Troop 48 Dutch Oven 101 Origins oUse of Dutch ovens goes back hundreds of years in various forms. In 1704, an Englishman named Andrew Darby, taking what he learned by observing the Dutch system of making these cooking vessels by using dry sand to mold the vessels for a smoother finish, patented a process similar to them, and produced cast-metal cooking vessels for Britain and the new American colonies. The term "Dutch Oven" has been used since about 1710. oAmericans changed the design over time, including making a shallower pot, putting legs on it, and flanging the lid, which has been credited to the famous colonist, Paul Revere. A Dutch oven was among the gear Lewis and Clark used on their journeys. oIt is the official State Cooking pot for the states of Arkansas, Utah, and Texas Design features oHeat retention over time oHeat regulation to minimize burn spots oTight fitting lid with lip to hold coals oHeavy cast iron is durable and easy to clean oSizes range from 5” to 16”. Most sizes allow easily cooking for a few or a lot of people oHandles allow cooking over open fires o3 legs provide stable support over bed of coals
International Dutch Oven Society http://idos.org/EducationAll.php Recipes oPlan meals to feed the number of people in your patrol (e.g. pizza in a 12” Dutch oven for 10 guys means everyone gets a really small slice vs. a chili/ soup/ casserole which can feed a lot more people) oUseful website for recipes. Some have pictures so make it easy to find something that looks tasty http://www.dutchovendude.com/dutch-oven-recipes.asp http://www.everydaydutchoven.com/ http://50campfires.com/35-incredibly-easy-dutch-oven-recipes-camping/ http://www.scoutorama.com/recipe/ oHow do you cook both dinner and dessert in one Dutch oven? Of course you cannot cook them at the same time! Plan a one pot dessert recipe, also known as dump recipes such as a cobbler No need for aluminum foil Premix your dessert and cover in a bowl and set aside till dinner is cooked and cleaned Cook your dinner and serve your patrol directly out of the Dutch oven Start additional coals about 45 minutes before you plan to cook dessert Clean dinner from your Dutch oven while it is still warm. Remove any ‘left overs’ at this time. Apply a small amount of canola oil to insides of the Dutch oven and lid Pour in your dump recipe which usually takes 30-45 minutes to cook, giving you plenty of time to digest dinner oTiming is everything Most recipes require 2 hours start to finish, but can be as little as 1 hour to 4+ hours Remember that coal preparation requires 30-45 minutes Food Safety:
Cooking – Frying oUse this method to brown meat, sauté vegetables, simmer, boil or fry food oApply thin layer of oil to Dutch oven before heating oPre-heat the Dutch oven before putting food in oUse as many coals on the bottom as the diameter of your Dutch oven (e.g. 12” oven needs 12 coals to fry) oLid can be either on or off Cooking – Use bottom of lid as skillet oUse this method to toast bread oShape of bottom of lid is perfect to trap butter or oil oTurn lid upside down directly over 6-12 coals depending how hot you need your skillet oUse 2 lids for a Panini press Cooking – Baking, broiling, roasting oApply thin layer of oil to Dutch oven before each use oAlways place coals on appropriate surface to avoid charring the ground (Metal tray, Fire pit, or Raised surface) oNot necessary to preheat Dutch oven usually for baking oNever set a lid directly on the ground unless you want dirt to get in your meal Set lid on a lid holder, or Set lid on corner of cooking tray, or Turn lid upside down before setting on ground (careful handling the hot lid) oCounting Coals for Baking Rule of thumb - 2/3 coals on top when baking! Use the Rule of Three for 325 degrees to get started. Adjust as needed. Take the diameter of the oven (12 inches, for example) and subtract three (12 – 3 = 9) for the number of coals to place below the oven and add three (12 + 3 = 15) for the number of coals to place on the lid. To increase the temperature by 25 degrees, add 2 more coals - one coal on top of the oven and one below it The bigger the Dutch oven or the higher temperature you need, the more you have to think about heat and move more coals to the top Use this chart as a starting point. It is a modified version of Lodge’s recommendations and the Rule of Three. Temperature 12" Oven 14" Oven Degrees F 300 325 350 375 400 425 450 Total 22 24 26 28 29 31 33 Top 14 15 16 17 19 21 22 Bottom 8 9 10 11 10 10 11 Total 26 28 30 32 36 38 40 Top 16 17 18 19 24 25 26 Bottom 10 11 12 13 12 13 14
