Welcome to Camp Cooking Week! We’ll be cooking outdoors all week long so come back tomorrow for more outdoor cooking tips and tricks.
Day 1 – Dutch Oven Cooking for Beginners
Dutch Oven Cooking makes some tasty outdoor food. I mean real good. Setting a cast iron pot directly in the coals is a great way to get some delicious dinner (or breakfast or lunch) and once you know the basics it’s a fairly straightforward process.
But before we get to the food, we’ve got to talk heat. Dutch ovens are great at staying warm for a long time, but getting them warm takes a while. We start our charcoal briquettes in a chimney, a nifty metal tube with space at the bottom for a small fire. This heats the coals quicker – in 15 to 20 minutes – just enough time to get your ingredients together.
|Photo from www.dutchovenmania.com|
You put down some hot coals, put your dutch oven on then add more coals to the top. How long until you can eat that mouthwatering meal? Dutch oven cooking is for the patient. Most recipes require at least 45 minutes of cooking time, rotating the oven and lid every 10-15 minutes for even heating. You may not want to wait so long for dinner, but there’s a benefit for having your food cooked this way – it stays warm for hours. The cast iron in a Dutch Oven holds its heat well so going back for seconds is never a problem.
- Baking – not many outdoor cooking options can do this easily.
- Food stays warm a long time.
- Delicious food. Really, really good.
- Heavy – you’ll be getting a work out.
- Clean up can be messy, a food scraper helps.
- Time. Dutch ovens are the original slow cookers.
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