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13 January 2015

Spring Cleaning: How to clean and care for your Le Creuset

At Le Creuset as much as we love the cooking and of course the eating, we also know how important the cleaning can be.  We have put together some of our top tips for cleaning and caring for your Le Creuset cast iron pieces to ensure that they keep on providing all those memorable meals.


How to Clean Your Cast Iron

Each piece of Le Creuset enamelled cast iron cookware is of premium quality, individually designed for ease and versatility of use. The range is suited to all styles of cooking, and fits in any style of kitchen or dining decor. With proper care and use, your Le Creuset cast iron will go on producing delicious meals for a lifetime.


BEFORE FIRST USE

Remove all labels. Wash the pan in hot soapy water, rinse and dry thoroughly. Pans with enamelled cooking surfaces are now ready for use and require no further preparation.

HEAT SETTINGS

Medium and low heats will provide the best results for the majority of cooking, including frying and searing. Allow the pan to heat gradually and thoroughly, as this will give the most even and efficient cooking results. Once the pan is hot almost all cooking can be continued on lower settings.

High heats should only be used for boiling water for vegetables or pasta, or for reducing the consistency of stocks and sauces. High heats should never be used to pre-heat a pan before lowering the heat for cooking. Cast iron retains heat so well that if a pan is overheated in this way it will contribute to poor cooking results, sticking and discolouration of cooking surfaces.

Soup in Le Creuset Casserole

AFTER USE

Always cool a pan for a few minutes before washing in hot soapy water. Rinse and dry thoroughly.

Do not fill a hot pan with cold water or plunge into cold water as thermal shock damage to the enamel may occur.

If there are food residues fill the pan with warm water and leave to soak for 15 – 20 minutes, then wash in the usual way. Nylon or soft abrasive pads or brushes can be used to remove stubborn residues. Do not use metallic pads, or harsh abrasive cleaning agents that contain bleach or ammonia as these will damage the enamel and polished trims.

QUICK TIP

Although interior discolouration is very normal over the course of a casseroles lifespan and will not affect the cooking performance, to lighten these stains, boil up vinegar or lemon juice in your Le Creuset casserole or soak overnight with a dishwashing tablet dissolved in water.

Light stains or metal trail marks (caused by metal tools) can also be removed with Le Creuset Cookware cleaner known as Pots and Pans Cleaner. An occasional conditioning clean with this product will also retain the new appearance and polish of your pans.

LE CREUSET SATIN ENAMEL

Black enamel cooking surfaces will, over time, produce a patina (a brownish film). Do not attempt to clean this off as it actually enhances the cooking performance and food release from this surface. The pan can still be given a hot soapy wash, but it should not be scoured.

Satin Black enamel has a smooth satiny feel to it, but it is not as glossy or smooth as other lighter enamel finishes. It has been especially designed for high “surface” temperature cooking – which is not the same as simply using a piece on a high heat, which can be very detrimental. With cast iron, high surface temperatures can be achieved by allowing any piece to heat through evenly on a medium setting on any stove top.

After cooking allow the pan or grill to cool down. When possible rinse the pan in hot water and wipe over the surface with a damp cloth. This may be possible if the pan is used for regular cooking of foods where the food residues are minimal. For more thorough washing use hot soapy water, then rinse and dry thoroughly.

To remove stubborn or sticky residues fill the pan with warm soapy water and leave to soak for 10-15 minutes. Wash rinse and dry in the usual way. Do not use any scourers or abrasive cleaners on the cooking surface.  Exterior marks, such as burnt on fat deposits, can be lightly scoured using a nylon pad, or can be cleaned off with a soft nylon brush and regular use of the Le Creuset Pots and Pans cleaner.

To encourage the build-up of the patina, after washing,  a small amount of canola or vegetable oil can be used to season the pan with paper towel.


To view the complete Le Creuset range, visit any Le Creuset Boutique Store or shop online at www.lecreuset.co.za where we offer free delivery in South Africa.

Comments

  1. Benita

    Hi there. How do I clean the exterior of my kettle. Seems like watermarks. Soaked it in warm soapy water, doesn’t look any better. Dark gun metal color.

    • Thanks for your query Benita. We recommend taking the kettle to your nearest Le Creuset Boutique Store where a store manager will assess and assist.

  2. Liezel

    My kettle is rusting a lot inside. I’ve had the kettle for a few years now. I dont have thr proof of purchase anymore can the store exchange it for me?

    • Hi Liezel, we’re sorry to hear about your kettle. Kindly take this to your nearest Le Creuset Boutique Store where a store manager will assess and assist.

