How about adding a little diversity to your usual food prep aids. A wok can make a delightful addition to any kitchen. Whether you’re making the traditional wok stir fry or an original creation, the wok brings variety and diversity to any meal. There are a few things must be done in order to maintain the quality and longevity of the wok. Seasoning your new wok before it’s first use is a must. It helps prevent food build-up and keeps the wok from developing the common rust marks as they sometimes do. You will also need to season the wok before future uses. Here are a few tips to keep your wok in tip top shape from the first day you buy it through the many years to come.
1. Give it a good scrub-Yes, even a new wok needs scrubbed in warm water. Do not use detergent on the wok. This will remove the protective coating (it’s only purpose is for store display.) It’s okay for that to be removed. You wouldn’t want to cook in a wok with that coating still on it.
2. Heat that wonderful wok up-Turn the heat up and heat til the wok turns black. The discoloration is normal. It will remain black from now on. It may smoke, so you may need to open a window or turn on a fan for ventilation.
3. Oil the cooled wok-Oil that baby up. With a paper towel, oil the pan generously. Make sure the oil is worked into the entire pan well.
Tip: Do not pour oil in the hot pan, it may catch fire. Make sure the wok has completely cooled before adding oil) Peanut or corn oil also work great for wok seasoning.
4. A little more heat please-Sit the wok back on the burner over low heat. Leave it there for about fifteen minutes or so. This allows the oil to works its way into the wok. Some people prefer to put the oil and pan in the oven for this stage of seasoning. This method works just as well. Just be careful. The oil will be hot,hot,hot either way.
5. Cool, Wash & Dry, Oil Again-Take the wok from the heat and allow it to cool completely. Use a little hot water and cloth to wipe the wok out again,then dry it completely. You will probably want to add a little more oil to coat the wok at this time. Then, store the wok until you’re ready to use it.
This added meal diversity doesn’t require much upkeep. To enjoy your wok for years to come, be sure to season your wok between uses. Bamboo brushes work great for scrubbing the wok between seasonings. Remember, don’t use detergents to scrub with, just hot water. Be careful with the heat and oil, and most of all, enjoy those delectable wok cooked meals.