The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Lodge Dutch Oven Two

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meetmike's picture
meetmike

Lodge Dutch Oven Two

Thanks to all who helped out after Christmas with thoughts and experience using the Lodge Dutch oven to bake loaves per Jim Lahey's no knead method. Ended up pretty much following the instructions in "My Bread." The step-by-step photos are very clear. Instead of using a springform insert to support the proofing loaf, just covered a 8" cardboard round with tinfoil--local pro baker's suggestion. Dusted the tinfoil and cotton towel with bran. The round made it pretty easy to get the loaf to the Dutch oven, preheated to 475, and ease the loaf into the pot. Baked for 30 minutes, then removed lid and baked 15 more minutes to golden brown. Big oven spring! Dusting of medium coarse cornmeal in bottom of Dutch oven resulted in no sticking whatsoever and no burning. Made 3 loaves, one after the other, each with thick crust and chewy, open crumb. Love that cracking sound right out of the oven! I am happy baker! Mike in Maine

Comments

silkenpaw's picture
silkenpaw

...like the book instructs, when you put it in the dutch oven? You didn't put the foil-covered cardboard into the DO, did you? Glad you are having success with your bread. I love the crackling sound, too!

meetmike's picture
meetmike

You are correct: Gently flipped the loaf into the DO. Got a little careless the third time, as pretty tired by then, but non-centered placement didn't seem to bother the outcome. I was all ready to lower the tinfoiled cardboard round into the DO, but looked simpler just to do the flip. Mike in Maine

Nickisafoodie's picture
Nickisafoodie

I find that I do not need any parchment or dusting of flour or bran to make the loaves not stick to my cast iron dutch ovens- due to an over the top seasoning method. 


While some dutch ovens/combi cookers come preseasoned I find them to be not adequately seasoned and far from non-stick. 


Try this method:



  1. use crisco shortening, spread a thin coat inside and out using a paper towel- no puddles, just a smooth even coat

  2. place upside down on your oven rack.

  3. first coat heat 3 hours at 425 degrees. 

  4. carefully take the pots out while hot and put on another thin coat, put back in oven for 2 hours

  5. Do this 4 more times every 2 hours

  6. after final coat leave in oven 6 hours or overnight until totally bone dry rather than tacky


You will end up with a nice slippery sheen that is totally non stick and far superior to the preseasoned factory coating.  Downside is oven is on for a good part of a day and perhaps overnight until morning. But worth it as I put in several frying pans and two dutch ovens and lids.  I also read of another post that recommended flax seed oil as the best ever for seasoning, but have not tried that.

meetmike's picture
meetmike

This sounds like a great way to upgrade the Dutch Oven pre-seasoning and protect it for a long time. Also sounds like a chore best attempted when my wife goes to visit her sister for the weekend! Mike in Maine

jeb's picture
jeb

A fellow scouter has recommended bee's wax for seasoning dutch ovens. I am getting close to cleaning up mine and reseasoning it, but haven't tried bee's wax myself. Mine was seasoned originally with cooking oil. I've been using my 12" Lodge in my oven for bread, and I'm getting a bit of rust break through from all the steam!

Nickisafoodie's picture
Nickisafoodie

There will be no detectable smoke but there will be an odor.   No matter what I bake in my  oven, my smoke detector near the kitchen goes off.  I point a large floor fan up at the offending sensor and it stops in 30 seconds...  A can of glade helps after the fact!!


The advantage of shortening is it is a bit thicker than oil.  The factory uses oil when it preseasons but the coat is anything but non stick and you can see the pores in the cast iron.  Shortening requires less coats to get the same effect as is essentially oil that has been turned into a thicker blend via the hydronation process.  If you do use oil, you may need to do the above a few times more to get a good slick buildup. 


Meetmike, I am leery of wax - let us know how you make out if you go this route.  And suggest you do the multiple coat process too.