SOLIDTEKNICS is a development engineering company, pioneering a new cookware industry for Australia. We do not have a warehouse full of cheap imports to sell at high profit margins. If you know us, you will know that we are not here to make fast money with SOLIDTEKNICS: we are carefully and patiently building a multi-generation brand based on cooking innovations of multi-century durability.
Q, How do I season my new pan?
Please do refer to our instructions page 'before use' www.solidteknics.com/ironcare and once seasoned your pan will be as perfect (or beautifully imperfect) as all iron pans! As you season your pans, you will find it start to turn black in colour - this is a great thing.
I have added the seasoning instructions here for you (though we do recommend running your eyes over the above link too as the videos on that page are invaluable).
How to season:
1. Oven-season for corrosion-resistance: With cotton or paper towel, wipe a seed oil, rice bran oil, canola oil or shortening over ENTIRE pan very thinly, so that all of the visible oil is gone and the surface only appears polished (essentially wipe on and wipe off again). Place pan upside down in approximately 480° F / 250°C oven for 1 1/2 hours, then switch off heat and cool in oven for a half hour. Repeat 1-3 times to establish the best seasoning foundation.
2. Stove-top season for best natural nonstick: Heat pan to high on stove, drop in a teaspoon of one of the seasoning oils above and wipe all around with a paper towel (held in tongs for safety). Continue wiping for around 20 seconds as the pan smokes, ensuring oil is polished on very thinly and doesn't pool or remain in lumps. Take off heat and cool for several minutes, then repeat cycle 3-6 times until pan is glossy black and smooth on cooking surface. Ensure strong air extraction and ventilation to avoid breathing smoke.
Seasoning will improve with more seasoning and cooking with fats/oils, as long as you wash correctly to save as much of the black seasoning as possible.
Here is a great video of the boss (Mark) in action using the stove-top method - https://youtu.be/OqhZPSwPJbI
Q, Do the handles get hot?
Our handles are well known for not getting too hot in normal stovetop cooking. We're mechanical engineers, and we found a way to heavily reduce the heat conduction up handle (vents in neck are carefully placed). So, despite our pans being made from a single monobloc of highly conductive ferritic material (not regular austenitic stainless), you can usually lift them with bare hand. It's our long handles that don't get too hot (and short handles too, if not over open flame). Also, if we added rubber or plastic insulation, like all the importers, we wouldn't have a multi-century durable product. There's lots of independent reviews on this innovation all over the web, and discussions on our members group: www.facebook.com/groups/solidteknicsusers/ .
We hope you have the change to try this engineering marvel for yourself!
Q, My pan seems to have a bow in it?
Our pans are designed with the correct concave to compensate for expansion/contraction. We're mechanical engineers and put it in to compensate for the movement of the base at high temperature. Otherwise the pan would bow out convex, becoming a 'spinner' on smooth stove tops: far worse than a little concave when the pan is relatively cool. The small amount of concave doesn't affect cooking performance, even on infrared or electric hot plates. We have done lots of research into finding the perfect concave. All good quality large steel and cast iron pans need a concave base. Thus, some concave is good, a 2-3 mm curve/bow is fine and perfectly normal when hot, for most cooking (varies with temp). The most uneven movement comes from small high power induction or electric on large pans, where the centre of the pan moves a lot more than outer edges.
TIP: It is important that the burner is well matched to the pan size.
Q, My pan seems to have developed some rust.
Basically, you just scrub off the rust with a scouring pad, then season your pan again to protect it from further rust. The best thing about cast and wrought iron cookware is it's forever renewable. Rust or seasoning problems are easily fixed, unlike synthetic coated pans that are disposable if there's a problem or they wear out.
Here's another video about restoring a rusted pan: www.youtube.com/watch?v=CIU1_pHAxcU
Q, My eggs are sticking.
The most common error when cooking eggs in cast and wrought iron cookware is frying without oil/butter (or not enough), overcooking and using too much heat. Cooking like this is not unusual for those who've mainly cooked eggs on Teflon, but a different technique is necessary with iron.
Everyone who seasons the pans well finds them as nonstick as the video clip. Our Satin finish is no different to cast iron, when they're all well-seasoned: it's just that our Satin finish is easier to season. Once the texture is ‘buried’ under sufficient seasoning layers, it doesn't matter what's underneath. See video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rXCPU7Qn_xk
Q, Burnt on food.
