How to season unglazed clay pot?

I am a big fan of clay pot. I really enjoy cooking in it. The aroma of food cooked in clay pot is amazing. Food doesn’t stick to the bottom if cooked properly. The important thing is to remember that never put empty pot on stove/gas directly, always add something like oil, veggies, rice etc and turn on the gas. Always cook on low to medium heat when using clay pot. It is also very important to season pot before using 1st time or it will crack. Never use soap to clean the pot. Just use the gentle non-abrasive cleaning pad to scrub and use hot water to clean it. If something stuck to the bottom, I add little salt and scrub with sponge, then clean with water.

I recently bought my second clay pot from local vendor. The 1st pot I bought I use it so frequently so decided to invest in 2nd pot. I make stuffed eggplant, biryani, etc. in it. It is so easy that you put everything in pot, turn on the gas and let it cook on medium to low heat. Stir occasionally and it gets done without much effort.
Brand new clay pot

1. 1st step most important. Fill up a big vessel/bucket or sink with water (no hot water). Completely submerge pot in it. Keep it in this water for at least 18-20 hours or until it stops soaking any more water. Clean properly with water.

2. Let it dry completely. Then rub oil all over both sides.

3. There are different ways you can then season the pot.

  • Put pot in the oven first. Then turn on the heat to 400F. Bake for around 15 mins. Turn off heat. Let it cool down completely.

  • Add fresh desiccated coconut in the pot. Turn on heat low to medium. Roast coconut stirring continuous. Cook it until coconut turns brown and dried. Turn off heat. You will notice inside of the pot is slightly oily and shiny with natural oil from coconut. You can discard coconut. Pot is ready to use. (I used both these method to season my clay pot)

  • You can also season with rice water. Add hot rice water in the pot and leave it on side for 1 hour. Do not discard water yet. Put this pot on stove and turn on stove on low heat. Bring it to boil. Turn off the heat. When it cools down, discard water and clean the pot with water. It is ready to use.

You will notice the colour of the pot turn dark after few use. Gradually it will turn black. It can last years if used with care.

Clay pot

Here is my Instagram reel on how I cook handi biryani without oil.

Hope you like the detail information.

Check other tips and tricks (how to) here.
How to get rid of sticky label from the bottle?
How to easily remove coconut from shell and make dried coconut

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Author: Bhavna's Food Journey

Welcome to Bhavna's food journey! Join me in cooking easy, simple, healthy and delicious food. I am a mother of two adult children and understand the fast life of today's adult. Hope you will enjoy and try my recipes. Looking forward to hearing from you!!

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