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Historic Mixed Grain Bread

Mixed Grain Breads (Time 0_00_23;06)Bread was an important food source in the 18th century. Not only was it a staple, in and of itself, but it was also an important ingredient in many other foods. It was known to many as a staff of life. Bread played such an important role in the nutritional needs of society that, when there were shortages in the supply of wheat, other grains had to be used to avoid mass starvation.

Mixed Grain Breads (Time 0_01_05;18)During the latter half of the 18th century, western European countries saw a massive increase in population. England itself saw a 70% increase in its population during that same period. This expansion had a dramatic effect on the demand and availability of food. Wheat, for instance, doubled in price in this time period. The result was an important trade link between the American colonies and England.

Mixed Grain Breads (Time 0_01_21;10)Wheat became the largest export crop for the Mid-Atlantic colonies in the 1700s. When George Washington decided to diversify away from tobacco, he chose to cultivate wheat. Consumer goods that were imported into the colonies were often paid for in wheat flour.

Mixed Grain Breads (Time 0_01_50;27)
Back in England, wheat was so important in feeding the populous that the British government enacted laws regulating the production of bread. These ordinances fixed the price of the bread while controlling the weight of each loaf according to the price of wheat flour. Commercial baking became highly regulated. The types of bread that bakers could bake, the grains to be used, and even their salaries were decreed by law.

Mixed Grain Breads (Time 0_02_31;00)
For centuries, white bread was revered by the public as the best bread to eat. The white bread flour came from regular flour that was bolted or sifted many times through cloth to get the finest flour available. Originally this flour was separated out and used only for sacramental bread or for the gentry, but over time, the regular public started to demand to have this white bread, too. Members of the medical community and government did their best to encourage the consumption of whole wheat or brown bread as it was thought that it was much healthier than the white bread that the common people demanded, but these claims were met with general resistance.

Mixed Grain Breads (Time 0_03_10;03)Mixed grain breads were made with a combination of grains, wheat, barley, oats, and rye. At other times, other things were included such as potatoes, rice, beans, or even peas. Mixed breads were generally considered far inferior in taste and texture to wheat breads.

Mixed Grain Breads (Time 0_00_52;01)Today we are going to be making a mixed grain bread made from wheat flour, rye flour, and barley flour. It would have been a much less expensive loaf to produce intended mostly for commoners. It would have been found in England and the American colonies.

 

  • 12 oz. Ale (home brew or good imported)
  • ½ cup Wheat Flour
  • 1 ½ tsps. Dry Active Yeast
  • 8 oz. Wheat Flour ( about 1 ½ cups)
  • 8 oz. Rye Flour (about 1 ¾ cups)
  • 8 oz. Barley Flour (about 2 cups)
  • 1 tbsp. Salt
  • 4-6 oz. Water
  • Cornmeal

Let’s start by talking about yeast. Bakers in the 18th century got their yeast from the brewer. The brewer collected the yeast by skimming the croizen or the foam that is on the top of a fermenting batch of ale. Bakers would then cultivate this yeast. It was called barm and it was in a liquid form.

Mixed Grain Breads (Time 0_03_55;20)
To make your own barm you need some ale, either a home brew or a good imported ale. You could use water, but ale makes a better product with a more authentic flavored bread when you’re finished. In a clean bottle place about a half a cup of wheat flour and add 1 ½ teaspoons of dry active yeast. Mixed Grain Breads (Time 0_04_32;23)
Add a 12 ounce bottle of ale and give it a really good shake to get all the dry ingredients mixed up. Once you’ve got it all good and mixed up you can set it aside to give it 15 or 20 minutes to activate.

Our dough is fairly simple. We’ve got three kinds of flour, wheat, rye, barley. Since the flours have different densities, it’s best to weigh them, but in this case it turns out to be about a 1 ½ cups of wheat flour, a 1 ¾ cups of rye, and 2 cups of barley flour. That’s about 8 ounces of each one of these flours. Because we’re using both wheat flour and rye flour, this is sometimes called maslin bread. All these flours are usually available at your local grocery store in the specialty baking section. To this we’re going to add about a tablespoon of salt, and mix it up.

