A Dutch oven is one of the best all-around tools in your kitchen and great for beginners. Dutch ovens are thick-walled large pots with a tight-fitting lid. Dutch ovens are normally made of cast iron but could also be cast aluminum or ceramic with an enamel interior, depending on the construction. A Dutch oven is the go-to pan you need to bring your gourmet cooking game to the next level whether you are cooking indoors at your home or camping. Knowing how to use a Dutch oven and all of the ways to use it is half the battle.
How to Use a Dutch Oven: Things You Need to Know
Not all Dutch ovens are constructed the same way and it is important to know how to use a Dutch oven, depending on how it’s made. When you’re looking for a Dutch oven, make sure that it is heavy-duty, cast iron or aluminum. There are also ceramic Dutch ovens but we recommend porcelain enameled ceramic for a lasting Dutch oven.
Another thing to consider for beginners is the handles. It’s important to make sure that they are oven safe if you’re cooking at home. Depending on what you’re cooking, you may want to put the whole Dutch oven into your oven. You need to make sure that the handles are oven safe to make sure that your new pan will last.
Baking in Your Dutch Oven
Dutch ovens are the utilitarian pot that you’ve been looking for whether you are cooking at your home or during your camping trip. Whether you’re interested in layered desserts, cakes or cobblers, there are a ton of recipes that you can make in a Dutch oven. There are a thousand and one uses for baking with a Dutch oven. We recommend greasing the inside before baking to ensure that it doesn’t stick. Besides that, the sky is the limit!
Soups are Easy to Make in a Dutch Oven
When you aren’t feeling well and need a good cup of soup, your Dutch oven is your secret weapon for cooking a home-cooked meal while staying indoors. Soups and other boiled recipes are easily made with your Dutch oven. The thick walls can stand up to hours of cooking to impart the flavor to bring your soup or other recipes to the next level.
Roasting chicken or potato is simple with your Dutch oven. The key to a flavorful roasted meal is all about the crispness of the skin and juicy insides. A Dutch oven takes all of the guesswork out of roasting to make you a gourmet chef. We recommend putting in your aromatics first and then place your meat on top. The natural juices will flavor the aromatics for the perfect roasted stew you’ve ever had!
Use the Lid Too!
The convenience of having a Dutch oven cannot be understated. Not only the pot, even the lid is useful as a skillet or griddle. Whether you’re camping or cooking a large family meal at home indoors, this user-friendly pot does double duty and a great choice for beginners. When you purchase your Dutch oven, make sure that you get the specifications for the lid to ensure that you can use it separately safely.
The Best Beans You’ve Ever Had
While the convenience of canned beans cannot be understated, there’s nothing like slow-cooked beans. By taking the time to sort the beans and boil them, you can impart the complex, earthy flavors to enjoy beans the way they’re meant to be eaten. Like the beans in your mother’s soups or grandma’s refried beans, fresh boiled beans are the best way to enjoy them and just one of the many uses for a cast iron or enameled ceramic Dutch oven!
Stacking Dutch Ovens
Depending on the size of your oven, or a campfire or other outdoor cooking source while camping, you can stack your Dutch ovens to make cooking large family dinners a breeze. If you have the clearance or different racks in your oven that will accommodate multiple Dutch ovens, you can make short work of dinner and dessert at the same time. This allows you to make gourmet dinners quickly with all of the fixings in a fraction of the time.
Dutch Ovens are Great for Simmering
When you are making sauces or stews, simmering can be the difference between a run-of-the-mill sauce and a gourmet experience. The thick walled construction and cool-touch handles make long simmering possible. This simmering intensifies flavor and can make anyone a chef! This is just one of the many uses for a Dutch oven!
Seasoning Your Dutch Oven
No matter what your Dutch oven is made of, it’s important to season your new tool While the process is slightly different depending on what your Dutch oven is made off, this is an integral part in both imparting flavor and making your Dutch oven last. We recommend seasoning your Dutch oven regularly and at least 3-4 times per year. Seasoning your pan also can create a non-stick surface to make cooking and cleaning your Dutch oven easier than ever!
Cleaning Your Dutch Oven
Like anything else in the kitchen, Dutch Ovens should be cleaned regularly. Each time you cook with and then clean your Dutch oven you are breaking down the seasoning process. Depending on the construction, soap may or may not be recommended.
Knowing how to use a cast iron Dutch oven is important. Most people recommend using coarse salt and a hard-bristled brush to clean it. You can rub the salt into the pan with the brush to clean it and then rinse out the salt. This maintains the seasoning of the pan longer.
For enameled ceramic Dutch ovens, cleaning is a bit more forgiving. You can easily use soap and water. We do recommend rubbing the inside of your enameled Dutch oven with oil before storage. This will help to create a non-stick surface over time.
A Dutch oven is the multi-purpose pan that you’ve been looking for. No matter what you’re trying to cook or bake, the Dutch oven can bring your cooking game to the next level. The sky is the limit when you know how to use a Dutch oven. If you’re interested in baking, simmering, boiling, roasting, basting, or frying, a Dutch oven is the best comprehensive and easy to clean tool for the job.
Whether you’re baking bread or roasting chicken, the Dutch Oven is the useful tool you’ve been missing! For chefs and beginners alike, a Dutch oven is a comprehensive tool you’ve been missing! Purchase one, or a few, and we know you won’t be disappointed!