Sunday, November 8, 2009

New Dutch Oven

I decided I wanted needed a new piece of cookware to take when we live in the North Trail for four months. That's right. Four months in a very minimal living space (indoors). The cookware we have in the camper is not expensive.  It works, but it does not provide very even heat or allow for much temperature variation. During our summer camping, it is sufficient, as we grill almost all of our meals. But, for that extensive amount of time away from my home kitchen, I need more versatility.   A new addition to the camper needed to meet certain requirements.

  • The cookware needed to work for more than one cooking task.
  • It had to be cast iron, my cookware of choice.  
  • Handles were an issue.  Long handles make storage a problem in our minimal space. 
This 5 quart Lodge™ cast iron Double Dutch oven

has a cover that doubles as a skillet!  Two pans in one!!!  And loop handles. And I had a gift certificate that covered the entire cost of the pan!!! Perfect.

It is a one of our designated gluten free pans. We wanted to break the cookware in, so we christened it with this stew recipe, making a few changes. A gluten free flour mix took the place of the flour, which worked beautifully. I added turnips, because they were in the refrigerator.  And, instead of the tomato paste, I used some canned chipotle chili peppers in adobo sauce. Why? Because they were in my pantry and tomato paste wasn't. I also turned the oven temperature down to 300º and let it stew for four hours, adding the vegetables after the first two hours.  Mighty tasty, with a bit of a spicy surprise!  The pan worked fantastically. And, it was easy to clean, too.  It came preseasoned, which was a nice surprise. One should always avoid using soap in cast iron.

I am challenging myself to make apple butter this week.

Marlys and Paul brought me a huge box of these:

Haralson apples. They happen to be my favorite kind of apple in the whole world. Right from their yard.  Beautiful ones, too, I might add.  No blemishes and never been sprayed.

I will be trying two different recipes, one of my Mom's and one that Suzanne sent me.  I am posting this here to challenge myself to get this accomplished in the next few days.  Hopefully, I'll get some pictures of the process as well.

Now, I am going to enjoy this beautiful Indian summer.  Finally.  We deserved it after that entire month of October!


Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

That pan is so cool! So cool that the cover doubles as a skillet - genius!

Yum, that stew recipe looks delicious. I might have to try that next Sunday! I am actually using my Dutch Oven for the first time today, but am embarassed to admit that I got it for Christmas last year... Yikes. What is my deal. I am making a vegetable soup with some Round steak that I have in my freezer. My goal is to make something w/ red meat in it each week from now through Christmas because I am not getting much red meat, so am probably lacking in iron right now.

Can't wait to use my new Dutch Oven! :)

Marlys said...

I love those pots and pans! I know we gave one for a Christmas gift a fe years ago and I always give gifts I wish I had myself! Interesting, not?
Good luck with the apple butter. I made another batch of apple juice and plan to make one more batch before I pull the pin. The apples are so good this year! Enjoy!