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Photo courtesy of Thermador
Griddles are a flat cooking surface typically made from steel or cast iron. Items like eggs, pancakes or sandwiches are placed directly on the griddle, as the flat surface allows them to be easily lifted with a spatula. Griddles look similar to French tops, but the main difference is that griddles provide a constant heat over the entire surface, while French tops are the hottest at the center and provide less heat on the sides.
Seasoning & cleaning: Much like a cast iron frying pan, griddles need to be seasoned with cooking oils before use. Seasoning your griddle keeps food from sticking on it, helps give food extra flavor, and most importantly, fights corrosion and rust. Your range manufacturer should have instructions for the best way to season the griddle.
Griddles can usually be cleaned with warm water after each use (you might want to add a little more cooking oil after each cleaning). When you do want to do a complete clean and remove old seasoning, use white vinegar or club soda. For best results, follow the instructions from your range manufacturer.