Everyone remembers their grandmother’s Dutch oven. It was a kitchen staple. Today’s cast iron can do so much more than what your granny ever showed you. Here are a few ideas to get you started.
There’s nothing like fresh-baked cornbread. Whip up your favorite recipe and pour it into the pot. Cover it and throw it directly on the coals for 20 to 30 minutes. You can also place 10-12 coals on the
lid to help with the cooking.
Deep-Fry Doughnuts and Fish
Deep-fried fish makes an amazing dinner, but deep-fried doughnuts are an even better dessert. But who has a commercial deep-fryer just hanging out in their kitchen? With cast-iron, you don’t need one. Pour vegetable oil or peanut oil into your pot, 2 inches deep.
Set it on the coals to heat up. Now, test the oil temperature by dropping a tiny piece of dough or fish into the oil.
Once you’ve managed to get the right temperature, which you’ll know by the fizzing and sputtering, drop your fish or doughnuts in (not both at the same time though), Cook until golden brown and
enjoy the awesomeness.
Cooking chicken in cast iron seems tricky at first, but this video shows you that it can be done. And, Dutch oven chicken tastes amazing.
Cover the bottom of the pot (oven) with a thin layer of oil and lay the chicken pieces down in there gently. Throw it on the coals and let it cook.
Flip the chicken every 10 minutes or so until it’s done.
Use It to Smoke Anything
Most people don’t know this, but cast iron can be used to smoke just about anything. Sure, it’s not a traditional use of the Dutch oven, but it does make pretty much anything taste amazing.
This time, instead of cooking directly in the oven, you’ll use the lid as the cooking vessel, while the Dutch oven itself will house 3-5 decently-sized smoking wood chunks.
Place the dry chunks of wood directly into the Dutch oven and set on hot coals.
You don’t need to soak the wood chunks as the Dutch oven protects the wood from catching fire. This works best when you are using a grill that can accommodate the size of the oven, like an Acorn or “Big Green Egg”-style grill.
Get the temperature inside the grill up to about 250 to 300 degrees and wait for blue smoke. When a thin stream of blue smoke is coming out the top of your grill, go ahead and throw the meat on the Dutch oven lid and place it on the grill grates. If you have center removable piece on your grill, remove it. You can also set the lid upside down on the Dutch oven, leaving room for smoke to filter out.
Close the grill lid and wait until your meat reaches the desired internal temperature.
Cook With the Lid
Since the lid is also made of cash iron, you can cook with it. It’s a sort of faux griddle. Flip it upside down and set it directly on top of the hot coals. Let it warm up, and you’ll be frying eggs, bacon, potatoes, pancakes, and sausage all day long.
About the author: Christine Allen works as a manager in a home improvement center. She loves sharing her insights online. Her articles can be found mainly on DIY and home improvement websites.