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Old 03-02-2015, 06:30 PM   #11
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It will be fine to use. You may also make the stock in the oven too.
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Old 03-02-2015, 07:29 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Blackitty View Post
Thank you all so very, very much!

It is a cast iron pot with a ceramic coat, so I don't know if people say "cast iron" or "ceramic" to answer that question. Metal seemed like it would get stuff burned to it in the oven (like baked beans or whathaveyou) and my aunt (who doesn't live close) told me that I should buy what she has because she's used it for fifty years and it's still in great shape, so I got that. It's made by Le Creuset, if you've heard of that. It got good reviews on amazon and was recommended by Cooks, which I guess is like the Consumer Reports of cooking stuff.

I can't make rules yet, lol. I don't have the solid base and would be building on sand. I'm still learning basic stuff. I grew up eating Shake n Bake and the like and never got any better than my mom. Adding tuna and peas to the Kraft dinner was my major culinary achievement. I never bothered to learn. If questioned about "braising", I'd have said it was "a cooking thing, I think." I have had to read about braising, roasting, searing, etc.

Not only couldn't I do these things, I didn't know what they were. Still haven't seared or braised anything. I have been focusing on making veggies and casseroles because that seemed easier than meat and trying to do all of it in one meal is just too overwhelming.

I google things like, "What is a parsnip?" I spend a lot of time in the produce department, just looking at stuff. "Yes, that's a rutabaga. I saw that online."

I buy one herb, pop some in my mouth to get the "in and of itself" flavor and then throw it in everything I make to see how I like it (and to use it up before it goes bad.) So far, I like thyme, am okay on rosemary and don't really taste parsley. I don't know what the rest of them even taste like yet.

Super newbie. In fact, get me a cape. I'm Super Newbie. ;)

It's a lot. A lot to learn, a LOT to buy and whole lot to mess up. But a lot of fun, too. :)

I so much appreciate people responding. It really is such a big help. You just don't know. Thank you.
Welcome to DC. I use my Le Creuset dutch oven to make stock all the time (mine is huge...it is the largest size they sell). The only thing you have to keep in mind is that if you want to put the lid on it in the oven, you need to know the temperature max for the handle. If I want to exceed that, I will cover the DO with a cookie sheet or alum. foil. Take good care of your Le Creuset and you will have it for your lifetime. Follow the instructions on how to care for it, use it, and Le Creuset will honour the lifetime guarantee at any point. I just got one of my smaller DO's replaced--after owning it for more than 30 years.


My mom bought me a set of Le Creuset when I graduated from high school. I did know how to cook, but have to say I'm a much better cook now than I was then. Good knives are a must as well.
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Old 03-02-2015, 09:01 PM   #13
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Welcome, blackkitty! As others mentioned, a ceramic coated cast iron (CI) pot can be used for many things. When you ask if you can cook "spaghetti", are you referring to the pasta or the sauce? You can use it for either, but tomatoes will probably leave a slight discoloration to the white enamel. It can be removed safely with a scrubber sponge, elbow grease, and a non-scratch cleanser like Bon Ami or Bar Keeper's Friend. ~ I use my CI stock pot (I have 2 - a 4 1/2 quart Le Creuset and a 6 quart Lodge) for a lot of things. Boiling rice or pasta, making stock or soup, making the cheese sauce for stove-top mac and cheese...after first using it to cook the pasta. I also use it for pot roast, although you can also start something like that on the stove top and then move to the oven. Like CWS mentioned, be careful that the lid nob is either oven-proof or protected.

As far as not knowing much, we ALL started out at that point! I bet no one was born knowing how to saute or braise. One bit of wisdom I like to share sounds like I'm teaching carpentry skills, but "measure twice". It's really more like measure once and double check the amount. Make sure you have all your ingredients lined up and you have the right measuring aids out. To this day I am my own prep-cook, measuring out each ingredient and lining it up in the order I'll need when making the dish. I learned the hard way...

