In "Behold the Egg" (December 2006, page 150), we recommend using a traditional 24-centimeter (9 1/2-inch) carbon-steel French omelet pan. Seasoning instructions from manufacturers can be sketchy, but food editor and stylist Paul Grimes, who brought an entire collection of omelet pans back from France, swears by this method.
1. Wash the pan well (do not use abrasives) and dry it.
2. Generously sprinkle the bottom of the pan with coarse salt, then cover it with a half-inch layer of vegetable oil.
3. Let the pan sit at room temperature for 12 hours, then heat it over moderately low heat until the oil is very hot and just beginning to smoke.
4. Discard the oil and wipe the pan dry.
5. Only use the pan for omelets. Never wash it after using; simply wipe it out with salt and a paper towel.