Nothing says lovin’ like a Dutch oven. Designed to retain heat and maintain even cooking temperatures, this thick and sturdy accessory is your next kitchen must-have. Dutch ovens have been around for 100’s of years, originated in the Netherlands and traditionally designed to be used outside over hot coals. Today, Dutch ovens can be found in many household kitchens across the globe. This one-pot wonder has many versatile functions to fit most of your cooking and baking needs.
Use it for Soups and Stews
It’s a no brainer that this large majestic pot was meant for soups and stews. Its large build makes it the perfect vessel for holding a lot of soup. But I’m not talking about throwing a few cans of Campbell’s into your pot. Your Dutch oven was made to craft food with much more love and care.
The Dutch oven loves medium heat and slow cooking. To get the best use out of it, prep it early, toss the lid on and let your soup simmer. It’s great for softening those root vegetables like potatoes, carrots and parsnips without losing their integrity. The low and slow cooking method intensifies the flavors wonderfully and produces that nostalgic aroma we all crave when the colder weather comes rushing in.
Speaking of colder weather, who doesn’t love a good beef stew to warm up with on a winter day? Grab your Dutch oven, and trust me, it’s all you’ll need. Your Dutch oven will perfectly brown your meat, awarding your stew with that delicious buttery flavor. Additionally, the brown bits from your beef make a prime base of flavor.
Remember you Dutch oven guarantees even cooking temperatures. Plus, the lid was designed to let very little steam escape which is ideal to create the perfect gravy. Like soups, you can cook this slow and low once adding the rest of your ingredients. Your stew can be cooked stove top or in the oven. Either way, you can walk away, relax for 2 hours and this pot will do the work for you. You don’t want to go through this winter without one.
Use it to Roast
One pot meals should be every house-hold staple for gatherings. You can find an endless amount of one pot recipes on Pinterest of pasta and rice dishes, but get ready to blow your friends and family away with this beautiful Dutch oven classic. We’re talking full-on roast chicken.
One would think that roasting a chicken in a closed pot wouldn’t necessarily roast it. I was skeptical too. But the way that the Dutch oven is designed bakes the skin perfectly crisp. And the lid actually keeps the chicken super moist so that you’re not constantly basting it.
I know, I know. It seems impossible. But it’s not, and it’s such a simple elegant dinner. Trust the Dutch.
Toss in some chopped up veggies and a seasoned 5lb chicken and your Dutch oven will take it from there. Once in the oven and lid on, the heat will circulate and transfer to the food from every direction ensuring that your chicken will roast thoroughly. Imagine your guests walking into your home with the aroma of buttery roast chicken and thyme filling the air. Smells like love to me!
The Dutch oven is definitely a winner winner chicken dinner when it comes to roasting chicken in my book. Why waste time with your roasting rack and losing the oven heat each time you open it to baste the chicken when the Dutch oven does it all for you.
Use it to Fry
Once again, your Dutch oven steals the show for its abilities to conduct and maintain heat. Do away with the deep fryer, your Dutch oven has taken over and is here to stay.
To a lot of us, frying food can be an intimidating task. Because the Dutch oven maintains the temperature of the heated oil, it gives you the control as the cook. When cooking with oil, you should follow the slow and low method that you use for your soups and stews. This gives you control over a steady heat without scorching the enamel – and it’s safer for you. Remember, each stove produces heat differently. To ensure a safe and successful fry, start at a medium heat and raise it slightly if needed.
Frying can be messy as the oil tends to splatter the stove top or even your arms. But the tall walls of your Dutch oven keep the oil in check and act as a solid barrier to create a less mess situation. If you’re ever unsure of how much oil to use, the safe way to fry would be to only fill 1/3 of your pot with oil. Trust me, this will be plenty.
Use it to Bake