Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Best Dutch Oven



Teflon Alternatives 

We firmly believe that Teflon-style nonstick cookware is obsolete.  Why worry about PFOA/PTFE toxicity?  Nonstick Teflon alternatives are readily available!
In a previous post, we discussed various Dutch ovens and Dutch oven substitutes. (Click here to learn more)   In order to choose the best Dutch oven, a brief recap is in order:


Traditional Dutch Oven

In simple terms, a Dutch oven is a large pot with a tight-fitting lid.  Usually made from heavy-gauge cast iron, a Dutch oven can be used either on the range-top or in the oven.  Probably the most popular Dutch oven today is the Lodge Color Dutch Oven. 

More than 876 customer reviews.   Everyone wants one of these!


French Oven

The difference between a Dutch oven and a French oven is mostly semantic.  Does it make any difference if a cast iron pot is made in France?  In our opinion, the quality of construction is more important.  However, if you want a true French oven, buy the Le Creuset Enameled Cast-Iron 5-1/2-Quart French Oven.



Does your Dutch oven have small dimples on the underside of the lid?  A Staub Dutch oven or cocotte would have the small protuberances that create a self-basting effect.  A truly gorgeous and highly functional cocotte is the Staub Coq Au Vin Cocotte.  Check out the rooster!


Soup Pot

A good soup pot should have sloping sides with the top diameter significantly greater than the bottom diameter of the pot.  Buy a Le Creuset Enameled Cast-Iron 2-3/4-Quart Soup Pot as a smaller complement to your traditional Dutch oven.

Bouillabaisse Pot

A bouillabaisse pot is simply a large version of a soup pot.  It should be an enameled pot and it should have sloping sides.  The Le Creuset Enameled Cast-Iron 7-1/2-Quart Bouillabaisse Pot is probably the best enameled bouillabaisse pot.

What is the Best Dutch Oven?    

A well-equipped kitchen should have a variety of pots, each serving a specific purpose.  By definition, a Dutch oven is oven safe and therefore it can serve more than one purpose.  Teflon alternatives fall into two general categories – porcelain enamel (see above) and ceramic cookware.  Choose the best Dutch oven for your kitchen from the following:

Porcelain Enamel Cookware

Take your pick – a Dutch oven, a French oven, a cocotte, a soup pot, a bouillabaisse pot - we would heartily recommend any of the enamel pots listed above.  All are oven safe.  Whether it is a regular Dutch oven or one of the other pots, porcelain enamel is a proven performer.  Porcelain enamel is green cookware.  Most cooks like to have two – one large pot and one that is smaller.  Also, you may want to have either a soup pot or a bouillabaisse pot.  Having at least one pot with sloping sides is advantageous for slow cooking on the range top.  Learn more at Choosing an Enamel Pot.

Ceramic Hard-Anodized Cookware

Another Teflon alternative is the hard-anodized ceramic cookware made by Cuisinart.   As it stands today, the most eco-friendly cookware is Cuisinart GreenGourmet cookware.  In a previous post (Click here to visit Hard-Anodized Ceramic Cookware), we discussed GreenGourmet cookware at length.  Cuisinart ceramic cookware performs admirably and is highly rated by users. Watch for the GreenGourmet label.   Hard-anodized with the special Ceramica nonstick coating, the Cuisinart Dutch oven is a great choice.  Is it the best Dutch oven?  Because of its eco-friendly nature, this cookware should merit serious consideration.  Watch the video below and you will agree. 
Completely free of PFOA and PTFE – a true Teflon alternative! 

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