Everything You Need to Know About Dutch Ovens
Do you want to learn how to make delicious food in a Dutch oven? You have found the right page. This article will tell you everything you need to know about Dutch ovens.
A Dutch oven is a large cooking pot that is usually made of cast iron. It is used all over the world for cooking different types of dishes—roasted, braised or baked. They are good at withstanding heat and has the capabilities to intensify the flavor of almost any food such as meat, chicken, and vegetables.
Aside from this, they can also be used either indoors or outdoors, on top of the stove or in the oven. Because it serves a variety of purposes, this type of cookware is essential in every kitchen.
Dutch ovens have been used for hundreds of years. First, they were made of clay pots with lids that sit on top of burning coals. The lids had a concave shape for the coals so that the food will be surrounded by heat. During colonial times, this cookware was considered as a family heirloom because producing iron was against the law.
Dutch ovens made of cast iron were imported from another country, which was why they were really expensive. As time passed, Dutch ovens developed into different styles to fit the different cooking needs. Today, you will find Dutch ovens made of various materials using the newest technology, making them lighter and non-stick.
Sizes and styles of Dutch ovens
The sizes of Dutch ovens range from 6.625″ X 3″ to 16″ X 4.25″. You can buy small Dutch ovens that serve one person to a family of four. Meanwhile, a 10″ X 3.5″ Dutch oven with a capacity of 4 quarts can cook food for up to 7 persons. If you have to cook for a party of 20 people, you can either choose a 12″ deep X 5″ or a 14″ X 3.75″ Dutch oven because both these sizes have an 8-quart capacity.
The difference between the two is their height. The “deep” refers to the depth of the Dutch oven which holds up to 2 quarts more than the standard size. In other words, a standard 10” and a deep 10” Dutch may have the same diameter but have different capacity.
3 types of Dutch ovens
Kitchen Dutch oven
This is the most common type of Dutch oven as it is frequently found in the kitchen of any home. They are made of cast iron and sometimes ceramic. Most of them are round in shape while others are oval. While they are designed for indoor use, they can also be placed over a grill. Most Dutch oven recipes are created using this type.
Camp Dutch oven
As the name suggests, the camp Dutch oven is made for outdoor cooking. Campers bring this cookware because it is easy to use and can stand on its own. Furthermore, the cast iron construction makes it possible to easily cook delicious camping meals. This type has three legs and a rim around the lid. When you use this outdoors, do not forget to bring wood or charcoal, tongs, heat-resistant gloves and a small brush.
Pack Dutch oven
Some campers or travelers prefer this type of Dutch oven because it is made of aluminum, which is 35% lighter than cast iron; thus, they are lightweight and easier to pack or transport from place to place. Aside from this, aluminum is also a good conductor of heat that can quickly cook dishes. However, unlike cast iron, aluminum cannot hold or retain the heat for too long.
Dutch oven cooking
Knowing what a Dutch oven is will usually be followed by the question “What food can you cook in a Dutch oven?” Below are some of the cooking methods you can do.
Roasting is made easier with a Dutch oven as it evenly heats the chicken inside it when placed in an oven. Some people even do it on top of the stove. Just add the chicken and all the accompanying ingredients for the flavor and wait for it to cook.
For beginners who are afraid oil splatter, a Dutch oven is a life saver. Since it has higher walls than a frying pan, there is less chance of oil splatter. It is ideal for deep frying, too.
There is no need to knead the dough when you bake bread in a Dutch oven. Simply mix all the necessary ingredients until they turn into a wet and sticky dough. Put it in the oven to cook and wait until you have a perfect, round bread with a golden, crispy crust.