I love finding old Le Creuset pieces out in the wild. I was at a flea market recently, and spotted a beautiful red pan sitting on the edge of a table full of junk.
I immediately recognized the pan as a small enameled cast iron roasting pan that I had lurked on eBay for in the past - it is the perfect size for fitting inside my small countertop oven that I use all the time.
The steel handles on the sides of the pan are characteristic of the older style Le Creuset roasting pan. The generation after this one ditched the handles, and rightfully so, I think! The steel handles seem easy to rust and hard to clean. I would also have a tough time finding them very useful with oven mitts on.
I walked up to the seller, acting very casual, and not even bringing the pan up with me. I asked him how much he wanted for the pan, and said, "Well, that one's made in France. It's a Le Creuset. My wife is French." I was expecting him to want a price higher than what I was willing to pay, when he closed with "I'd like five bucks for it." Music to my ears! Sometimes it pays to just act casual and not say a word. =)
I hastily handed over my five bucks and collected my bounty. I ended up scrubbing this piece for a good twenty minutes with my trusty tools - lots of dish soap, a scrubber, and a wooden toothpick for the nooks and crannies.
The first thing I made in my pan was a nice, satisfying banana bread!
6 hours ago