of year because Champagne mangos are in season. He loves that they’re not fibrous, and they’re sweet and juicy. He likes to eat them out of hand, though he also dices them and adds them to muffins and scones. They’re also terrific in this Coconut Rice Pudding and in a Mango Lassi.

With her kids on spring break, Sarah embarked on a baking project, using these dinosaur cookie cutters and the chocolate variation of Abby Dodge’s Vanilla Cutout Cookies. It was her first time working with these embossing-style cookie cutters and she was delighted to learn it made it really easy for the kids to decorate the cookies with royal icing.

Kathy made a quick fish chowder, with a base of bacon that she cooked until crisp. Then she sautéed carrots, shallots, and potatoes in the bacon fat, added some herbs and some paprika and pepper, then deglazed with white wine and clam juice to cover by an inch. Added a splash of cream and some chunks of cod, and simmered it a few minutes until the cod was cooked. Here are some more quick chowders we love:

Spicy Corn Chowder

Smoked Salmon and Leek Chowder

Creamy Cod and Leek Chowder

Sausage Potato and Fennel Chowder

How to Season and Care for Cast Iron


Here are some basic cast-iron 101 tips.

Though the basic 10-inch cast-iron skillet is one of the most versatile pans you can buy, here are some other cast-iron pieces that we love, if you want to broaden your collection.

Another handy tool is a plastic pan scraper to effectively remove any gunk that builds up on the surface.

Favorite Cast Iron Recipes


Our latest issue has a special focus on cast-iron, with some fabulous recipes:

Cast-Iron Spatchcocked Chicken with Pastrami Spices

4 Speedy 1-Skillet Dinners

Dutch Babies (both sweet and savory)

Skillet Cornbread

Plus these older favorites:

Skillet Cobblers (these are best in enamel-lined cast iron)

Skillet Cookies

Diana even uses her cast-iron skillet for this riff on Shakshouka. Cooking acidic ingredients in cast iron can erode the finish a bit, but if the cooking time is brief, it won’t damage the pan.


Leave a Comment


  • fherdrich | 05/13/2019

    I was listening closely to the podcast, for the Care of Cast Iron section. Closely and hopefully because each of my adult daughters have “killed” a cast iron frying pan. I say “killed” because the pans had to come to Grandpa to be re-seasoned. I was hoping for enlightenment by Podcast.
    And I will get them, and the son-in-laws (both cook), to hear you out.
    But my jaw dropped in disbelief when you all said, “But NOT eggs! Use nonstick!!”
    Clearly you'al are overheating your pans. Think about it, and look in the kitchen of your Breakfast Cafe. It’s griddle or cast iron pan for eggs. Nothing can be better for eggs 🤷🏼‍♂️
    Listen to your own good advice: Heat Slowly (& don’t overheat). I’ve been around wood stove and cast iron cooking 75 years (I remember our kitchen when I was 1yr old, really). Back then if the patina got too thick, especially the outside, you stuck it in the open fire inside the cook stove. Just enough to reduce the crust.
    But my kids put the heat up high under their cast iron, followed by scrubbing, and were left with a bad ‘rash’ in the pan. S•l•o•w Heat / medium high at most. And Medium to High-Mediun for Eggs 😋😋😋❣️

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