Carbon Steel Wok Seasoning Failure

Discussion in 'Cooking Equipment Reviews' started by nomad12321, Aug 16, 2014.

  1. nomad12321

    nomad12321

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    Hi,

    I tried seasoning my Joyce Chen carbon steel wok I bought from amazon; It was the highest rated one they had on the site.  So I followed the instructions.  I washed it with soap and water real good.  Turned my electric burner on high.  Put the wok on the burner with peanut oil and proceeded to coat the entire wok on high heat painstakingly making sure the burner was on each part of the wok.  I then used the paper towel on a pair of tongs to remove any black residue.  There was no black residue.  I let the wok cool.  I rinsed the oil out without soap.  Then did it all over again 3 more times.  I then cooked with it.  I rinsed out the wok without using a soap or any abrasive surface and set it out overnight.  The next morning, it looked as though the wok had aged 30 years.  It was super rusty all over the inside.  I've tried scrubbing the rust out, but I would say 30% of it remains.  Did I do something wrong, or have I just been bamboozled?  I'm pretty sure this wok is ruined unless I use steel wool or sand paper, which I've read also ruins the wok.  Also, how are we expected to store an oiled wok?  Should I put it in the drawer with the rest of my pots and pans so that it can get those greasy too?  Should I give the wok its own drawer?  Should I store it in a plastic bag?  This all a whole lot of work but which seems like almost no return on my investment.

    Any help or guidance would be greatly appreciated,

    Nomad12321
     
  2. grande

    grande

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    Make sure it's dry! Otherwise the carbon steel will rust, no matter what. Do a search as there have been several other wok.seasoning threads recently.
    Carbon steel is desireable for its high conductivity but does require a bit of care. Once you "make friends" it will last for years.
    It shouldn't be so greasy that you can't store it. The seasoning will develop more on the outside first, maybe store it on a paper towel until you don't need to keep it oiled on the outside. If it's seasoned it won't be really greasy.
    A good trick is to quickly reseason it after washing it
    Try scrubbing it out w/salt and oil or baking soda to get rid of the rust.
     
  3. nicko

    nicko Founder of Cheftalk.com Staff Member

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  4. Iceman

    Iceman

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    Aside from phatch being the expert, here's what I do. My wok comes out of the cabinet w/ some rust any/every time I use it. No big deal. I let it get hot for a minute, then I splash in some oil and let it coat the entire inside, then I wipe everything out with some nice brown industrial-type paper towels. Good-to-go in 3-5 minutes. I'm not saying that is the "correct" way (I don't know, maybe it is. LOL.). I'm saying that it's My way, and I've never had any problems.
     
  5. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    Go visit the Wok Shop website in San Francisco:  http://www.wokshop.com/

    Here's their video on wok seasoning:  



    As to me, I simply washed my new wok in soap and water, towel dry.  Then after it was thoroughly rubbed with peanut oil, it was placed into a 450F oven for around four hours before shutting down the heat.  I did this whole procedure twice before beginning to cook with it.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 17, 2014
  6. brianshaw

    brianshaw

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    Two things for you to consider: maybe thge wok wasn't really dry enough after being washed. Dry then heat it up to make sure it is dry before storing. You may be expecting too much too fast for the seasoning. Clean it up, reseason (in the oven this time) and use, use, use the wok. That is the real secret to seasoning!
     
  7. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    Two thoughts. 

    You either burned off what seasoning you had established or

    You only seasoned to the brown plasticky stage.