Good Sam Club Open Roads Forum: Questions on using a Dutch Oven
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 > Questions on using a Dutch Oven

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opnspaces

San Diego Ca

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Posted: 03/28/20 09:53am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

^ To add to the above. Try to avoid putting a bottom coal in the center of the oven. Instead make a small ring of coals with the center open. The center coal seems to cause a hot spot which leads to a burnt spot on the bottom of the food.


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ppine

Northern Nevada

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Posted: 03/28/20 10:00am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Many people seem to collect Dutch Ovens and their accessories, but have some fear about using them. This is common.

They are actually forgiving because of the mass of the cast iron. I always cook with wood. The main beginner problem is too much heat. Trust your DO.

Start with easy recipes like a stew. Find someone to help you with your first time or 2. Ready, set, go.

rexlion

Broken Arrow OK

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Posted: 03/28/20 02:32pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I wonder, instead of a parchment paper or foil liner, could the Reynolds cooking bags (like for turkeys) be used as a liner? A meal in a bag...


Mike G.
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ppine

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Posted: 03/28/20 04:34pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

No need for charcoal chimneys, charcoal, tables or gloves. Too much stuff.

A shovel and lid is all you need. A pair of pliers or vice grips works fine if you do not have a lid lifter.

cougar28

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Posted: 03/28/20 06:28pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

rexlion wrote:

I wonder, instead of a parchment paper or foil liner, could the Reynolds cooking bags (like for turkeys) be used as a liner? A meal in a bag...


Don't see why not.


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magnusfide

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Posted: 03/28/20 09:01pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Yep. Everyone's covered it. Welcome to the Cast Iron Chef club.


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OleManOleCan

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Posted: 03/28/20 10:29pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

dpgllg wrote:

I purchased a Lodge Dutch Oven with short stubby legs a while back and never got to use it. I don't even remember how big it is and will have to go to the RV to get it out. I bought this knowing absolutely nothing on how to use it.

Last year we started traveling with my brother and another couple (6 of us). We take turns preparing the meals and I thought using the Dutch oven would make for some good meals as well as some entertainment while preparing a meal.

My problem is I have been spending this time at home to look up all kinds of stuff and have been overwhelmed trying to learn how to properly use this oven.

Can you recommend a website that would start me out slow and allow me to get comfortable cooking this way? I can safely get the oven from the RV and start using it in my backyard. That way once we are able to return to camping I could be a little proficient at using it.

I'm open to all types of cooking as we rotate main course, sides and desserts as well as breakfasts.

Thanks!

Dave


Lots of good info available on D.O. Cooking.
Another source to consider is watching the Kent Rollins videos on Cowboy Cooking. Kent has lots of videos on Cowboy cooking with a D.O. Lots of easy recipes.

Before you make a lot of burnt crop circles in your yard, go to Lowes or Home Depot and buy a large patio stone to cook on...

ppine

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Posted: 03/29/20 08:12am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I ran into Kent and Shannon Rollins on a tour boat on Lake Tahoe last year. Great people. Kent is a good DO cook. I like CDub Butch Welch and his series a lot also which has been on public television WA ST Univ. Grady Spears is on The Cowboy Kitchen.

There are some DO cooking classes around if you know where to look. I have taken classes in Elko at the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering. Usually they are taught by ranch cooks. We had a guy from the famous Bell Ranch in NM that was very talented.

Vintage465

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Posted: 03/29/20 08:15pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

So my cousin is quite the accomplished Dutch Oven cook. When I was first starting he told me the rule to start with is consider each briquette for 20-25 degrees each. Which always seemed to me to run a little hot. Then I read the thing below that I copied and pasted and if I did that plan below, then the math above, it would be about 500 degrees in my oven figuring 25 degrees per briquette.

The normal formula for Baking is to use twice the number of briquettes as the diameter of the oven with 3/4 of them on the lid. For a 12 inch oven, you would use 24 briquettes with 18 on top and 6 underneath.


V-465
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magnusfide

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Posted: 03/30/20 12:08pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Vintage, like regular ovens cast iron DOs vary between manufacturers. Everything from thickness of the iron to the type of iron formula and casting will factor into it.

Types of briquettes vary in temp output too. Most DO chefs find a charcoal they like and stick with that brand so they know what to expect. Like a large number of DO chefs I use the basic Kingsford.

If you have Lodge, start with the basic Lodge chart and just start cooking. There’s no teacher like experience. Remember that cooler weather and windy weather will affect the times and temps because you are outdoors instead of indoors. Humidity can als affect it. These aren’t like “set it and forget it” slow cookers. They need to be watched and smelled. That means staying close by to detect burning. If you think it’s burning remove coals and let the temp drop some. If it’s not cooking fast enough add coals.

It’s more an art form than an absolute science but I’m pretty sure most people can master if they’re willing to put their mind to it. It just takes practice. Here’s a copy of the Lodge chart to get you on your way. It gives approximates for the different size ovens.
Lodge Baking Temperature Chart.

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