A rare glimpse into the making of Le Creuset

Ribollita in a Le Creuset 

If you peek into the cabinets of EYB Members, you will probably find plenty of enameled cast iron, and much of that bearing the Le Creuset brand. The fabled casseroles, dutch ovens, and other pans are a touchstone for many cooks. The durable cookware is often passed from one generation to the next, becoming a prized family heirloom. Now chef and author David Lebovitz gives us a rare glimpse into the making of the iconic enameled cast iron by writing about his tour of the Le Creuset factory, which is normally off limits to visitors.

The original Le Creuset foundry, started in 1925 in northern France, is still making cookware today in a process essentially unchanged for nearly a hundred years. The experience of watching the entire production – from molten iron being poured into sandcast molds to the spraying of the enamel coating – moved Lebovitz. He writes “It’s incredible to see people physically laboring over something, born of raw materials, then holding a beautiful piece of cookware that is the end result of their work.”

Le Creuset was started by two Belgians: one an enameling expert, the other a metal caster. The signature flame orange color “was modeled after the intense orange glow that comes out of the cauldron that they use to melt the iron.” Whether you have one workhorse pot or a collection of pieces, you’ll enjoy the photos and descriptions of what goes into making an heirloom pan.

Photo of Ribollita from Le Creuset, indexed by an EYB Member

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