Do you know about cast iron? Do you that cast iron is the best material for cookware. In fact, the cast iron cookware comes with a natural non-stick surface as well as excellent heat retention properties. And, if a cast iron cooking pot is used with a full care, it will stay as new for many years.
Starting with this article, we are extending our suggestion in non-electronics products as well. Suggestion on non-electric products, however, currently limited to Kitchen segment only.
I am going to discuss here advantages of cast iron cookware with its benefit, and impact on the food that one would cook in it. Further, I will also discuss the best brand of the cast iron cookware segment in the Indian market.
History of Cast Iron Cookware
The history of cast iron cookware is very interesting: evidence of its first use go back to around 2000 years before. Further, cast iron cookware has also been a craze among American homes in early 20th century. However, that faded later due to the introduction of cheaper, lightweight Teflon-coated aluminum cookware in the 1960s and 70s.
Sales of cast iron cookware are just a fraction of the total cookware market today. Actually, In terms of price, cast iron cookware is twice, thrice, and sometimes four times costlier than a regular metal cookware.
Along with durability and reliability, allowing a right space for cooking has been the key factors why cast iron cookware still maintains attraction, despite being costly. Its survival has also been ensured by some big brands using it in genuine products.
Most cooks and chefs still prefer cookware made with cast iron. Thus, if you love cooking as I do, and want to cook food as tasty as foods made in the five-star restaurants, then you should not only look for brilliant Kitchen appliances rather you should also invest for branded cast iron cookware.
Benefits of Cast Iron Cookware
- If used with a care, then it would last forever
- A natural non-sticky surface ( Some prior experience with cast iron cookware is needed to take advantage of this)
- Excellent heat retention feature
- The best in terms of heat distribution
Looks and Design
One of the big problems with cast iron cookware is – they do not look very attractive. In a well-decorated kitchen, an ugly cooking pot even if that help cooking nutritious and tasty food is not appreciated much. While doing a research on the best cast iron cookware online, we found some international brands – have made entry into the Indian market through online platforms. These highly reputed multinational brands have introduced cast iron cooking pot, Tawa, Kadai in attractive and fancy design. Though they are costly, but their quality is far excellent.
Which are the best Brands
As I have discussed earlier, the market of cast iron cookware is very small, and the same time stylish cast iron products are very costly as well. Since it being a less moving market- not many manufacturers are keenly participating in aggressive sales. This has resulted in a few choices in terms of numbers of brands up for buyer’s trust.
Especially in the online sales space, no premium Indian brands exist with a large catalog of cast iron cookware. There are some, but hardly attracts sales because of poor quality products.
Even many international brands have listed products on Amazon India, but failed in gaining ratings and customer response. However, there is one US brand, which has not only been making good sales, in fact, gained three to five-star ratings in good numbers for products listed at Amazon India. Yes, I am talking about Lodge, a US-based cast iron cookware manufacturer with more than 100 years of experience in this field.
The trusted cookware brand was founded in 1896 in South Pittsburg, Tennessee and still, runs a large plant for producing products for sales in the USA market as well as exporting to other countries. In India, Lodge brand cookware, not cheap though, has been imported and sold primarily through online retail channels like Amazon and Flipkart.
Lodge – The US Cast iron cookware brand
The video listed below explains well: how Lodge factory has been using 100 years of experience, the latest melting technology, brilliant product design, and the next level of thinking for producing some a-one quality cast iron cookware.
I would like to bring an essential point to reader notice: Lodge, the US brand has been involved only in cast iron cookware business. In fact, it has been able to register good sales, despite its products are not so cheap. This is showing – in what kinds of business practices Lodge believe and what kinds of inherited value system it has been following in terms of product quality and customer care.
In fact, a well-known fact in the business world is – only quality products with complete customer satisfaction could help a brand and its products to be relevant in changing market and its equation.
Also, another advantage with a single brand manufacturer is – they never compromise with the only business entity they rely on for surviving. In fact, single brand companies are always prompt in responding to customers query.
