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Thread: Smooth top electric range and cast iron skillet

  1. #1
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    Smooth top electric range and cast iron skillet

    In about a month I will be moving into a condo in California. It has an electric range with the smooth top. I have never used an electric stove and am uneasy. I was told that I cant use an iron skillet on it. I do a lot of frying and am concerned about it. What is yall's experience with the electric stove? I have written for a manual, but dont know when I will get it.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by madpots View Post
    In about a month I will be moving into a condo in California. It has an electric range with the smooth top. I have never used an electric stove and am uneasy. I was told that I cant use an iron skillet on it. I do a lot of frying and am concerned about it. What is yall's experience with the electric stove? I have written for a manual, but dont know when I will get it.
    Madpots,

    Welcome to Calif. I have a smooth top electric stove but don't use cast iron at all so I don't know if it's okay to do so. I can tell you that if the bottom isn't smooth (for instance, an enameled canner) you aren't supposed to use it on the smooth cook top.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by catcancook View Post
    Madpots,

    Welcome to Calif. I have a smooth top electric stove but don't use cast iron at all so I don't know if it's okay to do so. I can tell you that if the bottom isn't smooth (for instance, an enameled canner) you aren't supposed to use it on the smooth cook top.
    I have a smooth top stove and I use whatever I want on it including a cast iron. The only thing I can think of why they may say not to is because it is heavy and if you drop it on the glass top it will crack. I have one saucepan that is not exactly flat on the bottom and if I need to boil water in it, it starts to rock. So I put water in something else and prop the handle of the saucepan against the back of the stove. It works. I really like the saucepan (copper bottom) and don't want to get rid of it. I think the smooth top stove is a lot easier to clean than the other types. Once in a while you have to clean it with this stuff sort of like Soft Scrub, also use a razor blade on the hard stuff.

  4. #4
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    I've got a smooth top electric and it even came with a cast iron griddle for the bridge burner. I don't use it because I don't use any cast iron any more, but there shouldn't be a problem. Like cookieee, I use whatever I want.

    When I got my stove, I realized that years of cooking on gas stoves had warped my Revere Ware and my two Calphalon saute pans. Calphalon replaced both pans with brand new ones because they have a lifetime guarantee. So does Revere Ware but I haven't gotten around to sending them in yet.
    With all of our running and all of our cunning, If we couldn't laugh, we would all go insane...
    "Changes in Attitude, Changes in Latitude" Jimmy Buffet

  5. #5
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    Ooops, madpots, you can look up the mfg brochure online at their website.
    With all of our running and all of our cunning, If we couldn't laugh, we would all go insane...
    "Changes in Attitude, Changes in Latitude" Jimmy Buffet

  6. #6
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    Mine is a smooth top ceramic, but it is induction (which is still electric).
    I simply put newspaper or a paper towel under the burner and put the pan on. Induction only heats metal so if I use a cast iron (not le creuset, with the enamel), the paper prevents any scratches. Best of all, if I pan fry anything, I spread the paper out and simply toss it when I'm done...clean up...zero.
    Thoreau said, 'A man is rich in proportion to the things he can leave alone.'

  7. #7
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    I have used electric stoves and flat top stove. ..decided to get a gas stove because I have better control of the
    heat. However I have used cast iron skillets on all the stoves with no problems.
    V.

  8. #8
    I have a smooth top range (ceramic glass from Jenn-Aire) and use cast iron, and whatever else I want. It's 10 years old and is fine. I had one before this and when it was about 10 years old, my sil dropped a wine glass on it from about a foot over the top, the wine glass was fine but the cooktop shattered into 10 million shards of glass. She was holding the glass and stirring a pot and talking.
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    Walking Towards Wellness, my personal challenge to walk 10,000 steps per day in 2014 while living with and managing a chronic illness. Walk with me.

  9. #9
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    One more Name:  icon14.png
Views: 2406
Size:  589 Bytes for using your cast iron on a smooth top electric stove.
    My DD has that kind and uses her cast iron skillets all the time (so do I when I'm cooking at her house). One caveat on the electric stove, though, be really careful at first until you get used to it. I find my DD's stove top cooks really hot and is hard for me to adjust the heat as easily as my gas stove. Once something gets up to desired heat, you have to turn it way down and be sure and watch the pot till you're happy it's where you want it -- it takes a while for the heat to readjust and I often have to clean boil over messes or end up burning things I'm frying because I am so much more accustomed to cooking with gas. It's a real learning experience, but if you know to expect it you're ahead of the game.
    ~ ~ Leslie ~ ~

  10. #10
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    It may depend on the bottom of your cast iron pans. If smooth, there would be less of an issue that if there is a rim on the bottom. (See my post on older cast iron pans.)

