How to Season a New Mortar and Pestle

If you have cast-iron cookware, the term “season” is used to refer to the treatment/conditioning of the iron over time. In this case, “seasoning” a new mortar and pestle refers to the conditioning/prep you need to do before you start cooking with it. You might have also seen the term “cure” used to refer to this process of “breaking-in” or “prepping” your new mortar and pestle for use.


Why do I have to season my new mortar and pestle?

If you have an unseasoned mortar and pestle, or one made out of granite/stone, then you will need to season it before using. This is because the porous surface can release particles of stone and grit into your food upon first use. Seasoning preps the surface and removes any of these particles.

The Seasoning Process

  1. Wash with a scrubby brush and air dry. Do not use soap

  2. Season with rice into a powder

  3. Season with recommended spices to form a paste

  4. Wash again using a scrubby brush. Air dry

  5. Time to cook!

Best Technique While Seasoning Your New Mortar and Pestle

Your first instinct while trying to grind the rice might be to use your wrist and strength and pound the rice into a powder. This action takes a lot of effort and doesn’t really do anything to the rice.

However if you’re trying to crack nuts, you can pound them open using this motion. But if you’re trying to make a paste, the best technique is to use your wrist to maneuver the ingredients up and around the sides of the mortar. The stony texture of the mortar plus the pressure from the pestle is what’s going to do the work for you.

How Long it Takes to Complete

Grinding the rice into a powder can take more than 30-minutes. Some blogs suggest rice-seasoning three or more times! Depending on how much time and strength you have you might now be able to do this in one day let alone in a single sitting.

Seasoning the mortar and pestle with the other ingredients took less time, since it was garlic and spices.

Storage and Upkeep

One big question that people tend to ask is if you don’t use soap, then how do you ensure that those flavors don’t transfer when you use the mortar and pestle again?

Well, bring out the rice. If you find that after scrubbing and drying your mortar and pestle, you have unwanted flavors, grind the rice into a powder to remove them.

You should store your mortar and pestle where it won’t be hit. You don’t want to crack or chip the bowl. Storing on a lower cabinet is best, considering how heavy they can be.

By |2021-08-30T22:16:42-04:00August 20th, 2021|Blog, Cookware, Grill, Spring, Summer|

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