Since we’ve had the new skillets for a couple of weeks now, we wanted to share some initial impressions. While the skillets are definitely lighter than the “standard” cast iron we’ve been using, we’ve noticed that the seasoning (these come pre-seasoned) seems to be wearing off prematurely.
As with all cast iron, cooking appropriately greasy food in it immediately after seasoning is important. We cooked good and fatty food, including frying potatoes in lard and browning pork and beef, in it multiple times. When we moved to frying eggs (again, in plenty of lard), they starting sticking to the pan – nooo!!! As you can see from the photos, there is a section in the center of the pan that shows what appears to be wear-through.
We’ve also noticed that the Field Skillet doesn’t seem to heat as evenly as the standard cast iron pans. We agree with other Field Skillet users who have commented that there seems to be a hot spot in the middle of the pan; this hot spot may be facilitating the faster erosion of the seasoning.
What to do? It looks like we’ll need to scrub off the existing seasoning and re-season the pans. It’s been hot here, so that project will have to wait for cooler weather (perish the thought of the oven heating up the house!). In the meantime, we’ll pull out the “backup” cast iron for cooking. The standard cast iron has a rougher surface, and other cast iron users have hypothesized that it’s the rough surface that helps maintain the seasoning. We think it’s too soon to tell, but we’ll update again once the pans have been re-seasoned.
Sometimes being an early adopter doesn’t work out the way you hope: the jury’s still out on whether these are, overall, superior to our standard cast iron.