On the Southern edge of the Tennessee border, a small town by the name of South Pittsburg whirs with the sounds of a foundry, of melting pots, sand blasting and seasoning machines. It is here where cast iron and steel cookware are created by American craftsmen. True local and artisanal kitchen wares for even the most discerning consumer are designed and manufactured every day.
The mtbchick test kitchen is fortunate enough to have the opportunity to cook with these perfect pieces of cookware. And perfect they are– if you consider the imperfect pieces are simply thrown back into the melting pot. There are no seconds, only perfection.
Summer in the mtbchick Test Kitchen
It has been a busy summer in the mtbchick outdoor test kitchen with the the Camp Chef stove blaring its BTUs for everything from fried eggs to Spanish Tortilla, from Venison or Antelope burgers to asparagus. It’s no wonder with all of the miles we’ve been riding, food is never far from the front of mind.
The bulk of our cooking is done in cast iron. Whether slow sautéing onions in butter or griddling English muffins, our main go to cookware is the cast iron. Some vintage, some handed down from family, mostly Lodge, there are many pieces for many uses.
Enter the Lodge Seasoned Steel Skillet
The move to steel presented a change in cooking method. The steel skillet works more like a wok. Where the cast iron tends to cook from its own heat, the steel cooks from the flame. The steel skillet reacts quicker to changes in the flame temperature and high heats tend to work well with this style of pan. Because of this, the chef is able to quickly cook vegetables while retaining more nutrients.
The Seasoned Steel Skillets are lightweight, easy to clean and very easy to use in general. For your first use, remember to use extra oil or butter or cook bacon (without sugar if possible). After a small handful of uses, the season will perfect itself, and you can return to using light amounts of oil or butter. Far better than ingesting Teflon for every meal, a properly seasoned skillet will deliver for eternity.
For more care instructions, visit the Lodge website.Never clean with soap, use a stiff brush. Extra sticky foods may require a hot water soak– but if you care for the pan properly, this will rarely be an issue.
This weekend’s vegetable medley was Sweet Potato, Brussels Sprouts and Garlic.
2 sweet potatoes
8 Brussels sprouts
4 Shiitake mushrooms
2 cloves of garlic
Turn the burner on medium and drizzle a small amount of oil into the skillet. Dice the sweet potatoes and place into a hot skillet with a few drips of olive oil. Trim the bottom of the Brussels sprouts slice horizontally then place in the skillet with the potatoes. Add a few drops of oil if necessary or if this is the first use of your skillet. Slice the mushrooms and toss in with the other vegetables, stirring frequently. Mince and add the garlic. Toss the vegetables and add oil as necessary. Season with Redmond’s Sea Salt and freshly ground black pepper. Serve piping hot next to a hot Venison burger or a piece of fish. Enjoy your healthy, disease fighting meal!