Le Creuset cookware is an investment, but it will someday become an heirloom for your family or friends! Whether you have just one piece or a whole set, we’ll go over some tips for keeping your enameled cast iron cookware looking and cooking great for decades to come. When it comes to longevity of your cookware, proper care and maintenance is key.
Le Creuset is well known for its vibrant colors and strong enamel coating over a nearly indestructible cast iron. These attributes give these pots and pans a durable nonstick and non-reactive cooking surface. The thick cast iron holds up to high temps and keeps your food warmer longer. They also make for a beautiful serving dish and showpiece for your main entrée. Perfect for a wide array of cooking techniques, a Le Creuset French oven is my go-to pot for wonderful soups and stocks. It makes the perfect vessel for long braises or baking breads because you can load them directly into a hot oven, lid and all. Not to mention the braiser is my absolute favorite for shallow or deep frying!
My top tip for keeping your enamel coating looking and functioning like new is to only use wooden or silicone utensils with Le Creuset. These materials will leave little to no marking or scratching thus your enamel stays shiny. Avoid steel wool, metal utensils, and coarse scouring pads when cleaning. For stained enamel, try filling the pot or pan with hot water and a cap of bleach, allow to soak for 35 minutes to an 1 hour. Wash with soapy water and rinse well. Another trick is to fill the pan partway with hot water and 1-2 tablespoons of baking soda, and use a damp cloth to scrub the stains. The baking soda acts as an abrasive. My favorite items for cleaning my Le Creuset is the “scrub daddy” sponge and even better for stains or grease is the “Mr. Clean magic eraser.” It works wonders with hot soapy water!
You can also persevere the integrity of your Le Creuset by hand washing and drying immediately. A mild dish detergent such as Dawn is ideal. Before washing or running under water let the cookware come to room temperature, as dramatically changing the temperature can cause hairline fractures in the enamel or cast iron.
f you don’t have any Le Creuset cookware but you love food and enjoy cooking, there’s no better time to stop by our Lincoln Square store and see the cookware we have in stock! Or sign up for one of our many classes where we cook with Le Creuset. For those proud owners of this wonderful cookware, go and give your pots and pans some cleaning love, then make this recipe!
Curried Chickpea Stew
Scroll down for a printable version of this recipe
Yield: 4-6 servings
Total time: 55 minutes
1/4 cup olive oil, plus more for serving
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1 large yellow onion, chopped
1 (2-inch) piece ginger, finely chopped
1/2 jalapeño pepper
Chard stems, sliced
Kosher salt and black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons ground turmeric
2 teaspoons curry powder
1 teaspoon garam masala
1 tablespoon sambal
2 cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 can full-fat coconut milk
2 cups vegetable or chicken stock
1 bunch Swiss chard, stems removed and sliced thin
1/2 cup mint or cilantro leaves
Yogurt for garnish
1. Heat the oil and pan together over medium heat and add the garlic, onion and ginger. Allow to sauté until lightly caramelized around the edges, stirring occasionally. Then add the jalapeno and sliced stalks from the chard.
2. Add the spices and sambal, cook for a minute or two until the spices are fragrant then add the chickpeas. Cook stirring frequently to slightly fry the chickpeas making sure to scrape the bottom of the pan with a wooden spatula or spoon to prevent any burning.
3. Use the wooden spatula or spoon to crush up some of the chickpeas, this will slightly thicken the soup via the starches in the chickpeas. Add the stock, coconut milk, salt and pepper.
4. Bring to a simmer, scraping the bottom of the pan to release any fond or brown bits. Cook stirring occasionally for 30-40 minutes or until the stew has thickened. Adjust the seasoning and add the chard leaves. Cook for another 5 minutes.
5. Serve with chopped herbs and a dollop of yogurt.
To learn techniques behind making stocks and soups, don't miss our upcoming Essential Building Blocks on Friday, April 7 at 9am at Lincoln Square. In this hands-on intensive class, you'll learn the fundamentals of how to confidently make better decisions in the kitchen, cook delicious meals by opening your taste buds, and explore the basic science and techniques all cooks should know.