14 novembre 2012 ~ 0 Commentaire

My Dutch oven is one of my most valuable assets in the kitchen

My Dutch oven is one of my most valuable assets in the kitchen. I use it all year long, slightly more in the colder months. With my Dutch oven I prepare soups, stews, risottos and even bread. Of all the cookware in my kitchen this is the one I use almost every day. I have several Dutch ovens (of different dimensions, colors and manufacturers) and recently I bought a new Le Creuset Dutch oven (7-1/4 quart) and I made several dishes so far. Here is a list of my top 5 Le Creuset Dutch oven dishes. All these dishes require slow cooking on a medium to low heat setting. Here they are: 1. The No-Knead Bread: I’m absolutely delighted by this bread recipe. It’s very easy to make and you get a loaf of light bread with a crusty crust. This is a hands-off recipe so your kitchen won’t get messy afterwards.

 

You just mix 3 cups of all-purpose or bread flour, some instant yeast, some salt and warm water (1 1 cup). You mix it and leave it to rest for a while (12 to 18 hours). When the resting is over sprinkle with flour and fold the ends of the dough toward the center, leave it to rest for an hour and then place it in your Dutch oven, that you previously have heated in your oven at 450 F. Bake for 30 minutes with the lid on, and then uncover it and bake for another 15 – 30 minutes. And here is your fresh baked bread. 2. Minestrone: the minestrone or vegetable soup is one of my favorite light dishes. It’s a great all year long dish because, depending on the fresh vegetables available on your local market, you can make a winter or summer vegetable soup. In my summer minestrone I use fresh carrots, peas, tomatoes, corn, spinach, green beans and cauliflower. My winter variation is heavier. I use again carrots, potatoes, beans, celery, leek or cabbage. Even though I prefer fresh vegetables I sometimes use the frozen ones. The minestrone is great when you are on a diet because it’s low calories.

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