Flax/Linseed Oil Source?

Discussion in 'Lye-Based Soap Forum' started by BrewerGeorge, Dec 1, 2016.

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  1. Dec 1, 2016 #1

    BrewerGeorge

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    Does anybody know of a source for this stuff at a decent price? I'm looking for a middle ground between cheap hardware store linseed and expensive little bottles of bespoke organic flax from Whole Foods.

    I want to use it primarily for seasoning cast iron, so the probably-hexane-extracted hardware stuff is out of the running, and the organic stuff is often 1st press and not particularly "clean" of other organic compounds than pure oil.

    Anybody used it in soap? It's got the highest linolenic number I've ever seen. What does linolenic do for soap? A couple sources online say it is extremely mild, but that is all I can find. I would expect it to make a very hard, plasticy bar for the very reason it is good for seasoning pans, but I'd love to hear anybody's actual experience.
     
  2. Dec 1, 2016 #2

    Arthur Dent

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    I'll be interested in how that works out for you BG. I have read that as a cast iron seasoning it looks great but tends to flake off after a while, though many people swear by it. I still use mostly Crisco and sometimes lard, and am happy with the results from both.
     
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  3. Dec 1, 2016 #3

    earlene

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    Soaper's Choice 7 pounds currently at $16.38 for the cheaper quality.

    Yes, I have used it in soap. On Aug. 14, 2015, 15 month ago, I made several single oil soaps and one was Flax, using health-food-store bought flax oil, so it was on the expensive side.

    I just washed my hands with it to refresh my memory, as well as looking at my notes. Today the soap is still about as dark as honey or light maple syrup like it was from day one. It also still smells very much like Flax Oil smells in the bottle, which is rather a strong smell for soap. In washing my hands, it produces lots of small to medium sized bubbles and proficient lather of the same honey-color as the soap itself. My hands feel a slight bit too tight and a tiny bit shiny, so if I were to use it in soap recipes, I wouldn't use it in large percentages. I washed them about 5 minutes ago at this writing.

    It thickened very fast and also set up very fast, per my notes.

    ETA: You mentioned hardness and plasticyness. Hardness, I don't know that I'd say it's very hard, but it's not real soft either. Sort of a middle ground hardness. I don't know about 'plasticy' as I am not quite sure how that looks or feels in soap.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2016
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  4. Dec 1, 2016 #4

    kchaystack

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    Linolenic and linoleic oils both tend to go rancid fast and cause DOS from what I have read.
     
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  5. Dec 1, 2016 #5

    BrewerGeorge

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    I'm getting ready to do the strip, sand-down, and re-season process on my cheap Lodge set. I've always been relatively happy with them until I got my hands on an old Griswold. That smooth clay-cast is so incredibly superior to the modern sand-cast, and sanding is a good way to replicate it. As for flaking, there is an etching process with hydrogen peroxide that is supposed to help the seasoning stick, and very light coats help as well.

    I'll try to remember to report back.
     
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  6. Dec 1, 2016 #6

    mx6inpenn

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    My husband has spent a lot of time and effort on our cast iron. He tried cleaning in a lye bath as well as the elecro-something (can't remember off the top of my head) method. His preferred oil for seasoning is still the old tried and true cleaned bacon grease.
     
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  7. Dec 1, 2016 #7

    Scooter

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    Whoa... this is strange. I have been researching this very thing. Canter's method looks very good.

    Scooter
     
  8. Dec 1, 2016 #8

    Scooter

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    I'm interested in how this turns out, too. I have some vintage Wagner that just needs to be stripped and reseasoned, I think.

    Also, have you ever cooked with carbon steel? I have not but I've been thinking of getting a Matfer carbon steel pan to see how the slickness/durability compares to CI.

    Scooter
     
  9. Dec 1, 2016 #9

    DeeAnna

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  10. Dec 1, 2016 #10

    Scooter

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    There are tons of different how-to videos on the net concerning this... here is one of my favorites. I have not done this yet but it looks more efficient and easier than using an angle grinder...and there are tons of videos to be found on that too...

    [ame]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gGLV7fd0-fQ[/ame]

    Scooter
     
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  11. Dec 1, 2016 #11

    BrewerGeorge

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    The only carbon steel I have is my big wok. The one so big that I use it on the turkey fryer burner outside instead of the stove. Works great and certainly lighter than cast iron.

    If you want to try carbon steel on the cheap, check out an Asian market.
     
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  12. Dec 1, 2016 #12

    Steve85569

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    BLO ( boiled linseed oil) from the hardware store is NOT food grade.
    It does work on wood like gun stocks , ax handles and the like. Not so much for fence boards - horses love the taste.
     