Mixed Grain Breads (Time 0_05_47;01)
Now let’s add our barm with about 4-6 ounces of water and mix it until it makes a nice sticky, but firm dough. We’re going to knead this quite a while until the dough becomes very elastic, and then form it up into a loaf. Mixed Grain Breads (Time 0_06_36;28)Sprinkle your pie pan with a little bit of flour, put the loaf in there, and cover it with natural linen. This is a whole grain dough, so it’s going to take quite a while to rise, even overnight. We want it to rise until it’s about twice as big as when it started.

Mixed Grain Breads (Time 0_06_58;20)When your bread is ready to bake, make sure to preheat your oven. If you’re using an earthen oven, you want to get that up to full temperature and then let it cool down to bread temperatures. If you don’t have your wood fired oven yet, you can use a standard home oven. You want to make sure to preheat it to about 400 degrees.

Mixed Grain Breads (Time 0_08_00;16)
Once your dough has risen properly, sprinkle some cornmeal onto your peel and turn out the dough onto your peel, then transfer into the oven. Mixed Grain Breads (Time 0_08_04;13)
Your bread’s going to take 30-45 minutes to bake depending on the temperature of your oven. When it’s done, it should sound hollow when tapped and you should let it cool at least an hour before slicing.

Mixed Grain Breads (Time 0_08_49;29)
You know, the crust might be tough, but for all their complaints about this not being white bread, this mixed grain bread is very good.

Transcription of Video:

Bread was an important food source in the 18th century. Not only was it a staple, in and of itself but it was also an important ingredient in many other foods. It was known to many as a staff of life. Bread played such an important role in the nutritional needs of society that when there were shortages in the supply of wheat, other grains had to be used to avoid mass starvation.

Today we’re going to be making a multigrain loaf. It’ll be very similar to the kind of bread used to feed common people in the 18th century.

During the latter half of the 18th century, western European countries saw a massive increase in population. England itself saw a 70% increase in its population during that same period. This expansion had a dramatic effect on the demand and availability of food. Wheat for instance doubled in price in this time period. The result was an important trade link between the American colonies and England.

Wheat became the largest export crop for the Mid-Atlantic colonies in the 1700s. When George Washington decided to diversify away from tobacco, he chose to cultivate wheat and consumer goods that were imported into the colonies were often paid for in wheat flour. Back in England, wheat was so important in feeding the populous that the British government enacted laws regulating the production of bread. These ordinances fixed the price of the bread while controlling the weight of each loaf all according to the price of wheat flour. Commercial baking became highly regulated. The types of bread that bakers could bake, the grains to be used and even their salaries were decreed by law.

For centuries, white bread was revered by the public as the best bread to eat. The white bread flour came from regular flour that was bolted or sifted many times through cloth to get the finest flour available. Originally this flour was separated out and used only for sacramental bread or for bread for the gentry, but over time, the regular public started to demand to have this white bread too. Members of the medical community and government did their best to encourage the consumption of whole wheat or brown bread as it was thought that it was much more healthy than the white bread that the common people demanded, but these claims were met with general resistance.

These mixed grain breads were made with a combination of grains, wheat, barley, oats, and rye, and at other times other things were included, potatoes, rice, beans, even peas. Mixed breads were generally considered far inferior in taste and in texture to wheat breads. This is a loaf that’s made from a regulated ratio of two parts green pea flour to one part wheat flour. This is not the bread we are going to make today. Instead we’re going to be making this mixed bread. It’s made from wheat flour, rye flour and barley flour. It would have been a much less expensive loaf to produce intended mostly for commoners. It would have been found in England and the American colonies. Let’s get started.

