Cooking in a Dutch oven

Classic Dutch‌ ‌Oven‌ ‌Cooking‌ ‌Over‌ ‌Fire‌ ‌Recipes‌

Now that the cooler weather is settling in, you may be dreaming of hearty and comforting soups and stews to ease into the colder weather. You might even be under the impression that mastering the perfect rich and velvety soup or stew recipe is a job best left for seasoned chefs. Not the case! See below to see how you can make a classic Dutch oven cooking over fire recipe work for you.

What is a Dutch oven?

But before you dive in, let's first discover what a Dutch oven is and why it's so popular for cooking over a hot, flaming fire. The KUDU Dutch oven is a large 3-leg cast iron pot and lid that you can place directly over hot coals or on an oven hanger if you're looking for a different and totally unique way of cooking. So unique that it first became known as a traditional potjie when Dutch settlers made their way to South Africa. And the rest, as they say, is history.

How it works

Although it can seem a bit intimidating at first, cooking with a potjie pot is actually quite easy to do. We will say this, though - it does require a bit of patience. And is not your average grab a bite to eat and run style of cooking. In fact, cooking over a potjie can take several hours. So be prepared to sit back and relax and make an occasion of this outdoor eating experience! But back to how it works. Simple in design, how the potjie works is actually quite genius. It acts as a portable pressure cooker to cook your meal low and slow while the steam escapes through the lid when it reaches the desired temperature.

Where to begin

If this is your first rodeo to potjie style cooking, you'll be pleased to know that the beginning steps are pretty straightforward. First things first, you'll need to get a fire going to start the cooking process. Contrary to popular belief, you can cook food in the potjie (also known as 'potjiekos') over charcoal, briquettes, or wood. Here, the base material chosen is not so important for taste (as the flavor will be created in the pot, not from the smoke around it). However, it is more crucial for temperature control. Simmer too gently, and you'll be there for forever and a day watching and waiting for your food to cook. Boil too quickly, and your meat will likely end up burnt or as tough as leather. Again, what you're aiming for is a slow but noticeable simmer to get the fall off the bone meat you're looking for.

What a Dutch oven is perfect for

Onto the actual cooking! There's nothing wrong with sticking to all-time classics. And if ever there was a Dutch oven recipe we'd pick for fall cooking, it would have to be our lamb neck potjie recipe. But you don't have to stop there. With the KUDU Dutch oven, you can roast meat for stew or add a side of freshly baked bread.

Caring for your potjie

After you're done cooking, you'll need to make sure your potjie is properly washed and cleaned before your next 'potjie day.' Make sure to use a good dose of soap and water to remove all traces of last night's Sunday dinner by hand (sorry folks, washing a potjie with a dishwasher is not ideal), taking care to dry your potjie pot thoroughly afterward. And when you're done, fill with pieces of newspaper to absorb any excess moisture within the pot.

Creating your own version of hot potjie goodness

Cooking on a potjie has never been easier or more accessible than with the KUDU grill and accessories. Challenge the cooler weather by creating your own version of hot potjie goodness with the KUDU Grill. Contact us today for more information.