birthday dutch oven

Look what my parents gave me for my birthday! Isn’t it beautiful?1

We have always drafted our pressure cooker into service when a recipe called for a dutch oven simply because it was the only thing we have that is large enough to accommodate stews or the like. The pressure cooker, of course, is an entirely different beast, and it doesn’t have the heavy bottom or ability to be transfered to the oven. (It also is not nearly as pretty!) Deb of Smitten Kitchen lists a dutch oven first in her list of essential kitchen items, noting, “Heavyweight pots that go from stove to oven are essential for any and every type of cooking […].” Any and every type of cooking!

Now that the 90-degree days are gone and fall is in sight, I’m excited about the things I can make with my beautiful blue dutch oven! I imagine chili, our stand-by pork and hominy stew, and perhaps a version of beef stew that doesn’t fill the apartment with smoke.2 The possibilities are endless!

1 Don’t judge it by the photo. I took the photo on my phone, and my phone is a barely functional piece of junk – but that’s another story for another day.

2 Honestly, I can’t remember what possessed us to make beef stew during this heat wave of a summer (maybe the temperature had dropped to 80 and we felt chilly?), and I still have no idea why it filled the apartment with smoke. So many, many things were wrong with that meal.


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