Sunday, September 03, 2006

I love my Dutch oven

Being the culinary guru that I am, I have certain items in my kitchen that I absolutely can NOT live without. They are as follows in order of must-have:

1) my Kitchen Aid stand mixer (if you don't have one, go directly to Bed Bath and Beyond with a 20% off coupon and get one)
2) my garlic press (I went through about five before I settled on one that I love)
3) my microplaner (awesome for zesting citrus and grating ginger)
4) my food processor
5) my Crock Pot
6) my terracotta garlic keeper
7) my herb keeper for the fridge (keeps herbs fresh for weeks!)

And Dutch oven joins the list. That thing is freaking AWESOME. I bought it about two months ago for making casseroles, but hadn't had a chance to try it out yet. Today I made a braised beef dish with carrots and sweet potatoes for McKenna...and it called for a "heavy-bottomed saucepan". Perfect opportunity.

Not only did that thing conduct heat like the dickens and saute my onions and garlic just perfectly, it also shaved forty-five minutes off the total cooking time at the end. "Simmer" to me is usually a very low boil...apparently to the Dutch oven, "simmer" is a HIGH boil!

Awesome...just awesome. And considering it was heavy cast iron, it cleaned up like a DREAM!

In case you aren't aware of what a Dutch oven is (I had to look it up), it is a very heavy cast-iron or enameled saucepan with a lid (usually 5 or 6 quart) that can be used on top of the range and also moved directly to the oven. I had to get cast-iron because I have a glasstop range and if you aren't aware, apparently enameled cookware can ruin glasstop ranges. (No, thankfully I didn't learn that the hard way...I read the instruction manual on an enameled skillet before I used it!)

Anyway, I love it. LOVE IT!


Blogger Kelley said...

Those big saucepans are great! We refer to ours as the curry pan. I also can't live without my crock pot, especially on Thursday nights when the kids have skating lessons from 5:30 until 7:00. ( Starts on the 14th, oh joy! )

3:33 PM  

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