Since soapy water can strip the seasoning off of cast-iron cookware, our standard cleaning method is to heat a little oil in the pan, add salt, and use this coarse paste to rub away cooked-on food. This chain-mail scrubber promises to make the scrubbing part easier while keeping your cast iron well-seasoned.
Gadget name: CM Scrubber
It looks like: A sheet of steel rings cut from a medieval knight’s jousting gear.
How we tested it: We passed this 4-inch square of stainless steel chain mail over a cast-iron pan encrusted with charred bits of sausage and another that we’d used for frying bacon.
How it actually works: The linked steel rings effortlessly lifted away any stuck-on bits without damaging the pan’s finish.
Good to know: The scrubber itself took some scrubbing to become completely grit- and oil-free for the next use, but it dried quickly and didn’t rust.
My favorite part: We’re not too keen on cluttering our kitchen with single-use gadgets, but this little tool works just as well on any other cookware surfaces (besides nonstick).
Overall: We’re even fonder of our cast-iron skillet now that we have a faster, tidier cleanup tool.