Australian engineers discover how to make a BIG cast iron pan easy to lift, and how to keep iron handles cool.

Who said nothing could be improved in cast iron pans: They're just a lump of iron and a handle, right? Not according to these food-loving mechanical engineers....


Problem 1: Experienced cooks love cast iron pans because they're the best for cooking almost everything, and for their well-known health benefits (seasoned bare iron is still the only natural synthetic-free nonstick available). But they can be heavy and difficult to handle, particularly when BIG.

SOLID Australian solution:

(Click here for YouTube video demo/explanation)

How: Engineer two broad Love Handles, long and low-slung so they touch down quickly on bench or stove-top, to act as a pivot and load-bearing point. Lift easily with one hand - the weight becomes almost zero as the pan approaches vertical - leaving your free hand to easily scoop out. The broad comfortable handles make gripping and twisting easy. Simple, but a big development for anyone with weak or sore arms/hands, because now they too can enjoy all the benefits of cast iron cooking.....without a matching gym membership. (Shown: SOLIDTEKNICS AUSfonte BIGskillet 32cm (13"))

Problem 2: Cast iron pan handles always get too hot to handle on stove-top, particularly on high gas flame.

SOLID Australian solution:

(Click here for YouTube video demo/explanation)

How: Re-engineer the traditional old short, stubby cast iron skillet handles, putting the iron only where it is needed to carry the weight and provide comfort and leverage for relatively heavy iron pans. Split the neck into two tall thin beams around a large air gap for maximum surface area, so more heat is dispersed, just like the fins on air-cooled motorcycle cylinders. As you can see the handle doesn't become too hot at the hand end. (Oh, doesn't apply to baking inside hot ovens, naturally!) (Shown: SOLIDTEKNICS AUSfonte Sauteuse pan, 24cm (9.5"))

Sure, these solutions aren't exactly rocket science.....they're not even digital.....but they are probably world-firsts for cast iron pans. If so, it took several thousands of years for iron pan handles to be reinvented for higher performance. Apart from a long and intensive development processs, all it took was a passion for cooking great food, and a fresh set of highly trained engineering eyes.....perhaps an old engineer from a young culture that's not wedded to long-standing traditions? It also took a new engineering development company determined to manufacture their products locally, in Australia, and needing some serious innovation to compete with cheap imports.

Whatever the history, I'm sure you'll agree it's a remarkable achievement for the first two pieces of cookware to come from SOLIDTEKNICS Australia. With 3 more patents pending, and intensive R&D ongoing, you can bet there will be more surprises coming from these Aussie engineers in 2015!

Visit the SOLIDTEKNICS website for more details, and join their SOLID Followers newsletter list to be the first to hear about each new launch: 

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Where to find AUSfonte pans?

♥ AUSfonte Sauteuse pans are available in Australia and the USA (soon also the UK), in stores or online:  

♥ The AUSfonte BIGskillet is only available on Kickstarter until Feb 17, 2015, as a limited 'First Edition' casting, then available in stores from April (as regular 'Cast' edition):

Why Kickstarter? 

SOLIDTEKNICS always launches new models on Kickstarter to help crowdfund the significant Australian die costs. In appreciation of the Kickstarter backers who pledge to make the vision a reality, SOLIDTEKNICS ships them a pan cast with ‘First Edition, and the casting date, to make their pans rarest and most highly collectible heirlooms.

delve deeper:


♥ Health benefits of cast iron cooking:

Video links:

      Easy and fast cast iron seasoning and care video:
      How nonstick is seasoned cast iron really? 
      Video evidence: world’s first stay-cool cast iron handle:
      AUSfonte Australian foundry casting action video:

♥ Detailed cast iron seasoning and care advice:

♥ Lots of good Facebook posts to share:

 ♥ The BIGskillet Kickstarter campaign, closing Feb 17: