A Dutch oven, or a large covered pot of some heavy material like cast iron, is a versatile tool for cooking casseroles, stews, roasts, and other big meals. The thick-walled cooking vessel has been a time-tested tool for several centuries. While the old-fashioned kind used for hundreds of years featured thick, sturdy legs to hold the pot over the fire, today’s modern style usually has a flat, smooth base to fit in our modern kitchen appliances.
Dutch ovens are ideal for slowly cooking, boiling, or roasting foods. They can be used in the oven, on a stovetop, or even at campfires. Sitting over the hot coals, campfire Dutch ovens can bake bread, pizza, and biscuits.
Care and maintenance
pDutch ovens are typically heavy and sturdy, but they still require proper care to help them last a long time. The material it’s made of affects how you clean it.
- If it’s made of plain cast iron, then you should wash it with boiling water and a brush, using as little soap as possible. Treat it with cooking oil to prevent rusting, and let it dry thoroughly with the lid off. If keeping the lid off isn’t possible with your storage space, then place an absorbent cloth or paper inside to suck in the moisture.
- Cast-iron ovens gradually become black, smooth, and slick. Food is less likely to stick to their surfaces, making them easier to clean.
- Enamel-coated Dutch ovens are usually dishwasher friendly. They don’t have to be seasoned before each use, but they’re not able to withstand the extremely high heats that cast-iron pots can, making them ill-suited for frying foods.
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