Let’s start by talking about yeast. Bakers in the 18th century got their yeast from the brewer. The brewer collected the yeast by skimming the croizen or the foam that is on the top of a fermenting batch of ale. Bakers would then cultivate this yeast. It was called barm and it was in a liquid form. Here’s how to make your own barm. You need some ale, either a home brew or a good imported ale. You could use water, but ale makes a better product, a more authentic flavored bread when you’re finished. We’ve got a bottle here with about a half a cup of wheat flour in it and to that I’m going to add 1 ½ teaspoons of dry active yeast and to that I’m going to add this 12 ounce bottle of imported ale, and we need to give this a really good shake and get all the dry ingredients mixed up. Once you’ve got it all good and mixed up you can set this aside, give it 15 or 20 minutes to activate. Our dough is fairly simple. We’ve got three kinds of flour. I’ve got a wheat flour, a rye flour and a barley flour. Because the flours have different densities, it’s best to weigh them, but in this case it turns out to be about a cup and a half of wheat flour, a cup and three quarters of rye and two cups of barley flour. That’s about 8 ounces of each one of these flours. Because we’re using both wheat flour and rye flour, this is sometimes called maslin bread. All these flours are usually available at your local grocery store in the specialty baking section. To this we’re going to add about a tablespoon of salt, and now we can mix it up.

Now let’s add our barm. We’re going to add that with about 4-6 ounces of water and we’re going to mix this and it should make a nice sticky, but firm dough.

We’re going to knead this quite a while until the dough becomes very elastic. Now I’m going to form this up into a loaf. We’re going to take our red ware pie pan and sprinkle it with a little bit of flour and we can put our loaf in there and cover it with natural linen. Natural linen is something that we offer on our website and in our print catalog. This is a whole grain dough. It’s going to take quite a while to rise, several hours, even overnight. We want it to rise until it’s about twice as big as when it started.

We want to make sure to preheat our oven. If you’re using an earthen oven, you want to get that up to full temperature and then let it cool down to bread temperatures. If you haven’t got your wood fired oven yet, you can use a standard home oven. You want to make sure to preheat it to about 400 degrees.

For more information about baking in an earthen oven like this, you want to make sure to check out our video Baking Bread in an Earthen Oven Part 2. We’re going to transfer our dough onto our peel. First we sprinkle a little corn meal and now we can turn our dough out onto the peel.

Your bread’s going to take 30-45 minutes to bake depending on the temperature of your oven.

Well, this looks done. It should sound hollow when tapped and you should let this cool at least an hour before slicing.

You know, the crust might be tough, but for all their complaints about this not being white bread, this mixed grain bread is very good.Be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel so that you can get notifications of new videos when they come out and check out our Facebook page so you can get all the latest news from Jas. Townsend and Son. All the items you’ve seen here today, all the cooking utensils, all the clothing, these things are available on our website or in our print catalog. I want to thank you for joining us today and I want to invite you to come along to enjoy the flavors and the aromas of the 18th century.

18th Century Cornbread

Cornbread (Time 0_01_23;05)
For common people in 18th century Great Britain and the American colonies, there were three main dietary pillars, bread, porridge, and ale. People depended on these three things for survival. While there were many similarities between English cooking and that of the colonies. There were also some vast differences as well.

Breads were made with other grains in addition to wheat to make a cheaper loaf for laborers. These breads were promoted to ease the tremendous demand on wheat in Great Britain and Western Europe. This demand for wheat created an important trade link between the mid-Atlantic colonies, where wheat was grown, and Great Britain. The majority of wheat that was grown in these colonies was exported. Cornbread (Time 0_00_47;06)
This created a void of sorts in the food supply for the colonists. It was only natural for this void to be filled by something that was native to the Americas, corn

Cornbread (Time 0_01_00;00)
The word corn, used in the 18th century, meant a kernel or granule of something, like a grain of wheat, rice, barely, or even gunpowder. When we say corn we usually mean yellow corn, field corn, or sweet corn, but in the 18th century they always used the term Indian corn or maize.

Cornbread (Time 0_02_04;04)
In Great Britain, the common perception was that Indian corn was unfit for human consumption. They considered it animal fodder. You simply won’t find recipes that use corn in the old English cookbooks of the 18th century. Cornbread (Time 0_02_33;19)There’s a passage in Joseph Plum Martins Revolutionary War Memoir that expresses this sentiment. “When they (the British soldiers) could find none to wreak their vengeance upon, they cut open the knap sacks of the(Continental) guard and strew the Indian meal about the floor, laughing at the poverty of the Yankee soldiery who had nothing but hogs fodder, as they termed it, to eat.”

