Tuesday, September 06, 2005

A Level Cooking Field

A level pot is critical for baking in the Dutch oven. Cakes, pies and cobblers are best baked on a flat surface. Otherwise, you’ll end up with an unevenly baked dessert. The thin portion will be overcooked.

At our picnic at Sly Park yesterday, standing barbecue grill for a Dutch oven table. The chili pot legs didn’t fit snuggly in the grill slats. The 12-inch deep style Dutch oven leaned about 10 degrees as a result.

The cornbread oven before I moved it to the top side of the chili pot lid.
 I wasn’t worried about the chuckwagon chili. Chili, stews and most casseroles won’t suffer in a lopsided oven when stirred. I’ve cooked many stews, roasts and casseroles on uneven ground with little ill effect.

To create a level surface for the cornbread pot, I moved the 10-inch Dutch oven to oven side of the chili pot. This way I took advantage of the coals on lid to the chili pot and made best use of the limited grill surface.

The cornbread oven after being moved to the top end of the chili pot lid. (The oven still appears lopsided through the magic of modern digital photography!)

I could've baked the cornbread on the ground. There was little vegetation in the picnic area yesterday. Although I didn't see a great fire danger, I'm concerned about my back. I cook at table-top level when possible these days.

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