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New Cast Iron Pans?(r/Cooking)
Lodge is a proven manufacturer, which is really all you need in cast iron. It’s pretty straight forward stuff, so you want a brand that has no quality issues with the ~~forging~~ casting.^1 Their preseason is good, but don’t expect to cook eggs on it first thing. Cornbread should be OK out of the box with plenty of fat.
That said, don’t expect the iron the be silky smooth. The biggest complaint I’ve seen is that it’s nothing like their mom’s 2 generation old Griswold, which you could “slide eggs off of”. I’ve never seen a brand new Griswold, as neither have most people today, but I guarantee that most of the smoothness came from just using it everyday for years.^2 Buy a good stainless turner. I personally like this one. It’s sharp, and it’s got a lot of flex but just enough rigidity to keep it from permanently bending, which is perfect for a cast iron skillet.
So, don’t be bothered by all the stuff you see online about using flax oil and baking it for 500 degrees for hours and hours. Buy it, rinse it, cook some bacon in it. Just use the damn thing. Pioneers crossed the country through all manner of hell with them hanging off their wagons. They survived that, they can survive the domestic kitchen.
EDIT: ^1 I’m dumb sometimes.
^2 Also, people that know more about this stuff than I do disagree with this statement, as Griswolds and the like were given a smooth finish at the factory, and Lodge isn’t. Whether or not a baby’s-ass-smooth finish is necessary, I would personally still say is up for debate. It ultimately depends upon what you want to cook in the thing. I may buy a small Wagner to see the difference for myself.