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Cast Iron Cleaning and Seasoning Help With and Tips & Techniques For Cast Iron Cookware Restoration

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Old 11-12-2018, 04:58 PM
AGruber AGruber is offline
Join Date: Oct 2018
Posts: 10
Default A Couple Clarifying Questions About Smoke Point

Does the smoke point of the seasoning oil limit the temperature at which the pan can be used? For example, if I season using grapeseed oil (smoke point 420), then later cook on it at 450, will this be more likely to burn off the seasoning than if I had used crisco (smoke point 490)?

If you exceed the smoke point of the oil during seasoning, does this cause it to flake/crack after being used? Is that the reason why the seasoning guide here recommends to stay at/just under the smoke point unless it's only for display?
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Old 11-12-2018, 05:30 PM
Doug D. Doug D. is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 6,216
Default Re: A Couple Clarifying Questions About Smoke Point

The caveat against exceeding the smoke point of an oil in cooking is the creation of potentially unhealthful compounds. Exceeding the smoke point in manual seasoning is done in an effort to artificially darken the seasoning to appear more like that from usage over time by maximizing the carbon residue the oil produces. Staying slightly below the smoke point in manual seasoning represents a middle ground in that the oil begins to thermally crack, and is at a temp at which it should properly polymerize, but also should not produce the undesirable odor that exceeding the smoke point would. In other words, it's not as important how high you heat the oil as much as how long you bake each individual layer applied to reach polymerization. The smoke point of the seasoning oil used does not appear to limit the temp at which the pan can be used, although I suppose if you left an empty dry pan on a high burner long enough, any seasoning could very well be compromised, particularly the area in closest proximity to the heat source. Since that could also warp or crack a pan, I'm not inclined to test the theory.
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