This past year we decided to join a Dutch Oven cooking club. Which means once a month we meet and cook meals in our ovens and eat way too much good food. Its a great family event for us and we (and the boys) learn a useful skill…knowing how to cook using cast iron ovens over a fire/coals. I’m going to start blogging about our creations and our recipes.
This past weekend Klay had his quarterly Search and Rescue field training. And since we try to incorporate our whole family into our activities me and boys cooked in the Dutch Oven for the team. Well…I cooked and boys roasted marshmellows, played in the dirt, and took rides in the wagon.
On the menu for the day was spaghetti and chocolate chip cookie.
This one pot method for spaghetti has become my very favorite. For indoors and out! It is also very verstaile. Ive made it with lots of seasonal veggies as well as the more traditional meat and sauce version.
To make it I cooked a pound of italian sausage along with some minced garlic in my 14 inch dutch oven. Nothing technical about the heat here, just browning up the meat.
Once the meat was cooked I added a big can of crushed tomatoes, a big can of tomato sauce, and my spaghetti seasonings. I wish I could tell you a teaspoon of this and that but I cant. I just added a bunch of Italian Seasoning, Oregano, and some salt. Then tasted it…then added some more. Just use your best recipe. Or even jarred sauce. I then added a box of beef broth. Just make it really soupy, you can add more along if needed.
Then I bring it to a simmer. Once its good and hot add angel hair spaghetti. Or any noodle, but a good fine noodle cooks good without becoming gummy and starchy. I break them in half as I add them. I used one box. Give it a good stir. Put the lid on with a few coals on the lid. Again, nothing super technical with the heat, just want it simmering enough to cook the noodles. If it starts looking too dry before noodles get done add some more broth or water.
I think this dish was a hit. They scraped the pot clean!
I have a family of chocaholics. There are so many yummy fruit cobblers out there for the Dutch Oven, my family doesnt like them much. So I needed a chocolate option. What could be better than a big, hot, gooey chocolate chip cookie? Not much…just some ice cream on top!
There is no fancy Dutch Oven recipe for this. I just took my favorite cookie recipe and put it in my smaller 10 inch Dutch Oven. The 12 inch works good too, I like to keep it thin so a regular cookie recipe will make two. Rather than cook two separate cookings I did one in my 10 and one in my 12. I tried doubling and cooking in the bigger oven for a big crowd and it just didnt work well at all. It burnt, I was embarrassed because it worked SO well every other time I tried it. It might work well in one big pan but I suggest just doing two small ones.
I mixed up my favorite basic cookie recipe. Then I spread it in the pan. I highly suggest lining your oven for this recipe. Either use the liners or aluminum foil. Otherwise, the cookie will just be too hard to get out. I topped mine with chocolate chips because it makes the kids smile!
I’m sure there is a special formula for number of coals to temp etc. I just do a few on bottom, a few on top, and watch it closely to see if its burning or cooking unevenly. If I see one spot cooking faster I just try to rotate it frequently. Take it off as cooking is just starting to brown.
And this is why you need to line this. Just lift cookie out straight to a plate and cut and serve! You will not be disappointed.
I think they really enjoyed coming in from training to a hot meal. And it gave me and boys a way to be involved. They have already put in their requests f0r next quarter’s training….dumplings has been requested…might have to give that a go.