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Video:Use a Dutch Oven While Camping

with Jacob Taxis

Dutch ovens are a great way to cook hearty meals while out camping, but there are some things to keep in mind while doing so. Here is a video with instructions and tips for using a Dutch oven while camping.See Transcript

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Transcript:Use a Dutch Oven While Camping

Hi, I'm Jacob Taxis for About.com. In this video, you will learn how to use a Dutch oven while camping.

Materials Needed for Dutch Ovens

Because of their great versatility, Dutch ovens have remained a favorite among campers. When it comes to preparing fresh, classic meals outdoors, few cooking items can compete with the Dutch oven. You'll want to find a camp or outdoor Dutch oven, ideally, with supportive legs and a sturdy wire handle. If your Dutch oven doesn't have legs, you'll need a stand on which your Dutch oven will be supported. This is so that you have space to distribute the heat underneath evenly. You will also need: ingredients for your recipe, hot pot tongs that are strong enough to lift the lid, charcoal, matches, heat or fire resistant gloves and wooden utensils.

Preparing Dutch Oven for Cooking With Campfire

Today, we'll be cooking a delicious campfire pizza. First, place a few crumpled sheets of newspaper in the pit. Then add on top a number of short, dried twigs, and add the charcoal. Avoid bunching up the coals, as this will lead to hot spots while cooking; instead, shift the coals around with your pliers to create a "checkerboard" or a circular layout. Finally, light a match and spread the flame around the newspaper. When the coals are white hot, you'll be ready to cook. Refrain from placing your Dutch oven over an open fire without food inside of it. If your oven is cast-iron, it could crack. If your Dutch oven is aluminum, it could possibly melt due to the extreme heat.

Make Pizza With Dutch Oven While Camping

Away from the heating coals, pour vegetable oil in the Dutch oven, spreading it around the bottom and sides. Spread out pizza dough in the base of the oven, patching if needed. Next, spread the tomato sauce evenly over the dough. Then, sprinkle with garlic powder, salt, and pepper to taste. Afterward, add your sliced pepperoni, onions, and any other toppings you prefer. Wait until later to add the cheese. Now, place the Dutch oven over the hot coals. Add hot coals to the top of the lid, and bake for approximately 10 minutes. Next, lift away the lid and add mozzarella and cheddar cheese. Set back the lid and when the cheese is good and melted, your pizza is complete. Carefully remove the oven from the coals, take out the pizza from the oven and serve.

Cleaning Dutch Oven

When it's time to clean your Dutch oven, there are a few things you should consider. If your oven is aluminum like this one, you can wash it out just as you would any other dish. But if your Dutch oven is cast iron, be sure to avoid harsh soaps and scouring pads. Soap will remain inside the pours of the oven, negatively affecting the taste of the food. Instead, try boiling water in the oven – this will help to loosen any foods stuck to the inside after cooking. Using a natural abrasive like salt will help to remove any food particles remaining in the oven.

Dutch Oven Safety

Remember to be cautious while using your Dutch oven. Obviously, during and after cooking the oven will be extremely hot to the touch. Dutch ovens can also be fairly heavy for their size, especially when full of food, so be careful when lifting and transporting. When storing your Dutch oven, be sure to keep it in a cool, dry place with the lid ajar. Cast iron Dutch ovens can easily rust and the oils inside the oven can become rancid if moisture is trapped inside the oven during storage. To avoid this, keep a small piece charcoal wrapped in paper towel inside the oven. This will help to remove any trapped moisture.

Dutch ovens can create a variety of meals to delight the senses on your camping trip – from pancakes to stews, the Dutch oven is ready to do it all. Thank you for watching. For more info, visit About.com.

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