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How to season Iron Tawa / Pan / Kadai:
When we buy a new Dosa Pan made of iron/cast iron or if the dosa pan is not giving dosas properly (with non-stick property), try the steps mentioned below to season it. This was taught to me by my mother-in-law and it works perfectly.
- When you are buying it new, it might have rust here and there; They would have applied oil and no one knows what oil it is. So to remove the dust and rust, we have to use the water drained from cooked rice (See How to Cook rice in a sauce pan and you can cook rice in the said way to get this water).
- You might get one or two glasses of this water. Add this to the new tawa / pan / kadai. If the vessel is bigger, the water might not be enough, so add more hot water to it till the vessel is fully loaded. If it is dosa tawa try to fill as much as possible.
- Leave this for 24 hours, wash it thoroughly and repeat the same for 2 more days. The vessel should come out clean. If the vessel is clean enough in a day or two you can proceed with the next step.
- Heat the vessel in low flame.
- Add castor oil say 2 to 3 tsp to it and spread it evenly to cover all over the vessel.
- Add 10 small sambhar onions (cut into 2 or 3 pieces) into it and let it boil in the oil for few minutes.
- Switch of the flame and let it cool down for some time. Carefully remove the vessel from the stove and keep it aside for another 24 hours. (The iron vessels are usually heavy. So take utmost care while handling them.)
- Repeat this onion oil therapy twice washing inbetween.
- After twice or thrice the vessel will get the property of a non-stick vessel but without any health hazard.
- While using it apply oil before adding anything else. Then start using as per your need.
- While storing it after cooking, if you are using it regularly, then just wipe it dry with a clean cloth after washing. If you using it only once in a while, dry with a clean cloth, apply coconut oil slightly all over and keep it to avoid rust formation.
- Iron vessels will give very tasty dosas, appams, and crispy curries, specially the potato curries, soya chunks masala curry, and lot more.
Hope this guides you on how to season the iron vessel and you would start using this.