When the best cooks you know love the same product, pay attention.
I used to be a cast-iron hold-out. All the best cooks I knew used it. But I thought it was too heavy. I didn’t think I’d like cleaning it. Then, I used it, and my world changed.
Any pan that is used by both fisherman cooking shore lunches and gourmet cooks preparing five course meals meets the definition of versatile, and proves its quality. But it’s the taste of the food cooked in cast iron that makes it so popular.
Cast iron makes delicious food. Meats are so tender you can cut them with your fork. Breads with a flaky crust, melt in your mouth. Vegetables tender and rich with flavor, make me consider being a vegetarian—until I remember I’d have to give up meat! Maybe it’s the lack of evaporation, or the searing that’s enabled, or maybe it’s the carmelization. Whatever the reason, food cooked in cast iron really does taste better.
I can make a pot roast in a cast iron Dutch oven that is fork tender. And I’ve watched my son and future daughter-in-law bake cinnamon rolls over a campfire high in the Rocky Mountains in the same size Dutch oven. For their rugged outdoor camping, they prefer Lodge cast iron. We both love the ease and beauty of LeCreuset cast iron for indoor cooking or grilling.
My favorite pan is my LeCreuset cast iron buffet casserole. This shallow casserole is basically a braiser that’s perfect for searing, braising and slow cooking. Its tempered glass lid allows me to keep an eye on my cooking, and is oven safe as well. The smooth interior promotes carmelization, precise cooking and is simple to clean. My mother would laugh, but I crave the onions I can carmelize in this dish; they add so much flavor to my vegetables and roasts.
Cast iron evenly distributes heat over the entire base, making it ideal for all forms of cooking, whether slow-cooking, roasting, searing, stir-frying or baking.
Preheating cast iron is always wise before you add your ingredients. When using a pan with a black interior, test if the pan is sufficiently hot. Simply sprinkle a few drops of water; if they sizzle and pop, the pan is ready for use. If you are using an enamel coated cast iron (like LeCreuset sand-colored interiors), the entire cooking surface should be thinly coated with oil, fat, or liquid if your recipe requires moisture. LeCreuset enameled cast iron works perfectly on all stove tops, including glass induction. Cast iron’s fantastic heat conduction means high heat settings are unnecessary; low to medium heat settings are ideal for thoroughly cooking food, and provide the best, most flavorful results even when frying or searing. Cooking with too much heat can cause foods to stick or brown too quickly, leaving interiors undercooked.
The classic pot roast is my favorite go-to roast recipe, and the Dutch oven bread recipe is a favorite from a friend. But Britta and her cinnamon rolls baked with nineteen pieces of well-placed charcoal is the amazing accomplishment. She and Mark have mastered ‘glamping’ – translated as glamorous camping, and their mastery of cast iron at their campsite is fascinating.
Fisherman joke about who will inherit their favorite cast iron pan, but they’re not exaggerating. A perfectly seasoned cast iron skillet might be the most revered and protected item at fish camp. Enameled cast iron is made for generations of use, and I’ve witnessed decades old Dutch ovens in action. Great cooks know what works. I was late to the table, but I’m so very glad to test new recipes, and new uses for cast iron now. To my inspiration chef Dave, and my sales rep Deb, I say a very sincere, ‘Thank you!’ - Sue
This delicious and hearty fall salad serves as a perfect main or side dish featuring sweet potatoes, yams, beets, and a slightly sweet, fruit vinaigrette.
Prep Time: 10 minutes - Cook Time: 50 minutes - Total Time: 60 minutes
Yield: 4-6 People
- 1 Sweet Potato (yellow)
- 1 Yam (orange)
- 4 Beets
- 6 Tbsp Blood Orange Olive Oil, divided
- 3 1/2 tsp Sea Salt (Vanilla Bean or Sel Gris), divided
- 2 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar (Harvest Fig or Honey)
- 8 Cups Spinach
- Pumpkin Seeds or Pecans, for finishing
- Goat or Feta Cheese, for finishing
What can a Himalayan Salt Plate do exactly and what is it? Salt plates are slabs of Himalayan pink rocks that act as a heating tray for grilling. You can use it to make your chicken, shrimp, fish, etc.
Using salt plates not only add flavor to your food, but it also has its own health benefits. It improves blood circulation, it gives you a healthier libido, provides support to your respiratory functions, aids with blood sugar, and keeps the pH of your body balanced.
HOW TO USE:
A refreshing pasta salad using Frantoia Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Wild Garlic Herb Seasoning mixed with fresh veggies, salami and pecorino cheese.
Prep Time: 30 minutes - Cook Time: 0 minutes - Total Time: 30 minutes
Yield: 4-6 People
...INGREDIENTS:- 1 Pasta Rock
- 1/2 lb Artisan Pasta
- 1 tsp Mustard
- 1 tsp Herb Seasoning (Wild Garlic or Bruschetta) (Nest)
- 2 Tbsp Vinegar (Prosecco or White Balsamic) (Nest)
- 2 Tbsp Frantoia Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oil (Nest)
- 1 cup Broccoli
- 2 Carrots
- 1/4 lb Salami
- 1/4 cup Pecorino Cheese
A nutritious muffin recipe made with cranberries, pecans and blood orange olive oil. The perfect breakfast meal on the go for the entire family. ...