    I've never had a smoothtop range, but I cooked on electric stovetops for many years. I agree with syzygy that paying close attention till you get the hang of it will save considerable grief. One suggestion -- if you need to cool down or cool off a pot or pan quickly, move it to a cooler part of the range, as it takes longer for electric than gas to cool down.

    One good thing about many electric burners is that you can maintain a lower low than with gas. Don't know if this is true for a smoothtop.

    Good luck on the cooking and enjoy your new location!

    Kay

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by syzygy View Post
    One more Name:  icon14.png
Views: 2406
Size:  589 Bytes for using your cast iron on a smooth top electric stove.
    One caveat on the electric stove, though, be really careful at first until you get used to it. I find my DD's stove top cooks really hot and is hard for me to adjust the heat as easily as my gas stove. Once something gets up to desired heat, you have to turn it way down and be sure and watch the pot till you're happy it's where you want it -- it takes a while for the heat to readjust and I often have to clean boil over messes or end up burning things I'm frying because I am so much more accustomed to cooking with gas. It's a real learning experience, but if you know to expect it you're ahead of the game.
    This is exactly what I do! If a pan isn't totally smooth on the bottom, higher heat or longer use makes it ok. I can on my stove, and the canner bottom is ridged, but it works just fine -- may take a little longer to get up to heat, is all.
    Kay
    I'm a WYSIWYG person -- no subterfuge here!

  12. #12
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    Lightbulb

    Oh, what great suggestions! Thank yall so much. I am particularly intrigued by using newspaper or paper towels under the pots. I do a lot of frying and that sounds great.
    Also, I didn't know Revereware had a lifetime guarantee. I still have 3 of my original pots and one of them has a dent. Will they replace them after 66 years! I am certainly going to look into that.
    Oops - I always forget you can get anything online. New manual coming up today.
    Now I am real anxious to get moved and start cooking - but first comes packing!

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by madpots View Post
    Oh, what great suggestions! Thank yall so much. I am particularly intrigued by using newspaper or paper towels under the pots. I do a lot of frying and that sounds great.
    A word of caution, madpots -- if your new cooktop is just a regular smooth top, you can't do the paper trick because the burners still get hot, and you will end up starting a fire! It will only work on induction burners, which are different than the normal cooktop burners.
    ~ ~ Leslie ~ ~

  14. #14
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    *WARNING*
    My cooktop is INDUCTION electric, which means my cooktop never heats up....nothing boils onto it, spills wipe up, paper will not burn.
    DO NOT try this with a regular electric (not induction) cooktop or you will have FIRE!

    Induction is more responsive than gas for control and it makes less mess....but it does not compare to a smooth electric in any way except the glass portion.
    Thoreau said, 'A man is rich in proportion to the things he can leave alone.'

  15. #15
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    I don't know if it is induction - I know you can see the circles where the burners are. But I will be careful. Thanks for the warning.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by cookieee View Post
    I have a smooth top stove and I use whatever I want on it including a cast iron.

    Same here. When I moved to TX from CA it was a bit getting used to the electric, but it's ok (I'd prefer gas still). Just watch when you turn down a pot to simmer say, it takes a while for that change to happen, unlike on a gas burner).
    Everyone needs to believe in something. I believe I'll have another beer. . .

  17. #17
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    i don't have one, but my daughter and son in law say they have trouble making pancakes.

    i bought them a countertop pannini/grill/griddle for christmas.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by tidee View Post
    i don't have one, but my daughter and son in law say they have trouble making pancakes.

    i bought them a countertop pannini/grill/griddle for christmas.
    DH makes the pancakes in a 12" frypan, but I think the griddler may be a better option... If we ever have pancakes again , I'll mention it!
    Kay
    I'm a WYSIWYG person -- no subterfuge here!

  19. #19
    Nothing to say, but welcome to CA.

  20. #20
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    We ran into California codes - had to install double paned windows - understand it makes for more even temperature. Hope to be there in March. Thanks for the welcome.

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