How Cast iron cookware are made in Lodge Factory
By referring to the official video by Lodge, I could list out the process involved in making cast iron cookware.
Ingredients: By using a large magnet plate real irons are sorted out from metal dumps.
Weighing: According to the capacity of the bowler, the actual iron, separated from mental dump gets weighed.
Melting: Now it goes through a tough melting process. During the melting processing, some samples are collected from the bowler for checking quality.
Testing: the collected sample gets tested and after approval certification, the substance moves to the next level.
Slagging: This is the process where impurity gets filtered out of the substance.
Casting: Once the substance is at a right temperature, it gets poured into a temporary sand structure for giving a shape of a cookware.
Shake out: This process is basically to break the sand structure; call it sand removable process for getting out the cookware – almost ready for final finishing.
Finishing: In this process, the cookware from the shakeout process gets cleaned and some hard paint for safety is added.
Grinding: Here the cookware gets metal polishing for adding right softness. If there are some portion that may hurt user gets fully leveled.
Washing: This is certainly not a water washing. It must be some chemical-based washing to pull out even micron size particles. Such precision in the process makes a product either premium or ordinary.
The final processes: The process that comes after seasoning is baking of the cookware, followed by human inspection of each cookware one-by-one to fillet out damage one. And, at the end, the cookware goes through packaging process.
When it comes to sturdiness, Cast iron cookware could be as soft as glass made pots. As I can recall, my mother used to buy cast iron Kadai from Pheriwala, but due to some mishaps, within a month or two, the Kadai would break into pieces.
Lodge has taken this into consideration: it is using a perfect blend of the indigenous technology of making cast iron with the latest technology of metal melting to produce durable products. If iron is melted at a right temperature, its impurity is removed completely, and a calculated carbon percentage is allowed to remain in it – this could give a tough metal that would last in a kitchen area much longer than expected.
How much temperature should be given at what stage – are something comes by a long experience. Since Lodge has been in iron melting business for more than a century now, it has achieved a fine-tuning of the process for making some of the toughest cookware in the world.
Lodge in Bharat through E-commerce route
Thankfully, efficient e-commerce platform exists in Bharat, so Lodge could make a smooth entry here. Lodge products are very costly, so not selling so rapidly, which is, by the way, required to sustain a profitable offline retail & distribution infrastructure. An offline infrastructure means a team of sales executives, distribution network, dealers, call center setup, and a costly management team.
Not affordable Price
While a regular, good quality frying pan costs just 800 to 1000 rupees, Lodge frying pan would cost not less than 2500 rupees. However, in return, you are getting the best quality cast iron cookware that ensures uniform heat distribution in the pan for a great cooking experience.
Lodge products are certainly not affordable in Bharat. However, cooking quality and the food purity remains at the best as Lodge cookware successfully provides a natural non-stick surface, not having a chemical layer on it. Because of hard durability though Lodge products are the best choice and would last much longer. So you shouldn't care much about price factor.
Lodge Products range
At present, around 20 products from Lodge are listed on Amazon India. The first category is of cast iron frying pan, grill pan, oven, and melting pot. And, the second category is of silicone hot handle holder, highly recommended for user’s protection from heat while using a cast iron cookware.
I got tempted to do a review of this brand after using its 10.25-inch deep skillet; I paid 6100 rupees for it. The frying pan can be used for various types of veg and non-veg cooking. Interestingly, it also works with induction Cooktop.
- Natural non-stick surface without using a chemical layer
- Works well with gas, electricity, and induction cooking platform
- Highly durable
- The best utilization of cast iron properties which ensures heat gets evenly distributed; therefore, the ready food gets a uniform taste.
- Recommended by most Chef
- Very costly in India
- Takes little more time for getting ready for cooking
- Not suitable for instant cooking
- Some experience is needed for the best use of cast iron cookware
- Heavy weight
Even though Lodge cookware is costly in Bharat, but the kind of convenience and perfection it brings in daily cooking is remarkable. After having a few days of cooking session with it, one would certainly not turn to a regular frying pan. If you can afford it, then buy it.
|Price||1900 to 12000 Rupees|