When I was but a young lass, not yet married, I decided to purchase a cast iron pot. It was a Dutch oven, critical, because you know how often 20-year-olds make soup. Anyway, I’m not sure why I decided cast iron was the way to go since, as far as I can recall, my mother never owned a cast iron pot. As it turned out, I rarely used the pot, and I certainly didn’t care for it in the appropriate manner. I’m sure every time I used it (which was probably about a total of five times) I cheerfully scrubbed it clean with soap and water and left it to dry in the sink. Tsk. Tsk.

Of course, it finally rusted, and as far as I was concerned, that meant it was time to throw it away, which I did. I replaced it with something made out of stainless steel and easy to clean.

It wasn’t until much later that I once again dipped my big toe into the cast iron pond (which actually sounds quite painful), and this time I followed the rules. I started out by seasoning the skillets by coating them in oil and placing them into the oven for the appropriate period of time. Each time I use the Lodge skillets (I now have six — a 6-inch, a12-inch, and a-13.25 inch, as well as a griddle in Denver and a 10.25-inch and a 13.25 inch in AZ — all with cast iron lids), I scrub them carefully with water only and dry them quickly. Every so often, I rub them with oil and put them in the oven again for a bit to season.

In my lowly opinion, Lodge cast iron is the way to go. I have a Paula Deen brand of cast iron griddle in AZ, and every time I make pancakes, they don’t brown properly. It’s not Paula’s fault. She can’t help it if her last name isn’t Lodge. I covet my cast iron. I would save it for our kids, but all of our kids have their own, having heard me sing the iron skillets’ praises. It will likely be among the many things that get tossed upon my death.

Yesterday, Amazon fed me the information that they have put a certain set of cast iron on sale. For a mere $49, I can purchase a Lodge cast iron Dutch oven with a 10.25-inch shallow skillet that — wait for it — doubles as the lid. It regularly sells for $79. I’m pretty sure my heart skipped a beat when I first took a gander at the set. While I have a Lodge enamel-covered cast iron Dutch oven already in AZ, I’m not always thrilled with the pot. It seems more difficult to clean than I think it should. And I’ve already mentioned that I am unhappy with my Paula Deen griddle and have been considering buying a Lodge griddle. It’s like a miracle. A Springtime Lodge Cast Iron Miracle.

Needless to say, I’m going to make the purchase just as soon as I return to the Valley of the Sun. Jen will probably not approve, because she has already said that she dislikes cast iron — whether it’s Paula Deen or Lodge — because she thinks they’re too heavy. I won’t argue their heaviness, but I will say that its heaviness is offset by its ability to go from stovetop to oven without missing a beat. Plus, she doesn’t fry chicken, a process which MUST be done in cast iron. I will remind her that when she made Ree Drummond’s mini pizzas, she used my cast iron pans. Just sayin’…..