Prep Time: 15 minutes - Cook Time: 20 minutes - Total Time: 35 minutes
Yield: 1.5 Dozen
- 1/2 cup Blood Orange Olive Oil (Nest)
- 1/2 cup Brown Sugar
- 1/4 cup Granulated Sugar
- 1 Egg
- 1 cup Rolled Oats
- 1 cup Greek Yogurt
- 1 cup Flour
- 1 tsp Vanilla Bean Sea Salt (Nest)
- 1 tsp Baking Powder
- 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
- 3/4 cup Dried Cranberries
- 1/2 cup Chopped Pecans
Nothing like warm Banana Bread with EVOO Butter to kick start your morning breakfast or enjoy as an afternoon treat.
Prep Time: 20 minutes Cook Time: 60 minutes - Total Time: 80 minutes
Yield: 1 Loaf
- 1/2 tsp Vinegar (Prosecco or White Balsamic)
- 1/2 cup Milk
- 1 cup Sugar
- 1/2 cup Frantoia Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 large ripe Bananas
- 2 Eggs
- 1 tsp Baking Soda
- 1/2 tsp Sea Salt (Vanilla Bean or Sel Gris)
- 2 cups All-Purpose Flour
- 1 stick Butter, room temperature
- 1/2 cup Frantoia Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Sea Salt (Vanilla Bean or Sel Gris)
hese bite size, melt in your mouth appetizers will become your go-to recipe for special events and parties. You can’t eat just one!
Prep Time: 15 minutes - Cook Time: 30 minutes - Total Time: 45 minutes
Yield: 4-6 servings
- 1 tsp Frantoia Italian Olive Oil
- 2 Tbsp Miscuglio Italian Dried Herb Blend
- 2 cups packed Baby Spinach, chopped
- 1 6oz can Artichoke Hearts, drained and chopped
- 4 Tbsp Cream Cheese, softened
- 2 Tbsp Mayonnaise
- 3 Tbsp Grated Parmesan Cheese
- 1/2 tsp Habanero Heat Sea Salt
- 24 baby Portabello Mushrooms
- Barrel Aged Dark Balsamic Vinegar for finishing (optional)
Enjoy the flavor depth of high quality, sweet balsamic paired in perfect harmony with fresh lemonade. Not only does it look beautiful but it takes your taste buds on an adventure!
Prep Time: 10 minutes - Cook Time: 5 minutes - Total Time: 15 minutes
Yield: 1 ½ gallons
- 2 cups Sugar
- 2 cups Water
- 1 cup Lemon Juice
- 1 gallon Soda Water
- 1 Tbsp (per glass) Harvest Fig Balsamic Vinegar
Let me tell you the secret to holiday baking success: You can fully bake pumpkin pies right now and freeze them to enjoy later. Because of their fat content, fully baked pie crusts freeze beautifully, and the rich custard fillings of pumpkin pie and sweet potato seem as if they were designed for freezing too. There are a few extra steps that make freezing baked pumpkin pies easier, but they aren't any harder than baking the pie itself.
Baking a Pumpkin Pie for Freezing a pumpkin pie destined for the freezer doesn't require a special recipe. You can bake your favorite pie recipe as you normally would, with one suggested exception: Bake the pie in a disposable aluminum pie pan. These pie pans are thinner, meaning that the pie will freeze faster and therefore avoid developing large ice crystals, which can ruin the texture of the pie. Plus you avoid putting your favorite glass or ceramic pie pan in the freezer, leaving it free to bake another pie in before Thanksgiving.
Wrapping a Pumpkin Pie from FreezingOnce baked, cool the pie completely. This will take several hours on a cooling rack at room temperature. Then wrap the pie tightly in several layers of plastic wrap to ensure it is tightly sealed. I like to wrap the wrapped pie in single layer of aluminum foil for extra protection against freezer burn, but this step is purely optional. Freeze the pie completely on a level freezer shelf for up to a month.
Thawing a Frozen Pumpkin PieRemove the pie from the freezer and move it to the fridge at least 12 hours before you'd like to eat the pie. Thawing at room temperature can cause the filling to weep, leaving a soggy crust in its wake. A long, slow thaw is the way to go. Occasionally the plastic wrap will leave a few blemishes on the pie post-freezing; cover these with a sprinkle of cinnamon-sugar or a generous dollop of whipped cream.
How To Freeze Pumpkin PieMakes 1 frozen pie, ready for thawing for Thanksgiving Day
What You NeedIngredients
1 fully baked pumpkin pie, preferably in a foil pie pan
For the perfect pie pan at Nest, Emily Henry bakeware:
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