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Finished Dutch Oven Peach Cobbler

Dutch Ovens come in sizes 8‑14 inches in diameter (12" is good size). They can be made of Cast Iron or Aluminum. They come with a lid. The Dutch Oven is placed inside its heat source (house oven or coals) and it heats up and distributes that heat evenly to the food inside.

 

They can be placed directly in a fire or oven. The lid can be used inverted over a fire or a stove to cook on as a griddle.

 

You can purchase a case that makes it easier to carry and it also keeps the oven much cleaner while being stored. It also keeps your vehicle cleaner by not having the dirty sides and bottom of an outdoor Dutch Oven exposed.

 

The Indoor Dutch Oven is pretty simple. It is used in a regular oven or a solar oven. The lid is convex (curved upward). It is carried with pot holders or hot gloves. It may or may not have a wire handle. The lid will have a handle, but it may or may not have a loop for a hook.

 

For outdoor use, the Dutch Oven has 3 legs so it can stand down in the fire, straddling the coals. The lid is concave (curved downward) and it has a lip to hold the coals from falling off. The lid should have a loop for the hook. A wire handle is attached to the base.

 

Ready to Make Dutch Oven Cherry Cobbler  Finished Dutch Oven Cherry Cobbler

 

The table below compares both kinds of Dutch Ovens.

  

Oven Type

 Advantages

Disadvantages
Cast Iron Heats Evenly, 

Maintains Temperature

Heavy,

Can Rust

Aluminum

Lightweight,

Won't Rust

Reflects Heat,

More Coals

 

Consider the following concerning Dutch Ovens:

 

Cleaning - To clean a Dutch Oven, remove all food and then heat the oven. Put some vegetable oil in the bottom. Using folded paper towels and a putty knife, move the hot oil around the bottom and sides of the oven. Where needed, scrape the baked on food from the walls or bottom of the oven. Replace the paper towels as needed. Once all signs of food are gone, wipe it one last time with oil and allow it to cool with the lid off. Once it is cool, replace the lid. If you have a case, put it in the case. Store it, all ready for the next use.

 

Cooking - Follow these steps when cooking food in your Dutch Oven:

  • Before you heat the oven, shape some foil to fit inside it. Get large enough foil so the side walls are covered as much as possible all the way around. If you are going to make more than one batch, now is the time (with a cool oven) to form other foil liners for use later.

Dutch Oven with Foil

  • Build a fire, charcoal works well or any hardwood.
  • To handle the oven, use a hook or Hot Gloves.
  • To preheat the Dutch oven, place the covered oven directly in the coals. Cover the top of the oven with coals at a ratio of 2 coals on top for every coal on the bottom. Heat rises and half of the heat from the top coals will not help cook the food. Be sure that there is nothing inside the oven that should not be there when it is heated.

Coals on Dutch Oven

  • When it is ready, remove the oven and put your food in. Return the Dutch Oven to the fire.
  • If you need to set the lid down while you work with the food, use a clean piece of foil. It works best to keep a folded up piece of foil inside your oven when it is stored.

Foods - A Dutch Oven can be used to cook just about anything. Here are just a few options:

  • Bacon
  • Baked Potatoes
  • Biscuits
  • Boiled Eggs
  • Bread
  • Brownies
  • Burritos
  • Casserole
  • Cake
  • Cheese Crisp
  • Chicken
  • Chicken and Dumpling's
  • Cobbler
  • Eggs
  • Grilled Cheese Sandwich
  • Hamburger
  • Hash Browns
  • Hot Dogs
  • Lasagna
  • Muffins
  • Omelet
  • Pie
  • Potatoes
  • Rice
  • Roast
  • Soup
  • Steak
  • Stew
  • Turkey
  • Vegetables

Heat Source - For a fire pit, hardwood (e.g. oak or hickory) or charcoal work best for a heat source. For indoor, a regular natural gas or electric oven will work. Dutch Ovens can also be used in solar ovens, but the indoor type should be used so it will take up less room.

 

Interior Pans - Heavy‑duty aluminum foil is a must. Also, any cake or pie pans that fit. The goal is to keep the oven itself as free from contacting food as possible because it is not so easy to clean.

 

Preparation - A new Dutch Oven needs to be seasoned. Wash it once with warm sudsy water. Rinse it and allow it to dry. Never wash it with sudsy water again! Use paper towels & coat it with cooking oil. Put a small amount of oil in the bottom & heat for 1 hour. Then wipe the oil all around with a paper towel.

 

Storing - Don't store it with the lid on tight. If you do, you may get rust from the moisture that cannot escape. Keep it in a dry area.

 

Tools - Consider the following tools to use with your Dutch Oven:

  • Make a hook to lift the oven or the lid. A coat hanger or broom handle with metal hook works well. Claw hammer or channel locks will also work instead of a hook. You can also purchase a hook made just for this purpose.
  • A piece of aluminum foil makes a nice place to put the HOT lid when it must be removed. The inside of the lid must stay clean. Store this inside the oven when it is not in use.
  • A shovel & a fire always go together.
  • You will also need hot pads or hot gloves.
  • A putty knife or a special scrubber can be used to clean the oven. Store this inside the oven when it is not in use. Be sure to remove it before heating the oven.

To see some Dutch Oven Solutions, click the links below:

  

  

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