Cornbread (Time 0_02_39;10)
The earliest European settlers to the Americas were introduced to this grain by the Indians. They’d been cultivating and eating corn for thousands of years. As demand grew for wheat in the growing Western Europe, more and more of it was exported away from the American colonies. Corn grew in importance in the diet of the colonists, especially for the rural and the poor. So interestingly the three dietary pillars of porridge, bread, and ale remained the same, but with variations. A porridge that was traditionally made with oatmeal was made with cornmeal in the colonies. The wheat in bread that was eaten in Europe was made into corn journey cakes or Johnny cakes, and of course ale was sometimes replaced by corn whiskey.

Cornbread (Time 0_02_16;21)
In our research, we did find a number of 18th century experimental recipes for yeast based bread using Indian corn. These British recipes used a combination of cornmeal and wheat flour very similar to other mixed grain breads. Now it makes a very delicious loaf, but it appears that it was very unpopular. Here’s one authors appeal. He says, “This makes a very cheap and flavorful and nourishing bread. The color of it is true, is very different from that of common bread, but we often eat, by choice, cakes and other kinds of confectionary as deep colored as this and provided that what is set before us is palatable and wholesome, we must not, in times of scarcity, object to it because it may not be altogether pleasing to the sight.”Cornbread (Time 0_04_08;20)

Now when you think of cornbread, you probably think of something like a box of Jiffy mix. These modern day mixes depend on baking soda or baking powder to give it a light and airy texture, but the earliest forms of cornbread in colonial America were of an unleavened type, very similar to the oat cakes or bannock bread that you’d find in the Scottish highlands. It wasn’t until the early 19th century that chemical leavening agents like pearl ash or Saleratus were introduced and used to make a cornbread that we might be familiar with.

Cornbread (Time 0_04_50;29)
We are going to use the earliest cornbread recipe that we have so far from Amelia Simmons in 1796.

  • 1 cup Milk
  • 3 tbsp. Butter
  • 1 tbsp. Molasses
  • 1 pinch Salt
  • 3 cups Cornmeal
  • ½ cup Wheat Flour

Cornbread (Time 0_05_02;17)Place your milk in a saucepan over low heat to scald. To it, add the butter, molasses, and salt, and stir well.

Cornbread (Time 0_05_39;03)
In a separate bowl, mix three cups of cornmeal and a half a cup of wheat flour. After the milk is heated, add it to the cornmeal and mix it well.

Now you can cook it in two different ways.

Cornbread (Time 0_06_18;09)
You can pour it into an already greased pie pan and bake it. When it’s done in this method, it’s called a common loaf. Preheat your oven to about 375 degrees and cook for about a half an hour in this way.

Cornbread (Time 0_06_53;06)
You can also make up some journey cakes or Johnny cakes. Just form up some patties, about a half an inch thick or so and three or four inches around, and then fry them in a pan. If we’re going to use these as journey cakes, take them with us in a haversack, we want to cook them dry without any oil or butter in the pan. Cornbread (Time 0_07_09;06)
If you’re going to eat them right away, you can use butter or grease in your pan and they are really tasty.

Laborers and slaves would bake these cakes on their hoes right over an open fire, thus the name hoe cakes. They could also be baked on a bannock board right before the fire.

Cornbread (Time 0_07_56;13)
This is a great simple adaptation of bread made with corn in a North American kind of way. I’ve also run into a sauce in an old cookbook that goes great with this cornbread. It’s got molasses, butter, and a splash of vinegar. This would make a great meal in and of itself and also very good with soup or beans.

 

Transcription of Video:

In our last episode, we covered mixed breads. These mixed grain breads were made with other grains in addition to wheat to make a cheaper loaf for laborers. These breads were promoted to ease the demand on wheat in Great Britain and Western Europe. As we discussed, this demand for wheat created an important trade link between the mid-Atlantic colonies where wheat was grown and Great Britain. The majority of wheat that was grown in these colonies was exported. This created a void of sorts in the food supply for the colonists. It was only natural for this void to be filled by something that was native to the Americas, corn. In our recent episodes, we’ve taken a closer look at breads of the 18th century. In this episode, we’re going to be looking at an early cornbread.