Lastly, if you live somewhere with a basement, you can always store your less-used appliances and cookware down there. I frequently burn as many calories as I consume when cooking a dish, especially if I come back up from the basement and then say "dang, I forgot that....".
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Old 03-02-2015, 10:34 PM   #14
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Welcome, blackkitty! As others mentioned, a ceramic coated cast iron (CI) pot can be used for many things. When you ask if you can cook "spaghetti", are you referring to the pasta or the sauce? You can use it for either, but tomatoes will probably leave a slight discoloration to the white enamel. It can be removed safely with a scrubber sponge, elbow grease, and a non-scratch cleanser like Bon Ami or Bar Keeper's Friend. ~ I use my CI stock pot (I have 2 - a 4 1/2 quart Le Creuset and a 6 quart Lodge) for a lot of things. Boiling rice or pasta, making stock or soup, making the cheese sauce for stove-top mac and cheese...after first using it to cook the pasta. I also use it for pot roast, although you can also start something like that on the stove top and then move to the oven. Like CWS mentioned, be careful that the lid nob is either oven-proof or protected.

As far as not knowing much, we ALL started out at that point! I bet no one was born knowing how to saute or braise. One bit of wisdom I like to share sounds like I'm teaching carpentry skills, but "measure twice". It's really more like measure once and double check the amount. Make sure you have all your ingredients lined up and you have the right measuring aids out. To this day I am my own prep-cook, measuring out each ingredient and lining it up in the order I'll need when making the dish. I learned the hard way...

Lastly, if you live somewhere with a basement, you can always store your less-used appliances and cookware down there. I frequently burn as many calories as I consume when cooking a dish, especially if I come back up from the basement and then say "dang, I forgot that....".
The instructions I received with my Le Creuset indicate to use wood or silicon tools, not metal. I do not use any cleansers on my pans. I also make sure the pans are dry before storing them.

I too store many of the less-frequently used items in the basement. An unused closet in a spare bedroom works too. I view my kitchen as a workshop, so those items I use most often are readily accessible.
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Old 03-02-2015, 11:09 PM   #15
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I am loving all this info and plan to ask ten million questions. Thank you all so much!

Nope, no basements here. I'm in Florida and was told it was possible, but basements are VERY expensive. Something about the water level. I don't know anyone with a basement.

I was already thinking that if I get one more thing, I'm going to have to store some of it in a spare bedroom.

I used to have tons and tons of space in the kitchen. Excluding plates, pots and silverware, I had maybe eight things, all in one small drawer.. Now...it's kind of full.

I moved my tool kit and drill (and stuff my father gave me because he thought I should have it) out to the garage and my Christmas stuff got boxed up and moved out there, too, lol.

I always wondered why people had big pots on top of their fridges. Now I know! If I had to get one, that's where it was going!

Tomorrow, I make stock. I made some in a borrowed pot, but it smelled weird. I'm trying again. :)

Thanks!
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Old 03-03-2015, 02:02 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Blackitty View Post
I am loving all this info and plan to ask ten million questions. Thank you all so much!

Nope, no basements here. I'm in Florida and was told it was possible, but basements are VERY expensive. Something about the water level. I don't know anyone with a basement.

I was already thinking that if I get one more thing, I'm going to have to store some of it in a spare bedroom.

I used to have tons and tons of space in the kitchen. Excluding plates, pots and silverware, I had maybe eight things, all in one small drawer.. Now...it's kind of full.

I moved my tool kit and drill (and stuff my father gave me because he thought I should have it) out to the garage and my Christmas stuff got boxed up and moved out there, too, lol.

I always wondered why people had big pots on top of their fridges. Now I know! If I had to get one, that's where it was going!

