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moosetracker

Tips & Tricks of the Dutch Oven

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That is going to be my header topic for my EDGE Presentation..

I've got ideas that will fill 10 minutes (or more & need to cut down). But, I keep looking for things that our more unusual and different, that I might enlighten a seasoned scouter with.

 

1) Seasoning & washing - typical

2) Temperture not by chart, but by equal coals top bottom then move 3 from bottom to top for 325 and 1 on bottom & top for 25 degrees more there after..

3) using pie pans one upside down, then the food in the pie pan right side up.. to raise food off bottom..

4) using DO upside down, as an oven for a wider base, or just cooking on the lid like a skillet. (and I have a nice triangle metal trivit with short legs that can be used for the legs under the lid)

 

Any ideas? Wouldn't mind skipping the Seasoning & washing (as that is really basic) to add something more unique & interesting. We will be inside, and only 10 minutes (which I think gets rehashed over & over) so no real cooking will be done.

 

 

Does anyone have

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How about a slide that shows how many different things a dutch oven can be used for? For example, I know some troops that never go beyond the basics of a dump cake, or a cobbler made with canned pie filling.

 

Guy

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Similar to the pie pans. I use a round wire cooling rack to lift items off the bottom.

 

I personally rather use actual coals from the fire when I can especially for meals that take a long time to cook. Easier to get fresh coals than with charcoal. I personally don't like charcoal and do most my cooking by the fire. Hard wood make better coals than pine.

 

I hadn't heard of using the DO upside down. Trying to think of potential uses for that.

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Thanks,

I might lo-tech it and do pictures, (maybe a few recipes handouts).. that is an idea. (The dutch ovens and it's parafanalia will be enough to lugg into the class Plus I will have a fliptop binder for some power point like information... So I don't want to add to that with a laptop.

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Sometimes I will for the pie in a pie pan (I don't have to worry about my fingers getting too close to the sides trying to get the pie pan out, just lift the pot and the pie is there with no sides to worry about., or for a pizza, to have a bigger surface.

 

I've never done it, but others will just use the lid flipped upside down without the rest of the pot over, and the heat only below and use it like a skillet to cook up eggs or something.

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Dump the powerpoint!!! This is not the time to be a "Powerpoint Ranger."

 

Dump the paper copies, except for some recipes.

 

Use real Dutch ovens, real pie tins, real oil, and real (although unlit) charcoal briquettes.

 

You'll need at least two and maybe 3 ovens. You want one of them to be an unseasoned rustbucket. You want a second one of them to be a great D.O ... that you seasoned yourself.

 

One of the tough things about training aids is deciding what is appropriate and when. My experience is the best training aid is hands on with the real thing, or hands on with a simulator that removes certain safety issues from the real thing.

 

Have fun with this!!! :)

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John,

Cool! I was thinking the same thing, but since nobody else said it, I thought maybe I was wrong.

 

I'd dump the power point, any videos,and paperwork too unless as said, recipes, or charts that show "X" many coals = "X" temperature for "X" size DO

 

 

Something else you could do its show a DO table. Practice DO while being TNT. You won't have a fire pit or burnt area when you break camp.

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Oh it is not REAL powerpoint, as I said I don't want to add computer stuff. It is just a notebook like binder you can open up & have a tabletop flip chart.

 

So I can show the complexity of the DO tempeture chart on a paper flip chart then show how much easier it is to take say a 10" oven & put 10 coals on top & 10 on bottom (same as size of DO).. Then move 3 from bottom to top, and say this is 325 degrees. Then add 1 more top & bottom & say now 350, add 1 more top/bottom 375.. etc.. maybe then flip to a simple summary of the way, and point out how much easier one style is to remember then the chart.

 

Or the flip chart will have the points on seasoning, while I truely demonstrate it.. It is just because things stick differently with different people, you want to have two or three types of things for aids..

 

I do plan on bringing as much of the stuff as I can haul with the help of my husband.. (he's doing orienteering so he will have maps & compasses but not all I will have).. Although I am wondering about the water & oil & stuff and worring about mess.. (One reason I would prefer to take the washing & seasoning out and maybe get some other type of (less messy) filler.. You know some other ways to show to use the DO, or different gadgets to use with the DO..

