A Love Letter To My Cast Iron Pans

by Katy on April 23, 2009 · 17 comments

The following is a reprint from an earlier published blog. Enjoy!

Hello, gorgeous. I’ve been thinking about you.

We’ve been together almost twenty years now, and your allure beckons as much as the day we first met. I got you on the rebound from the furniture-selling Van Gronas. The classified ad in The Village Voice was officially for a couch, but your hefty beauty stole my heart. That couch is long gone. But here you are, still with me, still nourishing my secret shameful need — extra iron in my diet.

Other pans have come and gone. Le Creuset with flashy colors that soon appeared dated. Non-stick, with its possibly carcinogenic lining. But your matte black surface, so silky, so smooth, so — dare I say it? — sensuous. Your hotness never goes out of style.

Sometimes I think I may have loved you too much, but a slow gentle caress with an oily rag revives your former loveliness. If only that were all it took for my youthful beauty to return. Like Dorian Grey, you appear to never age. 

Botox, Katy? No thanks, I’ll just rub my face with an oily rag.

Other pans may tempt me, but I know we will overcome all obstacles. Our love is that which ignites the heavens. Like Romeo and Juliet, Bogey and Bacall, Charo and Captain Stubing.

If I have not said it before, I say I now. I love you! You had me at iron fortification.

Katy Wolk-Stanley

“Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.”

{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

Seraphim April 24, 2009 at 2:09 am

What a great post 😉 I’ve always wanted a cast iron pan…. but I have not yet found ‘the one’.

– Sera


Alison Wiley, Portland Oregon April 24, 2009 at 6:19 am

I love this post: sly, sensual, witty. I’ll never take my cast-iron frying pan for granted again.

If we’re talking about kitchen thrift today, then let me offer up my cheapest, tastiest, healthiest dinner menu ($1.56/meal). My company raved about it!


Meg from FruWiki April 24, 2009 at 10:16 am

I love cast iron! My husband and I are never going back to Teflon ever, ever again. Too much trouble, not to mention possible health effects. Ick!

This stuff really takes a beating, too! So nice to be able to use whatever utensils we want.

And our favorite cast iron piece has to be the dutch oven. Completely replaced our slow cooker! Yeah, you should stay home while the oven is on (unlike the slow cooker), but it cooks fast enough that it’s really not a hassle for us and the taste is soooo much better. Plus, you can use it for deep frying, baking and lots more!


GLM April 24, 2009 at 12:36 pm

Ah, cast iron. The one, true way to cook red meat. The one, best way to cook an egg. The one, best way to cook…. (yes, I’ll never go vegetarian)

Anything that isn’t a high acid item like tomato sauce?

I mean, who needs nonstick when you can have cast iron? It’s just the best way to go. My cast iron cleans up super easy – I just love it!!!


Meg from FruWiki April 24, 2009 at 12:41 pm

Eh. We’ve cooked stuff in BBQ sauce and that’s high acid. No problems. And if it messes up the seasoning a little, just reseason. Not a big deal.


mari April 24, 2009 at 2:02 pm

I like it because you can go from the stove top to the oven ( as in frying chicken) and don’t have to switch pans.


Meg from FruWiki April 24, 2009 at 2:03 pm

Definitely, Mari! And it’s not so bad if we forget to take the cast iron cookware out of the oven before preheating, lol.


Angela April 24, 2009 at 3:06 pm

This is the post that made me start coming to your blog every day. So well written- funny, clever, specific, and with a great first and last line. It really makes me wish I had a cast iron skillet.


Non Consumer Girl April 25, 2009 at 2:51 am

I purchased a cast iron chargrill about 7 years ago. I use it on my stovetop to chargrill salmon steaks, steak and prawns (shrimp).. I also chargrill vegetables such as capsicum and red onion.

It is one of my favourite pieces of kitchenware.

I love it!

Great post by the way Katy!


alunachic April 25, 2009 at 6:05 am

I inherited cast iron skillets from my boyfriend’s grandma. Believe it or not, her sons who cleaned out her house after her death we going to throw them out. OK- after I think about “sons” the previous statement makes sense. Men wouldn’t understand the years of seasoning that went into these valuable cooking skillets.
I love all my cast iron skillets but I especially love the ones I inherited from Bah. I think about her every time I use them!


Everything Cast Iron April 29, 2009 at 9:06 am

Haha, loved this! It’s so true…


Carolyn April 29, 2009 at 10:55 am

I have my grandmother’s pans and also her Dutch oven. Our tradition every Thanksgiving is to cook the dressing in the Dutch oven. It gives us a way to connect with family who are not with us anymore and makes for great Thanksgiving day reminicing. My kids are grown now, and everyone wants the Dutch oven when it is time to pass it on!


Matthew M. of Grand Rapids, MI May 4, 2009 at 7:24 am

Amen, sister! Had our cast iron since my wife and I were married (8 yrs now). I cook many nationalities of food in it. I was the Cast Iron authority when I worked Williams-Sonoma. I will send my pan a love letter, too. Now, if only I could get a lid so I could baste my meals!


Doyle May 27, 2009 at 4:47 am

Not only do you write great posts, you seem to attract great people with wonderful comments.My wife and I have cooked with cast iron cookware almost exclusively for years. We live near a French Colonial City, Natchitoches, Louisiana, where her Grandfather 9 generations ago supplied cast iron cookware to the militia at Ft St Jean Baptiste. We sell cast iron cookware online and love to share with people who use it. We also have a blog about cast iron cookware and when I see writing like yours it makes me think “Wow! That’s the way to do it right”.Good job.


Su Mama November 4, 2015 at 8:00 pm

Had a friend once who wrote — and got published — a short story about a woman who offed her husband with a cast iron skillet. Said friend and husband later divorced. I think.

Cast iron skillets don’t kill people. People kill people.


Katy November 4, 2015 at 9:30 pm

If we take away the cast iron skillets, only criminals will have cast iron.


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