For really tough clean ups like the burned and stuck foods, it is better to scrape with a wood or even metal scraper than it is to soak or use detergents. If there's some really stubborn spots you could use a scourer (or even sandpaper!). You can't hurt the iron. You may take off some seasoning, but that's also not a problem because it's so easy to build up again by following our instructions nad /or just cooking in fats/oils. That is the beauty of seasoned iron pans: they are forever fixable and renewable. Mistakes like this in synthetic pans can often mean disposal to landfill!
Q, Why can I see black specks in my food or on a cloth?
It is quite common in cast iron cooking for paper towels to pick up residue like that. Usually the residue is just tiny pieces of cooked food that lodge in the pores of the seasoning and are lifted out by the paper, if the pan is well-seasoned. If the residue is more grey and the pan is lightly seasoned or patchy, that would indicate cast iron residue and more seasoning would be beneficial (sometimes even well-seasoned pans erode with lots of washing and not much cooking with oil or fatty meats).
Either situation is common and not a problem. If your pan is well-seasoned you could occasionally wash it with soap to really clean it out of all tiny food particles. In between, lots of rinsing/brushing after each meal is normally enough to keep the residue to a minimum.
Q, What utensils should I use?
The types of utensils aren't too important to seasoned iron, of any brand, because the seasoning is basically 'self-healing', in that any scratches from hard utensils are usually quickly filled in by cooking with oils. Of course wooden tools are always preferred for maximum protection of the seasoning, but metal is fine (similar to our recommendation for scraping under hot water if anything sticks).
For pancakes be sure the pan is well-seasoned, then use a good amount of butter, particularly if the pan is new and hasn't built up the ideal seasoning, which always takes lots of cooking time.
Q, How do I clean my pan?
We do recommend that after every use whilst the pans are still new, you clean then this way.
1. After cooking, simply scrape out under hot running water while the pan is still very warm. Do not use soap, as it will erode the seasoning. Use a wooden or steel scraper to remove food residue, then you may finish up with a brush, but be careful not to take off too much of that beautiful black seasoning that you have achieved!
2. While the pan is still very warm, dry thoroughly with a paper towel. Apply a thin layer of oil and store. Once a pan is well-seasoned, cleaning can be as easy as wiping out with a paper towel.
Q, Can I use induction?
AUS-ION™ wrought iron and nöni™ ferritic wrought stainless cookware work with any heat source, including induction. Being a solid dense sheet iron (not cast) and they heat very efficiently, and evenly. They are also safe on any surface, including ceramic/glass tops. They are perfect in any oven (except microwave!), and also tough enough for camp cooking on an open flame.....for many generations. Guaranteed.
Q, My pan has discoloured.
It's bare iron, it's designed to discolour.....exactly as they have for two thousand years. We didn't change that because it is still the only natural non-toxic renewable nonstick known. There are prettier pans on the market, but they're either toxic, disposable, or sticky: sometimes all at once!
Q, So is the pan not made of chemicals?
Everything is made of chemicals, but we have the expertise to make cookware from the right chemicals! All non-toxic with no heavy metals and no synthetic coatings. Seasoned iron is widely known to be the only non-toxic nonstick ( http://bit.ly/1Rk2M0z ) , and our ferritic stainless steel isn't the common nickel-based austenitic stainless steel used in cookware (lots of benefits flow from that, including no leaching of nickel). World-first (patents pending) seamless one-piece wrought construction loved by chefs and home cooks ( www.solidteknics.com/testify ). Multi-century durability. Made in Australia. Exported. We're proud to be building an innovative new cookware industry in Australia.
Q, With the AUSfonte range no longer in production, how will Solidteknics handle warranty claims?
Discontinuing AUSfonte does not change our multi-century warranty. We will always replace any defective product, no matter which century it was purchased in. That is in writing for this generation to follow, and we will hand that on to coming generations as a solemn commitment (our products are designed to go on for many generations because the company was also designed to hand down for many generations). They say the 3rd generation can be tricky, but the values we're passing on now should take care of several generations of integrity and love for our supporters.
We hope they will carry the flame for heirloom cookware (and the many innovative cook's products coming) and pass it on from generation to generation. Everything we do is working towards that vision.
For more visit solidteknics.com/warranty