When we are camping and having a great time, the last thing you or I want to do is clean a bunch of pots!
Once your award-winning cobbler or famous stew has been eaten by all your buddies, it is time to get things cleaned up.
How do I clean my Dutch oven?
At this time we are usually all sitting around the fire visiting and having fun. Take your Dutch oven and fill it with water, up to the level that your food was cooking at. Then place the lid back on the Dutch oven and put it back on the coals. Let it sit and get hot, no need to bring it to a boil, every once in a while I will open it up and take my wooden spoon and scrap the bottom and the sides with it. I scrap the oven many times as we are all sitting around the fire. When you are scrapping the bottom and sides, there will be a time when you do not fill any lumps or bumps on the inside of your oven, at this time, get rid of the water in the oven.
WaLa! the Dutch oven is clean.
Wipe out the inside with a paper towel and put the lid back on. I usually put the oven back on the coals or the fire, with the lid cracked open, I do this to make sure the Dutch oven is good and dry.
If you leave a Dutch oven damp or with any water in it, this is what will ruin your dutch oven. It will start to rust really quickly with any amount of moisture. This is why I put it back on the heat, to make sure it is good and dry. When you are ready to put your oven away, put a light coat of cooking oil on the inside and outside of your oven, then wipe off the excess really good with a dry towel. Now it is ready for your next masterpiece!
As we are all around the campfire visiting, cleaning a cast iron Dutch oven does not seem to be a chore, it is just part of the evening ritual. Talking about how yummy the food was that was made for dinner or dessert, and what you are planning for the next outing.
This process will also work indoors on your stove.
The idea behind not washing your Dutch oven with harsh soap, is that washing it gently with water and scrapping the sides with a wooden spoon will preserve the seasoning on the inside of your cast iron Dutch oven. The reason you want to preserve it, is that this “seasoning” that is left on the inside of your oven prevents food from sticking.
To check out cast iron Dutch ovens, click HERE!