By the OU Kosher Halacha Yomit Team
I bought a brand-new pre-seasoned cast-iron skillet. I understand that it requires kashering. Should I kasher it first and then tovel the pan, or do I tovel it first and then kasher it afterwards?
Shulchan Aruch (YD 121:2) writes that if one buys a vessel that requires kashering, it should be kashered and then toveled.
What if one toveled before kashering? Shulchan Aruch writes that this is a matter of dispute. Some maintain that the tevilah is valid. Others rule that tevilah must be repeated after hagalah because tevilah before kashering is akin to immersing in a mikvah while still grasping a sheretz (the carcass of an unclean animal). Shach (121:5) rules that the vessel should be toveled again without a bracha.
It can be assumed that all agree that tevilah of a pre-seasoned cast iron skillet is invalid if it precedes the kashering. This is because the layer of fat applied for seasoning is a chatzitzah (barrier) that prevents the mikvah water from touching the pan. As such, the pan must be toveled again after kashering. In this instance, a bracha must be recited on the second tevilah since the previous tevilah was unquestionably invalid.