As readers of this column already know, I’ve uncovered some real finds over the years at yard sales, thrift stores and flea markets. At a recent community rummage sale, I spotted a rusted-over vintage cast iron corn stick pan in the bottom of a box filled with other neglected kitchen items. The pan was the treasure among the castoffs, and although it would take some doing, I knew the pan could be refurbished and restored for use for years to come. So, home the pan went and without much trouble at all, I had a fully reconditioned pan, ready to join the other well-used and functional cast iron cookware in my kitchen. After seasoning, the newly acquired pan produced some picture-perfect corn sticks, which literally fell out of the pan after they were baked. Owners of cast iron sometimes encounter “sticking” problems with their equipment – an indication that it’s time to re-season the cast iron and get it back to where it’s meant to be. (See re-seasoning tips from Lodge Manufacturing Company following today’s recipes.) After enjoying corn sticks for breakfast, someone at the table winked and said, “These would taste good at dinner, maybe with some ribs.” And, so they did, served along with tender barbecued ribs and some baked beans, as well. Grilling ribs is fun, but so is cooking with cast iron. And just like food – with seasoning added.
Sue Ade is a syndicated food writer with broad experience and interest in the culinary arts. She has worked and resided in the Lowcountry of South Carolina since 1985 and may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.