  3. Jo Mackenzie

    I bought an black kettle about three years ago and being an avid coffee drinker have used it religiously everyday. In the last month I have noticed rust inside on the base and after cooking baking soda and lemon juice in it as I saw on this site I still have the rust there. What if any suggestions?

    • Hi Jo, we’re sorry to hear about your kettle. Kindly take this to your nearest Le Creuset Boutique Store where a store manager will assess and assist.

  4. Jamie Quadrardo

    Hi.. again my kettle has rusted inside and also popped in the top.. mine isn’t the only on as a friends did the same.. this is my second kettle.. what should I do now?

    • Hi Jamie, We’re sorry to hear about your kettle. Kindly take this to your nearest Le Creuset Boutique Store where a store manager will assess and assist.

  5. Tony

    Hi
    I have a pale blue cast iron 22cm casserole dish which is badly discoloured on the outside. Can’t shift the stains with normal washing – and they’re getting steadily worse. Any ideas?

  6. Cathie

    I have a tea kettle with rust around the rim where the lid meets the base of the kettle. I love my kettle and use it daily but don’t like that it looks “old” Are the rust marks permanent or can they be cleaned with something? Seeking your expertise!

    • Thanks for your query Cathie. We would advise taking the kettle to your nearest Le Creuset boutique store for assessment – our knowledgeable sales team will be able to further assist.

  7. Andrew

    What to do recommend to clean the bottom of the THF (non-stick pans) pan that touches the stove. The aluminum elements develops a brown covering that I would like to remove. Thanks Andtrew.

  8. Donna

    I love my Le Creuset kettle but….The the enamel on the interior of my kettle has gotten rough. I don’t know if this is a defect or if it is safe to continue using it in this condition or if there a way to clean it. It is not discolored. It is less than a year old and only used to boil water on a gas stove.

    Thank you for your help.

    • Thanks for your query Donna, we would advise taking the kettle to your nearest Le Creuset boutique store for assessment.

  9. Judy

    How do I stop food sticking. I have had my shallow casserole for years but only used once because the food stuck to it so badly. It was a stuffed monk fish recipe

  10. Nicole

    How do I remove the marks on the outside of the orange enamels pans- blackened at the sides .? Thanks

  11. Kate B

    Hi
    Do you have any suggestion with regards what appears to be damage from a metal spoon? My grown up son scrambled some egg in the pan. They’re about 35 years old, orange with white enamel interior.
    Thank you

  12. TJ

    Dear Le Creuset: How do I clean the exterior bottom of a cast iron pot that has enamel paint on the bottom that developed black spots? I believe they probably developed as a result of food residue that was on my glass cooktop. I tried Bar Keeper’s Friend, but the spots won’t come off the pot. I know your company doesn’t recommend a scouring pad, but that seems to be the only thing that gets the spots off. Then the black spots are also causing browning of my glass cooktop. So it’s an endless cycle. Second question, I have Le Creuset pots with enamel paint on the bottom and other Le Creuset pots with a black finish on the bottom. Is it OK to use a scouring pad on the pots with black finish on the bottom?

  13. Ted Hughes

    Hi, I have burnt some courgette jam on the bottom of my pan and it is very stubborn. Any suggestions, thanks Ted Hughes

    • Thanks for your comment, Ted. If there are food residues fill the pan with warm water and leave to soak for 15 – 20 minutes, then wash in the usual way. Nylon or soft abrasive pads or brushes can be used to remove stubborn residues. Do not use metallic pads, or harsh abrasive cleaning agents as these will damage the enamel and polished trims.

  14. Jabs

    Can I use my whistle kettle on a traditional coal/wood stove top??

    • Thanks for your comment Jabs! The whistling kettle is safe to use on these type of cooktops, including AGA, Rayburn etc.

  15. Amanda

    What can I clean the outside if my le Creuset kettle with? It’s in black.

    • Kinga

      How I can clean the surface of my white Le Creuset kettle ? Thank you.

      • Thanks for your comment Kinga. To clean, simply hand-wash the kettle with hot, soapy water and dry thoroughly. A gentle kettle de-scaler may be used periodically if required.

  16. Nancy Watkins

    Please instruct as to how to clean a pot interior that has been burned (ie, black coating all over the inside bottom). White interior, not black satin.

    Thank you.

    • Thanks for your comment Nancy. We would recommend leaving the casserole to soak in hot soapy water and then cleaning it with a non-abrasive scourer. Rinse and dry thoroughly. For best results, use Le Creuset Pots & Pans Cleaner which will assist with maintaining the condition of your cast iron.

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