  13. Dec 1, 2016 #13

    GingerL

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    I've done flaxseed oil seasoning on a couple of skillets and an old cornstick pan, and haven't had any flaking issues. I think the secret is very thin coats - wipe some oil on then use a cloth to wipe as much off as you can - and to keep the oven temps between 450 and 500. Put the oiled pan into a cold oven, heat to 450 or so and hold for an hour. Turn off the heat and let the pan cool for an hour or two. I repeated this cycle 6 times and was pleased with the result. I got my oil from the health food store - I've read that if the flaxseed oil doesn't require refrigeration, it's not pure flaxseed oil. The oil is expensive, but you don't use very much.
     
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  14. Dec 2, 2016 #14

    CaraBou

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    Love my skillet, which I got used for $7 at a flea market over 17 years ago. Since I started soaping I mostly maintain it (on the stovetop) with avocado oil, since that's handy and withstands relatively high heat. I'm no aficionado though, and am open to pointers. I can say that I have a nice smooth finish, have never had any flaking :)shock:), and rarely have anything stick that can't be rinsed away with simple water -- or at most, a scrape with a stainless steel spatula.

    I have a crazy cast iron story tell... but out of respect for the Brewer I'll wait til this thread settles down a bit...
     
  15. Dec 2, 2016 #15

    BrewerGeorge

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    Don't mind me. Go for it!
     
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  16. Dec 3, 2016 #16

    CaraBou

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    Alright then... but I’m warning you, this needs context.

    It was 1993, way deep in Mexico's jungle near the Guatemala border. We're talking real rainforest, with howler monkeys, toucans, and giant scorpions (go ahead, ask me). I was about 25, a graduate student, foot loose and fancy free by today’s standards. My man at the time was a rafting fool who scored a gig floating wealthy clients on a 7 day trip down the Usumacinta River. There was no way I’d miss that adventure so I copped out of classes and volunteered as a “swamper.” That’s basically a grunt who does everything but row or get paid -- prep food, cook food, clean dishes, set up and tear down camp, tend the portable toilet, haul water and gear, troubleshoot problems, and anything else to help the boatmen and keep the paying people happy.

    We drove over 2,000 miles from Tucson in a six-pack truck with the two guys who hired us. There were several roadblocks with armed Federales who let us go quickly for just a few bucks; that was scary to me, but our bosses had done this before. I also remember peeing in a pineapple field, the first one I ever saw. :p

    At a warehouse a couple hours from the river we sorted through gear they had stored since their last trip. Tents, stoves, coolers, and yes, cast iron dutch ovens, the cookware of kings! But it wasn't all so good.

    “Hmmm, what’s that fuzz? Pew, don’t take the lid off, just put it back on the shelf! Or throw it out. $#*! – really, we have to take it with us?? Okay then, you open it. Wait – don’t puke – that’ll just make things worse! Here, I’ll do it. Eeeeeew! Is that what happens to lasagna after 30+ days in tropical heat??”

    I scraped that crap out of there the best I could. Boss man said not to use dish soap, to which I replied “fire me.” But it was seasoned perfectly and rebounded nicely. We ended up cooking many scrumptious meals in it. And no one got sick. Now I'm never phased by the unconventional cleaning methods that accompany cast iron!
     
  17. Dec 3, 2016 #17

    houseofwool

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    Seriously Cara, I wish you were closer so we could talk over coffee or drinks!
     
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  18. Dec 3, 2016 #18

    houseofwool

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    I use the refrigerated linseed oil from the local health food store to season mine. Spending a week seasoning my Lodge pan from Target evened out most of the imperfections from the sand cast process. I really wish they would go back to clay cast though. It makes such a difference.
     
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  19. Dec 3, 2016 #19

    IrishLass

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    Right here, silly!
    I've been meaning to re-season mine with flax oil, but haven't done so yet.

    I recently read all about Canter's method in one of my Cook's Illustrated cookbooks (the '2000 Recipes From 20 years of America's Most Trusted Food Magazine edition). For what its worth, it was their 'Test Kitchen Tip No. 118' on page 581. Anyway, they tried it out in their test kitchen and were so impressed with the results that they highly recommend it as being a superior way to season cast iron, and even included the directions for Canter's method in their book, along with a little scientific explanation of what makes it a superior method.

    I'm planning on using the refrigerated Barlean's flax oil I normally buy from my local health-food store. I always have some on hand to add to my smoothies.


    IrishLass :)
     
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  20. Dec 3, 2016 #20

    penelopejane

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    Even boiled linseed oil encourages mold when used as a wood preservative. DH uses olive oil to season the BBQ.
     

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