Most newer cast iron pans are supposed to come "pre-seasoned" but I have found they usually need more.
The reason newer stainless steel and non-stick pans are advertised as "heating more evenly" or "cooking better" is because of how they sandwich certain metals in the bottom give better heat conductivity.
Cast iron pans are made of all cast iron, and the process really hasn't changed much - just became more automated.
A good seasoned cast iron pan is wonderful to use - if taken care of properly. They really don't stick and they are fairly indestructible.
Probably nothing but when I have an old well used cast iron pan I like to think that the years of meals lovingly made with with it imparts a little of the soul of the previous cook. My wife has her grandmother's cast iron pan. Her Nanna made hundreds of batches of corn bread in the old pan and her pan and recipe went to my wife who carries on the tradition, While I'm not going tpo get rid of my newer cookware (esp. my Scanpans) there is a charm of using something so old and useful.
Not really ... when it comes to cast iron, you're better off with the older ones, if you can get them ... otherwise, you need to season the pan yourself.
Technically, nothing, but if the older skillets have been used often, they they are "seasoned" which means they tend to stick less.
Are they worth the money? I have found they cost less. Do they heat up faster or cook any better? The newer ones I'm askin about
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Ok thx Colleen :-)