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Cook with your indoor Dutch oven using charcoal


Suppose your Dutch oven is designed for inside use, with a rounded top and flat bottom. Can you modify it to work effectively outdoors? Yes, and here’s how.

by Leon Pantenburg

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The question was: How can I use my indoor Dutch oven outdoors with charcoal?

Well, a standard Dutch oven, without the legs and rimmed lid to hold coals, can easily be modified to cook with campfire coals or charcoal. Here’s what you need:

A pie crust shield or long piece of aluminum foil. A pie crust shield is designed to be placed on top of a pie being baked to keep the outer edges from getting too brown

Trivet: Every Dutch oven survival kit should have at least one of these. They are very useful for placing a lid on while you’re cooking, or using inside the oven to raise a flat dish off the bottom.

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These sourdough dinner rolls can easily be baked with charcoal using an indoor cast iron Dutch oven.

Here’s what to do:

Arrange the correct number of coals on the bottom as you would for cooking in a camp oven. (Check out this cookbook The Lodge Cast Iron Cookbook: A Treasury of Timeless, Delicious Recipes to get an idea of what you need.)

Turn the pie crust shield upside down on the lid. This will keep the lighted coals from sliding off.

Cook as you would with a regular camp oven, checking regularly to see how things are cooking. Dutch oven cooking is largely trial-and-error, so work with your setup to find the best combinations of recipes and heat.

Related:  12 tips for finding a safe campsite

Then have fun. Outdoor Dutch oven cooking can be a major enhancement to your camping experience.

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