Tomorrow, I make stock. I made some in a borrowed pot, but it smelled weird. I'm trying again. :)

Thanks!
Why did it smell weird? Was it the borrowed pot or the recipe? Perhaps if you tell us how you made your stock, we could help you before you start on a new pot of stock.
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Old 03-03-2015, 02:03 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by CWS4322 View Post
The instructions I received with my Le Creuset indicate to use wood or silicon tools, not metal. I do not use any cleansers on my pans. I also make sure the pans are dry before storing them...
I do use a plastic scrubber sponge like a Dobie pad, so I'm not too bad of a cookware "mommy". Every once in a while I do get a bit of stuck stuff on the interior that I feel needs to be gone. So far, so good. I'm sure you can suggest a better way to clean that so I don't damage the interior? I would appreciate it. My Le Creuset isn't as old/quality as yours is, either. I'm guessing since they it doesn't have a lifetime warranty, they aren't going to warn me that I might end up needing to buy a new dutch oven.
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Old 03-03-2015, 02:13 AM   #18
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...I moved my tool kit and drill (and stuff my father gave me because he thought I should have it) out to the garage and my Christmas stuff got boxed up and moved out there, too, lol....
Uh, oh. You might want to move the metal stuff back into the house and put your big mixing bowls and extra serving platters out there. I think stainless steel is safe enough to store "outside", but tools like pliers and screw drivers will probably rust quickly. My FIL learned that lesson after he had hung his tools over his garage workbench in their home in Cape Coral. Oops.

Glad you like DC so much! We're a group of people who love to share information, whether it's accurate or not.
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Old 03-03-2015, 12:23 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by Blackitty View Post
I am loving all this info and plan to ask ten million questions. Thank you all so much!

Nope, no basements here. I'm in Florida and was told it was possible, but basements are VERY expensive. Something about the water level. I don't know anyone with a basement.

I was already thinking that if I get one more thing, I'm going to have to store some of it in a spare bedroom.

I used to have tons and tons of space in the kitchen. Excluding plates, pots and silverware, I had maybe eight things, all in one small drawer.. Now...it's kind of full.

I moved my tool kit and drill (and stuff my father gave me because he thought I should have it) out to the garage and my Christmas stuff got boxed up and moved out there, too, lol.

I always wondered why people had big pots on top of their fridges. Now I know! If I had to get one, that's where it was going!

Tomorrow, I make stock. I made some in a borrowed pot, but it smelled weird. I'm trying again. :)

Thanks!
Welcome to Discuss Cooking. This is the place to ask questions - everyone has an opinion. If you learn to cook as well as you write, you should be a star in no time flat.

I agree that it's amazing how fast you can fill up your kitchen with stuff, even if you shop sensibly. (and most of us aren't as sensible as we could be) We just moved into a house with a smaller kitchen and far less cabinet space than either of our two previous homes. We had to convert a coat closet in the dining room into a pantry/pot and appliance storage closet. We finally have room to properly store the bread machine, 16 qt stockpot, 9 qt oval dutch oven, KA Pro 600 mixer, roasting pan, and a ton of durable can and paper goods and the like. And I now actually have a bit of counter space to use for prep work and making bread dough.

My biggest problem is, and always has been, my utensil drawers. They are always too full, no matter how often I cull out the unneeded stuff. If I buy one new item, I have to then sit down and figure out what I can get rid of.

Anyway, welcome and don't be shy.
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Old 03-03-2015, 01:00 PM   #20
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I have towel bars on the back wall (next to the stove, not over the stove) where I have the utensils I use most often hanging on "S" hooks. Because I had to have a cabinet for all the "cooking for the photographer stuff" before moving to the commercial kitchen, a friend was getting rid of one with glass doors and shelves
(actually 2 of them--one holds some cookbooks but is on a wall in the living room). I I now use the one unit (open concept living room, kitchen, dining room) for pantry items. On top of it, I store some pans. The bread machine and mixer on the bottom shelf. I have hooks on the side closest to the kitchen were some of the other tools hang. I have double-decker utensil inserts in my drawers and have a three of those plastic "rolybins" for the baking stuff. Those fit under my baker's table so are out of the way. I labeled the drawers so I know what is in them (and so others who help in my kitchen know where things go). Slowly but surely, my kitchen is becoming a workshop and not a kitchen.
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