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Is my pan ruined? I coated it evenly with vegetable oil, put it on low to medium heat, came back after about 20 and the centre where the now circle is was dry and the oil was around the dry circle. I cleaned it under hot water, gently scrubbed, the hard crumby circle away and it went down to what you see now. I reseasoned it and put it in the oven upside down but nothing changed. Help!

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    Possible duplicate of What's the best way to season a cast iron skillet? – Tetsujin Feb 3 at 11:59
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    Best guess is you just had far too much oil in there. You don't want anything that will pool, pour or run, you want a virtually invisible coating, then repeat 5 or 6 times. Trying to do it all in one go doesn't work. – Tetsujin Feb 3 at 12:01
  • You didn't ruin the pan. There's little that can ruin a cast iron pan short of an angle grinder. At worst, you need to scrub off the poorly seasoned oil and try again. – FuzzyChef Feb 4 at 4:56
  • Just repeat and/or keep cooking. Unless you hate having some figures depicted on your pan. It can be, actually most likely is, just some fine thickness variation of the wanted seasoning film. – Alchimista Feb 5 at 15:40
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From the look of that, I'd say there's two possibilities.

  1. your burner is too small, and is heating the pan in the middle only, producing the ring. The solution for this is to heat it in the oven as explained in this answer.
  2. as Tetsujin suggests, you may be using too much oil and it's pooling in the middle and burning.

In either case, your next step is to scrub the pan to get the burned and uneven oil off. I suggest using coarse salt with a little vegetable oil as a scrubbing mix; I get my pans smooth this way. Then restart your seasoning.

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