My husband loves his cast iron pans! He's already got a collection of them, but every time he goes to a thrift store, he looks for more. He bought cactus and corn on the cob muffin pans for under $5 at our local Goodwill. It was quite the bargain.
I cleaned them up and "seasoned" them, which means I rubbed vegetable oil on them and let them bake in a hot oven for about an hour or so. Then, I let them cool before I made corn muffins.
So, what are the benefits of using cast iron? It cooks your food evenly; it virtually lasts forever; and, it's healthier for you. Over time, non-stick pans lose their coating, which goes into your food. We are planning to remove our non-stick cook ware and replace it with more cast iron and stainless steel pots and pans in the near future.
The muffins that I made came out so well in our new cast iron muffin pans. We ate a few of them up last night with our meal, and we'll be eating them again tonight! They came out really light and crispy around the edges. I got the following recipe from Camp Ironwood's cookbook called, Come and Dine.
3/4 cup cornmeal
1 cup flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup melted margarine
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Combine the dry ingredients thoroughly. Add all moist ingredients at once; mix just until moistened with large lumps gone. Grease pan(s) or use paper cupcake liners. (If you're using cast iron, spray it with canola oil cooking spray.) Bake muffins for 10-15 minutes, until set and golden. Yield: 12 muffins