oCoal Placement– Ring Method (vs. Checkerboard pattern) Bottom – ring around outside, one coal in center Top – ring around edge, two coals in center oDutch Oven Heat Management Rotate lid and bottom 90 degrees in opposite directions every 15 minutes to avoid hot or cold spots Elevate your Dutch oven by placing on lid holder to promote more air circulation. Use rocks, wood, or even your lid holder to prop up the Dutch oven so coals don’t get smooshed or choke off the air Your first batch of coals will maintain heat for about 45 minutes To replenish heat during longer cook times, set new coals next to burning coals and wait about 20 minutes for the new coals to get up to temperature Less coals are required on hot days, more coals on cold days Block wind or rain which can use up coals faster or put them out Don’t open the lid till it’s ready to serve. Letting heat escape requires additional time to cook
oDutch Oven Stacking allows you to use fewer coals, but you have to think about what goes on top versus on bottom (size and contents) and the challenge of rotating your Dutch ovens Top – stews, soups, chilis, more heat required or more heat can be used on the bottom of the Dutch oven Middle – meats Bottom – desserts, or items that require less heat oIf steam is coming out from the lid or you can smell what’s cooking, you probably have too much heat or are overcooking your meal oCareful with ashes while removing lid unless you want camp pepper flavor oUse an aluminum pie tin set on a small # of pebbles or nuts/ bolts to make rolls, biscuits, or pies. This allows air to circulate under the dough without burning it. Plus this makes cleanup super easy. oCooking in the rain Use tray/ pan to avoid coals being on the wet ground Set up special fly off regular patrol site but safe distance away from foot traffic and things like propane tanks Form an aluminum foil tee pee and secure over the raised Dutch oven handle Umbrellas work in a pinch to keep raindrops off your Dutch oven meal
Dutch Oven Cleaning Never use soap! (unless you are reconditioning from scratch which is a Dutch Oven 201 level activity ) Never leave your Dutch oven wet! Never leave food residue in your Dutch oven! … or it will look like this: Clean your Dutch oven immediately after using, preferably while still slightly warm (but not too hot)! Carefully scrape out the excess food using any of the tools recommended below Soak inside with warm water approximately 20 minutes For tough cleaning, boil water with lid on for 20-30 minutes then repeat scraping Other cleaning tools: Plastic scraper Chain mail Nylon brush Potato with lots of salt Dirt & rocks Do NOT scrape with metal like spoons or knives With a little warm water wipe out the inside of oven. Drain wash water and rinse with fresh water. Never pour cold water into a hot Dutch oven!
Thoroughly dry the Dutch oven with paper towel or warm it on the gas stove or over a fire just enough to completely dry the oven Optional: Apply 1:4 mixture of apple cider vinegar and water to disinfect the Dutch oven Using a paper towel or soft cloth, wipe a "thin" coating of oil over the entire oven. I prefer canola oil because it doesn’t go as rancid as Pam spray, vegetable oil, olive oil or lard, but people have varying opinions on what works best. Any oil is better than no oil. Make sure to wipe out excess oil so that it doesn't turn rancid when not in use. To store, place a clean paper towel inside the Dutch oven and another clean, folded up paper towel under the lid and hanging slightly out the side to absorb any excess oil and moisture and to allow some air into the oven. This is what will minimize a stinky Dutch oven next time you use it.
Dutch Oven Storage oCampsite storage Leave in trailer overnight preferred Set cool Dutch oven under patrol fly to minimize chance of getting rained on oStorage Clean and dry (see Cleaning section) Dutch ovens Wipe with canola oil and remove excess Store Dutch ovens with clean paper towel(s) inside the Dutch oven and folded up half in/ half out of the oven with the lid on to allow air and smells to circulate Dutch Oven Tools oCharcoal chimney oCharcoal oLid lifter oWooden spoon oTongs for coals oTongs for cooking oGloves oScraper oSoft brush oLid stand oNuts & bolts oTrivet oPliers oFood thermometer