Food - Drink
Tips To Identify A Vintage Cast Iron Skillet
By KAREN GRECO
There’s nothing like a cast iron skillet. The heavy-grade iron holds heat more efficiently and distributes it more evenly, ensuring well-seared meats and perfectly roasted vegetables. It goes seamlessly from stovetop to oven and, because it's seasoned, the naturally nonstick surface only gets better with age.
Cast iron made before 1957 is considered vintage, and you can source it through a dealer, or, if you believe that part of the fun is the hunt, flea markets and antique stores can have quality vintage cast iron cookware for as little as $20. If you're up for the challenge, these tips will guide you to success.
To start, is it heavy? Cast iron pans weigh in anywhere between four and 12 pounds, and since real cast iron skillets are molded, there are no seams or handle attachments. The entire pan should be one piece, and finding reddish-orange rust is actually a good sign — it proves that the pan is indeed made from cast iron.