 

Does anyone use the DO to Boil or fry? I just heap coals under.. Is there really a specific way to gage tempeture on something like that?

 

Sorry, no rusty DO.. I don't let mine get bad like that.. The troop once had one that no one washed, but it wasn't rusty.. Just the lid was stuck on where to pry it off you feared breaking the DO.. Then there was mold! But for rust I was thinking of at least going through the equal amounts of salt to water and applying this to a rusty DO to pull the rust off before re-seasoning.

 

For the audience practacing.. I was thinking of at least giving them a DO and asking them to place the coals for certain tempetures. And play with some of the gadgets.. I don't know if letting them rub oil on a pot or wash a pot is all that enlightening..

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How about if I brought in a few DO cookbooks & some normal (or casserole) cookbooks and had people look at it to see how you can take practically any recipe and convert it to a DO? This could lead into a demo on how you can make recipes with lots of ingredients more portable for taking to camp by prepping some at home.

 

I could even have the group work together to take one recipe and see what could be prepped at home, and what can be pre-bagged together with seasoning included, and what you would bag seprately due to it being added to the pot at different intervals.

 

This should be big enough to knock the messy seasoning/washing out of being "demo" and maybe into a brief note. Or paper handout.

 

 

 

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If you can debunk the myth that dutch ovens and other cast iron cookware can't be washed with soapy water, I think you would be doing everyone a favor. I've cleaned out too many rancid, gross DOs and skillets that were cared for under the 'NO SOAP, EVER!' rule.

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I use a tuna fish can with both the top and bottom cut out. It makes a great ring to place a pie tin or cake tin on.

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Just in the recent past, we've done a pork roast and vegetables, a ground beef and macaroni variation (what around here is called "American chop suey"), french fried potatoes (deep fried) and a fresh apple crisp.

 

The apple crisp is something I've done twice now, because I'm not all that fond of the cake mix and canned pie filling recipes (they're too sweet for me!). I adapted it from an America's Test Kitchen master recipe (master in the sense of it was written for any fruit you choose, with variations on toppings). I pre-prepped ingredients and put them in two ziplocks, and then brought about 6lbs of apples and two lemons.

 

Prepped apples by peeling and slicing, and then adding them to the dutch oven, squirting with lemon juice as I went (so they didn't turn too brown). When the apples were done, I tossed them with the contents of the first ziplock, which was basically some sugar and a little bit of cornstarch. I may have added a little bit of cinnamon and allspice to that too. When that was mixed, I topped it with the contents of the second ziplock, which was a mixture of brown sugar, oatmeal (processed in a food processor), some almonds (also processed in a food processor), and more cinnamon.

 

I completely forgot about the original recipe adding some cut-up butter to the topping mix! But it turns out that the crisp turned out pretty good without it.

 

I baked it for about a half hour, checking once after about 25 minutes (a paring knife, used to test the firmness of the baked apple).

 

One trick that I picked up from watching CeeDub on TV -- he says that more often than not, when you can smell what you're baking it is done. Sure enough, that worked for me. When I first smelled it, I tested it and found the apple just a little too firm, so I gave it another 5 minutes, and it was fine.

 

Guy

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There are still 2 camps out on the soap. I know some people do say MILD soap is fine. But, I grew up on the no soap, and never had a rancid pot. Also what is considered Mild?? The only one I saw was the one where some scout got charged with taking a DO home to clean, took it home.. brought it back (without touching the pot), and the pot was obviously not checked by the QM before he accepted the return. The "no washing" method does give you a rancid pot.

 

Great idea on the tuna can.. maybe I can show a few variations, the pie tin, the tuna can, I'll see if I can buy a cheap round wire cooling rack (mine are rectangular)..

 

GKlose - exactly what I am thinking of with pre-prepping.. Pre-bagging items that get mixed & put in at the same time (so you aren't bringing 50 spices along, and more sugar, flour etc then what's called for) and knowing you can slice carrots and beans or pre-dice chicken or beef & what not at home, but things like the apples & potatoes still need to wait. Almost making yourself a home-made complete dinner (or desert) kit and taking that to camp. Looking at a normal recipe and knowing how to reorg it..

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