Rescued Dutch Oven - Fiberglass RV


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Old 04-01-2013, 01:29 PM   #1
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Rescued Dutch Oven

I've rescued a 12" Lodge Dutch oven (6 inches deep and legless) that had floor polish on half of the bottom of it. I ended up using a common household degreaser to get it off, and then have scrubbed and scrubbed with a rag using coarse salt and oil like I clean my others. It looks pretty good, but have yet to season it. I'm concerned that the floor cleaner could have penetrated into the cast iron and could affect the taste of the food (at best!) and poison us (at worse!). I've heard of grinding down really rusted ones. Suggestions, anyone? Lori S.? Thanks!
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Old 04-01-2013, 01:51 PM   #2
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What kind of floor polish? (Do you know?) I would suggest seasoning itself as a cleaner- season, let it sit awhile, then clean it again to remove as much of the oil as you can. The oil should soak up whatever the oil is going to soak up.
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Old 04-01-2013, 02:00 PM   #3
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Floor polish on the inside??????? Weird...

Probably the best way to get rid of all traces is the tried-and-true method of removing everything from cast iron cookware: put it in the campfire and burn it off, polish, carbon, and all.

A woodstove works, too. Either way, when you pull it out of the fire it will look like new steel. The trouble with this method is you really do have to start from scratch building up a new layer of carbon, so expect to "season" four or five times.

If you go this route, the bail (wire handle) can't take as much heat as the cast iron can, so do remove it before putting the pot in the fire.

Francesca
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Old 04-01-2013, 05:29 PM   #4
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We have been recycling cast iron fry pans and Dutch Ovens for a while now, as our five kids setup their own homes. At first we used the oven cleaner Easy Off. It works well but isn’t particularly environment or user friendly. Now, if our new / used pan is particularly encrusted, we simply put it into our night’s campfire and enjoy a glass of wine while the campfire does its work. In the morning it gets pulled from the ashes, wiped with cooking oil and used. Let the seasoning begin!
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Old 04-01-2013, 05:43 PM   #5
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Everything you need to know can be found at the Lodge site:

Lodge - Seasoned Cast Iron
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Old 04-01-2013, 08:54 PM   #6
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Dutch oven info, go here ;www.camp-cook.com :: Index

They have more info there than you would care to know about dutch ovens.


Sandy C
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Old 04-01-2013, 09:27 PM   #7
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Tomatoe Juice

Please refrain from using the "Oven Cleaner" it is dangerous...don't mean to hurt anyone's feelings.
I would recomend TOMATO JUICE, pour it in and cook it out. This will remove and clean and is safe. then season it on open fire.
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Old 04-01-2013, 09:44 PM   #8
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The first time I used a brand new Lodge 10-inch chef's skillet on a Coleman stove to saute some diced green peppers and onions I burnt them so bad there was a thick black carbon layer of them attached to the bottom of the skillet. I couldn't scrape it off even with a steel putty knife.

I didn't realize how hot the Coleman gas stove could get. It had been a long time since I used it plus I was distracted while preparing other things.

Someone at the teardrop trailer gathering had heard that if you put the cast iron cookware in the oven at home on the cleaning cycle it would clean the the cast iron as well.

I had never used this feature on my 3-4 year old Frigidaire oven. I followed their instructions by removing the racks. The high heat can permanently discolor.

I placed the skillet on a trivet in the bottom of the oven. The oven got very hot as the instructions warned. The factory seasoning and the thick carbon layer was completely vaporized at the end of the cleaning cycle. The skillet was absolutely bare beautiful cast iron when done. It worked very well.

I then put a too-thick coating of olive oil on the skillet when I seasoned it the first time. You know, if a little is good more is better! There was a thick, sticky coating in the bottom of the skillet. I ran it through the cleaning cycle in the oven again and then put on the thinnest coating of oil I could. It turned out perfect. It almost looks like a plastic coating. It is very tough and durable.

I use a digital infrared thermometer when cooking now. I bought a Fluke brand one like the one below. It cost around $100 at Grainger Industrial Supply. There are cheaper ones available but I have always like Fluke products. It is handy to have whenever you need to know what the temperature of something is. I use it frequently around the house.

I try to keep my cast iron around 350 degrees maximum.

Jeff
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Old 04-01-2013, 09:49 PM   #9
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You are supposed to turn the skillet upside down so that the oil doesn't pool. See the Lodge web site.
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Old 04-01-2013, 11:39 PM   #10
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Good point!

I did not know that until now.

It is a good idea that I will try next time I season in an oven.

I have done touch-up seasoning on the inside bottom with the skillet on the stove top and with charcoal underneath the dutch oven. I'm just careful to put on a thin coating of oil.

Jeff
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Old 04-02-2013, 04:30 AM   #11
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Personally, I would never eat from the thing again, it just isn't worth saving a few bucks to me.
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Old 04-02-2013, 09:36 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Richardson View Post
.... I bought a Fluke brand one like the one below. It cost around $100 at Grainger Industrial Supply. There are cheaper ones available but I have always like Fluke products. ....

Jeff
If you follow sites like Yugster you can get that same digital thermometer for around $15. They usually show up at least once a month. I use mine all the time. The only thing you have to watch out for is that if you take a reading of hot NEW and TRANSPARENT oil you will often get a higher reading than the oil actually is at. The IR sensor reads the hot pot surface at the bottom of the oil rather than the oil itself.

GcB
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Old 04-02-2013, 10:19 AM   #13
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I have restored a dozen or so cast iron cookware that I buy from Canton Flea Market. I turn mine upside down and use the oven clean mode. There is lots of good advise on these prior comments that are applicable so I wont comment. Also some good websites themselves for people hooked on cast iron. I have my wife's great grandmothers which is well over a 100 years old and it looks and works great. JMO
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Old 04-02-2013, 11:21 AM   #14
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Several good ideas shared here. I too love my cast iron. I have used Easy-Off, wish I had a self cleaning oven, that idea sounds good. There is also a method using a car battery, but I dont know all the specifics. I know someone who does and will ask her to post it.
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