For common people in 18th century Great Britain and the American colonies, there existed three main dietary pillars, bread, pottage, and ale. People depended on these three things for survival. While there were many similarities between English cooking and that of the colonies. There were also some vast differences as well. Using corn was one of them.

Now before we proceed, let’s clarify the word corn. Corn used in the 18th century meant a kernel or granule of something, like a grain of wheat, or rice, or barely, or even gunpowder. When we say corn we usually mean yellow corn, field corn, or sweet corn, but in the 18th century they always used the term Indian corn or maize. In Great Britain, the common perception was that Indian corn was unfit for human consumption. They considered it animal fodder. You simply won’t find recipes that use corn in the old English cookbooks of the 18th century. There’s a passage in Joseph Plum Martins Revolutionary War Memoir that expresses this sentiment. “When they (speaking of British soldiers) could find none to wreak their vengeance upon, they cut open the knap sacks of the guard (the continental guard that is) and strew the Indian meal about the floor, laughing at the poverty of the Yankee soldiery who had nothing but hogs fodder, as they termed it, to eat.”

The earliest European settlers to the Americas were introduced to this grain, this corn, by the Indians. They’d been cultivating it, eating this corn, for thousands of years, so as demand grew for wheat in the growing Western Europe, more and more of it was exported away from the American colonies. Corn grew in importance in the diet of the colonists, especially for the rural and the poor. So interestingly the three dietary pillars of porridge, bread, and ale, they remained the same, but with variations. A porridge that was traditionally made with oatmeal is made with cornmeal in the colonies. The wheat in bread that was eaten in Europe gets made into corn journey cakes or Johnny cakes, and of course ale sometimes replaced by corn whiskey.

In our research, we did find a number of 18th century experimental recipes for yeast based bread using Indian corn. These British recipes used a combination of cornmeal and wheat flour very similar to the mixed grain breads that we made in our last episode. Now it makes a very delicious loaf, but it appears that it was very unpopular. Here’s one authors appeal. He says, “This makes a very cheap and flavorful and nourishing bread. The color of it is true, is very different from that of common bread, but we often eat, by choice, cakes and other kinds of confectionary as deep colored as this and provided that what is set before us is palatable and wholesome, we must not, in times of scarcity, object to it because it may not be altogether pleasing to the sight.”

Now when you think of cornbread, you probably think of something like this. These modern day mixes depend on baking soda or baking powder to give it a light and airy texture but the earliest forms of cornbread in colonial America were of an unleavened type, very similar to the oat cakes or bannock bread that you’d find in the Scottish highlands. It wasn’t until the early 19th century that chemical leavening agents like pearl ash or Saleratus were introduced and used to make a cornbread that we might be used to.

The earliest cornbread recipe we have so far is from Amelia Simmons in 1796. Let’s make some.

We’ll start with about a cup of milk. I’ll put this in a saucepan over a low heat to scald. To this I’m going to add three tablespoons of butter, a tablespoon of molasses, and a pinch of salt. Now let’s stir this around.

In a separate bowl, I’ve got three cups of cornmeal and a half a cup of wheat flour. After the milk is heated, I’m going to add this to our cornmeal and mix it well.

Now we’ve gone ahead and made a second batch so that we can cook it in two different ways. We’re going to take this second batch and pour it into an already greased pie pan and we’ll bake this. When it’s done in this method, it’s called a common loaf.

And we’re just going to settle that into our pan evenly and put this into the oven already preheated.

For more information about how to cook with one of these earthen ovens, make sure to check out our Building an Earthen Oven Part 2: Baking Bread. That’ll teach you how to use this. If you’re going to be using a regular oven at home, you can bake this at 375 degrees for about a half an hour.

While our common loaf is baking, we’re going to make up some journey cakes or Johnny cakes. I’ve got our other batch of dough here and I’m just going to form up some patties, about a half an inch thick or so and three or four inches around, and these we can fry in our pan. If we’re going to use these as journey cakes, take them with us in a haversack, we want to cook them dry without any oil or butter in the pan. If you’re going to eat them right away, you can use butter or grease in your pan and they are really tasty.

