Thursday, November 18, 2010

Treasure Chest Thursday...The Old Dutch Oven

We've all seem 'em. Most of us have even used 'em!

Most of us when we think about a Dutch oven think of something that looks like this
...this is a new Dutch oven.

Functional and versatile, this bad boy can go from stove top to oven in 0.01 seconds flat! Yep! Nothing to break, scratch, ding, or melt on this bad boy!

Cost today new?

About $60.

But what was our grandparents, or great-grandparents cookware like when it came to the old Dutch oven?

Most of us have seen this kind of Dutch oven...

...but what do we really know about it?

Well, when I think of my ancestors cooking, I think back even before there was a wood stoked kitchen stove. Back to when Great-Grandma learned to cook on at an open hearth.

Margaret Perkins Bean probably cooked something like this... a fireplace.

This kind of pot is called a "spider" Dutch oven. [See the long legs? Resembling a "spider".]

In very warm weather, she may have cooked like this...

...outside over an open fire. This would have prevented heating up the house on a hot summer's day.
There's even a method of burying the Dutch oven in a pit of hot coals, and then covering the top with more hot coals.

This makes a real oven effect. Great for roasting or baking!

And there's another method!
Those great little short legged Dutch ovens can be stacked!
Yep, hot coals placed on each lid, and then stacked.
In this manner, a person could cook an entire four course meal and time it just right so that everything would be done at the same time!
Meat, veggies, bread, and dessert!

If you're lucky enough to have one of your ancestors Dutch ovens, pans or pots, treasure it!

Cookware today simply is NOT made like it used to be!

And nothing tastes as good as good home cooking done in a well seasoned cast iron pot!

Dutch ovens just happen to be my favorite!


Claudia's Genealogy Blog said...

I do have a large roasting pan that was my grandmothers. I am thinking it is at least 70 years old, it will hold a 25 pound turkey. She got married in 1917.

I went to Macys one day looking for a large stockpot to take to the beach. One of the clerks said "This pot will last 100 years." And I laughed and said I had no need for a pot that would last longer than me."

Lori said...

I love it! Have you ever read the "Little House" series of books. They all contain recipes and some of the things they talk about I have never even heard of. It really makes you think about what it must have been like for our great great grandmothers. Thanks for sharing these photos!

Homestead Mommy said...

I love cast iron pots and pans. I've collected quite a few and use them daily. They cook the best and are just about indestructible!
Some of mine are newer but most are quite old and picked up at auctions and garage sales.