If you want to go beyond normal camp food for your next trip all you need is a Camp Dutch Oven. These heavy, thick-walled pots have long represented the easiest and most pleasurable means of making gourmet food in the outdoors. I’m talking cobbler, cornbread, even pizza. This must sound grand to all the camp lovers out there. Dutch ovens distribute heat evenly so you are less likely to burn your food while cooking. It will also retain heat longer, often a pot can be removed from the heat before the food is done the cooking and the heat retained in the pan will finish the cooking procedure. Since the cast iron will retain heat, there is less fuel required for cooking. The heavy lid seals the pot and steams the food, which keeps it moist and tender and thus these ovens are highly recommended for camping or hiking. The Cast iron or Camp Dutch oven is the preferred oven for outdoor and campfire cooking for a lot of beneficial factors. However, it all comes down to Camp Dutch Oven cleaning after cooking which many consider a hassle. But most cast-iron varieties now arrive from the factory pre-seasoned, making maintenance and cleaning less of a hassle.
Now there are a number of tips and tricks of Camp Dutch Oven cleaning that can be followed or maintained to make the cleaning of the Dutch oven hassle free and super easy.
a) Seasoning Process:
This is one of the easiest Camp Dutch Oven cleaning tips. This process is very important before starting to use the cast-iron oven as it makes cleaning a lot convenient. Aside from eliminating the protective coating, there are many reasons to season your cast iron Dutch oven. Firstly it creates a patina which helps prevent food from sticking making cleaning easier. It also prevents rusting and helps add flavor to food and most importantly the oil forms a carbon non-stick coating when heated. If the seasoning process is done then the cast iron oven becomes much easier to clean every time after cooking.
b) Cleaning the outer area:
Is there a lot of oil or sauce residues on the outer part of the camp dutch oven? Did some sort of splatter appear on the exterior of your pot and you have no clue where it came from, but you’d like it to be gone? Food director Carla Lalli Music recommends making a paste from baking soda and water and scrubbing it onto the pot with a Scotch-Brite pad to remove all those bothersome escapes and stains. This Camp Dutch Oven Cleaning trick is sure to fall in love with cause we bet you it is one of the most cleaning tips that can be applied in any kind of camp or normal Dutch ovens.
c) Be gentle with the interior:
Generally, the interior portion of the pot doesn’t need much scrubbing but if you cooked something that adhered itself to the bottom of the pot or you accidentally burned your food and the residue just won’t come off then there is an easy way to clean that up as well. Experts suggest that simply let the residues soak with hot water with a bit of soap or baking soda overnight and it should come right off with a sponge like magic afterward. This tip is hands down the best when you are in trouble.
d) Maintain the seasoned coating:
To always be able to clean the oven hassle free the seasoned coating needs to be maintained perfectly. And for that, you have to thoroughly dry the Dutch oven after usage by hanging it over or set it by the fire or stove with the lid a little askew. The warmth of the fire will heat up the insides of the pot, driving out any moistness and having the lid open a bit will let that moistness escape. This should only be about 5 minutes. When the Dutch oven is cool enough to work with, use a kitchen towel to buff a small amount of vegetable oil all over the inside and outside.Once you have a good, thick seasoned coating developed, you can safely use a bit of soap when cleaning, but it really shouldn’t be necessary.
e) Cleaning with soap:
Generally, it is highly discouraged to wash a seasoned cast iron Dutch oven with soap because it can easily damage the seasoned coating both outside and inside. But most of the time after cooking you will need to use soap and for that, it is suggested to use a mild soap mixed with water or you can drip a few drops of dish washer soap in a bowl of lukewarm water and clean the pot with a sponge gently. But make sure not to soak it in water and to add a little amount of vegetable oil and use a paper towel to remove the excess oil from the pot afterward.
f) Cleaning rust:
one of the most disturbing situation is when rust forms on your cast iron Dutch oven but fear not there is an easy cleaning tip to get rid of all the rust formed in the In the Midwest and other humid locations, Dutch ovens have a higher chance of rusting and require more care than in drier locations. The most common and effective way is to mix water and vinegar in a 50/50 proportion, and let the pot soak in the combination for an hour or up to six depending on how bad the rust on the pot is. Mildly scrub the rust away from the cast iron pot with your scrubber to finally reveal rust free pot. You can use a copper pad too.
These Dutch Oven Cleaning tips and tricks will always be there to save the day for you. By following and maintaining them you can easily keep your cast iron Dutch oven clean and always ready to grab it for camping. No more boring normal food when you go camping now. At some point, you will perhaps run into a situation where you have a disaster to clean up. At this point, you can either cross your fingers, scrub it all out or try to clean as described above or you can tell yourself it’s about time to reseason this old pot anyway.