I’ve had a Dutch oven in my kit room for about 10 years now and dabbled in cooking with it quite a few times.
What a versatile piece of kit the only issue with it is the weight. It’s not the sort of thing you throw in your backpack and carry on a thruhike, it’s the sort of kit that you take with you in a car where you don’t have to worry about walking with it and can take out of the car to your camp.
There’s many Different types but the one most versatile for camp cooking is the three legged Dutch oven.
A camp oven sits on three stubby legs over hot coals or briquettes. It usually comes with a flanged lid (formed with a lip on the outer edge) to keep ash or coals out of the food when the lid is lifted.
Simple as it sounds, a camp oven is a wonderfully versatile piece of equipment. Use it as a pot or sauté pan. Flip the lid over and use it as a griddle.
Or place the food inside the oven and fit the lid tightly over the top controlling the temperature by regulating the amount of embers on the lid.
One of my favourite things to cook in a Dutch oven is a joint of lamb.
There’s many different ways to cook it some people wrap the meat in foil to save the arduous cleaning of the oven but I prefer resting the meat on sliced potatoes and if the oven is really charred inside put it on a high heat to burn any residue of welded to the oven.
Also if the outside of your meat is burning the embers are to hot.
Let’s talk about the lid. The lid is what turns this pot into a oven but also flip the lid over and stick it in your coals and you have a perfect skillet for frying Bannock, cooking breakfast or frying fish.
I recommend adding a Dutch oven to your kit and search some recipes. There’s many books available on Amazon about Dutch oven cooking.
Try a roast chicken then use the Dutch oven to boils down a broth with the carcass and make a great chicken stew with dumplings this is my children’s favourite known as camping stew!
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After learning the knack of a few methods of fire lighting I’ve decided to remove the ‘good ole faithful’ ferro rod from my fire lighting kit and replace it with a more traditional method.
I took my son a few years ago on a bushcraft course with woodland ways and they showed us many different fire lighting methods, it was great for my son and also helped me out by improving my technique.
I had ago at igniting a spark using flint and a steel striker but have never got around to adding one to my kit.
So I discovered beaver bushcraft through the magic of you tube when I was researching methods and techniques and what a fantastic selection of goods they produce and sell.
2 days later a great little steel striker, flint, charcloth and amadou arrived at Home.
I am very impressed with the items they sell. I have been looking for a brass Hudson Bay tinder box for ages and much to my delight they also sell these.
The Hudson Bay Tobacco Box had been used as a tobacco box and a tinder box too. When exposed to sunlight, it was possible to ignite a fire through the sixfold magnifying glass lens.
The lens was hidden underneath the small lid. During twilight and darkness the tinder material (not included) stored underneath was used. A day off arrived and it was out into the woods with the dog to have ago with the flint and steel. Using a piece of charcloth (charred cotton) on top of the flint the steel is struck downwards to create a spark to create an ember on the charcloth to put in my nest of dried bracken and birch bark.
Once the best of tinder is alight it’s then easy to start your fire. Great products would definitely recommend a visit to their website.
Some photos from beaver bushcraft website.
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