Laborers and slaves would bake these cakes on the hoes right over an open fire, thus the name hoe cakes. They could also be baked on a bannock board right before the fire.

A great simple adaptation of bread made with corn in a North American kind of way. I’ve got a sauce here. It’s something I ran into in an old cookbook. It’s got molasses, butter, and a splash of vinegar. Let’s try this out with a little bit of our cornbread here.

Mmm. This would make a great meal in and of itself and also very good with soup or beans. Be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel so that you can get notifications of new videos when they come out and check out our Facebook page so you can get all the latest news from Jas. Townsend and Son. All the items you’ve seen here today, all the cooking utensils, all the clothing, these things are available on our website or in our print catalog. I want to thank you for joining us today and I want to invite you to come along to enjoy the flavors and the aromas of the 18th century.

Seasoning Cast Iron Cookware

Cast Iron (Time 0_00_15;15)Before you can cook with ironware, it has to be seasoned, and the seasoning does several different things. First of all, it keeps your ironware from rusting. It also creates a nonstick surface, so it makes it much easier to clean after you’re done cooking, and it also separates your food from the metal so you don’t get a metallic taste in your food when it’s done.

  • Cast Ironware unseasoned, washed and rinsed completely
  • Oil of your choice
  • Oven or Open Flame

So the idea of seasoning is to get multiple layers of carbonized oil on the metal. Cast Iron (Time 0_01_26;25)
Most oils work just fine, some better than others. It used to be that most people used animal fats like lard or beef tallow. Most people today use vegetable oil. We are using flax seed oil because it seems to give the hardest nonstick surface of any of the vegetable oils but it does go rancid rather rapidly so be sure that it is fresh however once it has been carbonized on the surface, you don’t have to worry about it going rancid anymore.

Make sure that your ironware is completely clean and that you have removed any wax coating or old seasoning and that all soap residue has been washed off completely, then as soon as it’s out of the water you want to warm it up and dry it off to make sure it doesn’t rust.

Cast Iron (Time 0_04_47;16)
Once your ironware is dry and warm wipe a thin coating all over the inside and outside. You want to make sure to have your work surface protected, because this is a messy job. Once we’ve got the oil completely covering this pot on every surface, then we can take a rag and we can wipe it off, making sure that we don’t have any excess oil. We don’t want it to pool up and get thick any place. We want to have just one thin layer.

There are two ways to fire your ironware. You can use an oven if your piece is small enough to fit inside or you can use an open flame. Either way, this is a smoky, smelly operation. If you choose to do it inside your home, you will need to open all the doors and windows to let the smoke out of the house.

If you choose to put it in the oven, preheat your oven to the highest temperature, 450 degrees or more, place the pot inside and keep an eye on it. When it starts to smoke and turn black you will want to take it out and put another coat of oil on it placing it back into the oven until you have at least a half dozen coats of seasoning or so.

Cast Iron (Time 0_05_10;27)
If you choose to do this on an open flame, you want to heat it up evenly until you start to see some smoke and the pan starts to turn black. Be aware that you can actually burn the seasoning off the pan if you let it set on the fire for too long. As soon as it starts to turn black, remove the pan from the fire and rub with another thin coat of oil making sure to get the bottom and sides as well as the inside.  Cast Iron (Time 0_05_30;07)
Place it back over the fire for a few minutes and repeat until you have at least a half dozen coats of seasoning.

Seasoning your ironware is a simple but necessary task for your ironware. When you’re taking care of this seasoning, you want to make sure that when you wash out these pots, you don’t leave them soaking a long time, you don’t use harsh detergents or it will go into the coating and make your food taste like soap the next time you use it, and you want to make sure to store them so that they stay nice and dry.Cast Iron (Time 0_06_13;20)

 

Transcript of Video:

If you seek the advice of 50 different people about seasoning cast ironware, you’ll likely get 52 answers. Today we’re going to look at how to season your cast ironware.

Before you can cook with ironware, it has to be seasoned, and the seasoning does several different things. First of all, it keeps your ironware from rusting. It also creates a nonstick surface so it makes it much easier to clean after you’re done cooking, and it also separates your food from the metal so you don’t get a metallic taste in your food when it’s done.

