Top positive review
46 people found this helpful
The ideal pan size and part of a larger system of interchangeable parts.
on September 3, 2013
I own several Lodge brand cast iron skillets - a deep one, a large 12" and this - as well as several antique skillets.
First, let me say the larger 12" is too wide for most electric stove burners; it will overlap the cold part of the stove too much for effective, even cooking. Unless you have a stove top with extra large burners, stick with the 10 1/4 inch Lodge pans.
The 10 1/4 is exactly the right size to cover the typical "large" stove top burner - the spiral type or flat ceramic surfaces.
There are a number of accessories available from Lodge that fit this and other skillets. For example, if you add their cast iron lid, it becomes a "roasting" (or "broasting") skillet for oven use.
Add their glass lid for either stove top or oven use - the plastic handle is safe up to 400F.
What's interesting is those extras also fit the 10 1/4 deep version of this skillet so you don't have a bunch of duplicate, incompatible accessories around.
For daily use, the non-deep version is my go-to pan. The size and shape are ideal, as large as will fit on a typical stove burner.
Rub a steak in salt and pepper, drop it in the skillet pre-heated with some oil and butter and sear on both sides of a few minutes. Perfectly cooked steak, as good or better than if you'd grilled over fire. Try cooking burgers and hot dogs on cast iron too - they get nicely crusted over, like you'd expect from a BBQ. This, of course, isn't unique to Lodge brand cast iron but Lodge has made just about the ideal form factor for kitchen use, with this 10-1/4 skillet and it's deeper counterpart.
As with all Lodge cast iron, these skillets come pre-seasoned. In my experience, they're not seasoned thickly enough to make them non-stick from the start so I wipe them with olive oil and bake them in the oven until the oil polymerizes, forming another coating. I'll repeat that process at least three times to build up a nice thick non-stick seasoning. Google "seasoning cast iron" for lots of opinions on how to do this.
In use, these skillets are great. They're thick enough not to warp at all at varying temperatures and to retain heat well. You can turn your heat down quite a bit once the pan comes up to temperature.
The downside is weight. The assist handle opposite the main handle is especially useful when you've got a filled skillet.
Highly recommended, whether or not you're willing to buy into the rest of the Lodge accessory system.