Dating cast iron cookware
Despite the long-time endorsement of top chefs such as Julia Child who rated Descoware ahead of Le Creuset for its functionality, the fashion-conscious of America were hungry for more color variety and “trendy” designer looks.
By the late 1970’s, GHC, now struggling with profitability due to increased competition with it’s Magnalite Aluminum and Wagner Cast Iron lines, restructured itself and re-focused its energies back on the former two trademarks, which continued to be manufactured in Sidney, OH.
No special type of cookware is needed for the actual heating process -- but the ceramic top requires some consideration due to the potential for scratching or stains.
Magnetic cookware such as cast iron and magnetic steel is required to make the system function as intended.
The following article was not written for this site. The original was here: that site seems to have gone away. She praised it highly for its quality and durability. By the mid-1970’s, further loss of market share to Le Creuset (who had begun a very aggressive marketing campaign) and other French cookware manufacturers such as Cousances and Staub (another French culinary mainstay), combined with cheaper labor costs and raw materials readily available in Asia, led GHC to shift manufacture of its enameled cast iron line to Japan as well; however, this was short-lived, as the American market was not overly receptive to the new product (known as Finesse), even though it started offering the designer colors so craved by the buying public.
I (Kevin) don’t mean to trample on anyone’s copyrights… Descoware originally was known as Bruxelles Ware at its inception. The first Finesse products were made in Belgium, then later production moved to Japan.
(The latter two patterns are sometimes confused with DRU pieces from Holland, as they look strikingly similar.) NOTE: In addition to the above colors/patterns being released under license of the Descoware name, the following colors of enameled cast iron wares were also manufactured at the Oudenaarde foundry, marketed independently or under contract to other brands: Moss Green (solid color, unmarked), Jadeite green (solid color, unmarked) and Cornflower Blue (solid color, unmarked).
If you've had your cast iron skillet for a while, chances are it needs to be reseasoned—meaning it needs to be recoated to create a stick-resistant surface and guard against rust.
Well-seasoned cast iron cookware provides one of the best surfaces for cooking, since it heats foods evenly and can do just about anything - including go on the stove or in the oven.