So the idea of seasoning is to get multiple layers of carbonized oil on the metal. The real questions are what oil do we use and how do we get it carbonized?

So, the first question, what oil? You’re going to get a whole lot of different answers about what kind of oil to use and most oils are going to work just fine, some better than others. In the time period, most people probably used animal fats like lard or beef tallow. Most people today, they use vegetable oil. Today we’re going to be using flax seed oil. Flax seed oil seems to give the hardest nonstick surface of any of the vegetable oils, it does go rancid rather rapidly so you want to make sure to use fresh flax seed oil. Once it’s been carbonized on the surface we don’t have to worry about it going rancid.

As for the how, we’re going to do two different methods of seasoning today and which one you choose really depends on the tools you have available to you and how big the piece is that you need to do. Today we’re going to season a small cast iron pot. Now this guy’s small enough that he’ll fit in our oven so we can simply bake the finish on. The pot we’re using today is a brand new one so it doesn’t have any coatings on it at all. If you have a pot that has any kind of wax coating or old seasoning on it you want to make sure to wash these off, even new ones like this, wash it off to get any coatings at all.

Make sure you get any soap residues washed off completely and then as soon as it’s out of the water you want to warm it up and dry off the pot to make sure it doesn’t rust.

Our pot is now dry and it’s warm. It being warmed up’s really going to help the oil soak into the pores. Let’s get some oil onto this.

We’re going to put oil on the inside and the outside of the pot. You want to get a nice thin coating all over the inside and all over the outside. You want to make sure to have your work surface protected because this is a messy job. Once we’ve got the oil completely covering this pot on every surface, then we can take a rag and we can wipe it off, making sure that we don’t have any excess oil. We don’t want it to pool up and get thick any place. We want to have just one thin layer.

Okay, so I’ve got the oven fired up. It’s 500 or 600 degrees in there. You may not have an oven like this, you can do this in a regular home oven, just set it for 450 or 500, whatever the maximum temperature is for your home oven, but be aware that this is a smoky and smelly operation. If you do it in your home, you’re going to need the windows open, the doors open.

While that’s baking, we’re going to season another method. If you’re object is too large to bake or if you want to do it outside on an open fire where the smoke wont harm your house, you can do the seasoning on an open fire. What we’re going to do is we’re going to take one of these little folding frying pans and we’re going to season this on an open flame. Our folding frying pans come preseasoned but if you want them to work better, it’s best to get another couple coatings of seasoning on the pan.

I’ve got this pan heated up just like I heated up the other piece, and we’re going to put oil on it.

We want to get a coating on this pan exactly like the other pot. We want to get a nice thin layer on all the surfaces on the outside and the inside. Let’s put it on the fire.

Now let’s heat the pan up until we start to see some smoke. So as this heats up it’s going to start smoking and it’s going to start turning black and what we want to do is make sure that we don’t get it too hot. It’s a bit of a fine line. If you get it too hot, you’ll actually burn the seasoning off. You don’t want to do that, but as soon as that turns black and starts smoking up, we’re going to put another thin layer on it. You also want to hit the bottom so that it gets a good layer on it and then we just put it back on again for a minute or so. We want to have a lot of layers on this. At least a half a dozen.

As you can see, for a job like this a good pair of leather gloves, it’s a must.

Looks like the pan is done. I’ve got a good half a dozen coats of seasoning on this. It’s a nice even black color on the inside. It hasn’t gotten too hot, hasn’t burned the seasoning off, so this pan is done. Now it’s time to look to see how our pot is doing in the oven.

This pot as just a single layer of seasoning on it, so we’re going to need to do the same thing. We’re going to need to use our cloth and put on more oil, nice thin coat, put it back in the oven.

Seasoning, it’s a simple but necessary task for your cookware. When you’re taking care of this seasoning you want to make sure that when you wash out these pots, you don’t leave them soaking a long time, don’t use harsh detergents or those will go into the coating and make your food taste like soap the next time you use it and you want to make sure to store them so that they stay nice and dry.

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