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Old 03-25-2005, 09:32 PM   #1
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Cooking Table

I've seens steel tables for cooking on. This design brings the dutch oven right up your level. Does anyone know if there are plans for making one online?

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Old 04-10-2007, 06:30 PM   #2
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I'm sure there must be some plans somewhere, but I made my own.

I'm a full time RV'er, so space is at a premium for me. I already had 2 aluminum fold up saw horses that I carry with me to use on small projects. I also have a 4' X 2' piece of 1/2" plywood that fits in a slideout tray in our storage area that I clamp to these 2 saw horses. That makes a handy work table if I need one. I usually have this table set up at the end of a picnic table, so I can use it to set my grill on, or other things that we're using for a meal or a project.

I got to thinking about getting a DO table, because I'm getting tired of getting up and down on the ground. I found out that many of these Do tables are made out of 10 gauge steel. So I went out and bought a 4' X 2' piece of steel and had a piece of 1/2" angle iron welded to the long side of the sheet. This is keep the coals from slipping off the table, or even the DO. The beauty of this is that the 1/2" plywood fits inside of the angle iron so I still have a wooden platform/table. But when I'm ready to do a little DO cooking, I remove the plywood and there's the steel table. I do clamp the steel table to the saw horses with a couple of C clamps just to keep from knocking anything over. And it doesn't take up any more room in my storage bay than just the plywood did. The whole thing cost me $62.00.

I'll try to attach a couple of pictures that show this.
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Old 04-11-2007, 12:56 PM   #3
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The topic of building Dutch oven (DO) tables is discussed from time to time on other DO forums, but I've never seen anyone mention plans for them on line.

For $65 you can get a very nice DO table that's made by Camp Chef. Before we bought it, we cooked on tables we'd fashioned using a 55-gallon drum lid and a plow disk as the cooking surfaces. If you don't want to invest a lot of money on a table, you might look around to see what you already have that you can use. I've seen a lot of innovative cooking surfaces over the years.
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Old 04-15-2007, 02:39 PM   #4
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Thank you for your kind reply. What kind of cooking do you do in your dutch oven? I've not started yet. I use mine for frying chicken on the stove (just to say I'm using it. And where do you get your recipes?

Greg


Quote:
Originally Posted by Dutchess
The topic of building Dutch oven (DO) tables is discussed from time to time on other DO forums, but I've never seen anyone mention plans for them on line.

For $65 you can get a very nice DO table that's made by Camp Chef. Before we bought it, we cooked on tables we'd fashioned using a 55-gallon drum lid and a plow disk as the cooking surfaces. If you don't want to invest a lot of money on a table, you might look around to see what you already have that you can use. I've seen a lot of innovative cooking surfaces over the years.
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Old 04-15-2007, 02:41 PM   #5
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Thanks Garry,

As I mentioned to Dutchess, I've not started to cook with my dutch oven yet. I found a metal table and a shelve that will work, I think. Now that winter is over I think I'll be able to begin. What do you recommend for beginning cooking.

Greg

Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfgar4
I'm sure there must be some plans somewhere, but I made my own.

I'm a full time RV'er, so space is at a premium for me. I already had 2 aluminum fold up saw horses that I carry with me to use on small projects. I also have a 4' X 2' piece of 1/2" plywood that fits in a slideout tray in our storage area that I clamp to these 2 saw horses. That makes a handy work table if I need one. I usually have this table set up at the end of a picnic table, so I can use it to set my grill on, or other things that we're using for a meal or a project.

I got to thinking about getting a DO table, because I'm getting tired of getting up and down on the ground. I found out that many of these Do tables are made out of 10 gauge steel. So I went out and bought a 4' X 2' piece of steel and had a piece of 1/2" angle iron welded to the long side of the sheet. This is keep the coals from slipping off the table, or even the DO. The beauty of this is that the 1/2" plywood fits inside of the angle iron so I still have a wooden platform/table. But when I'm ready to do a little DO cooking, I remove the plywood and there's the steel table. I do clamp the steel table to the saw horses with a couple of C clamps just to keep from knocking anything over. And it doesn't take up any more room in my storage bay than just the plywood did. The whole thing cost me $62.00.

I'll try to attach a couple of pictures that show this.
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Old 04-15-2007, 04:37 PM   #6
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Hi Greg,

First, I've fairly new to DO cooking myself. Actually, I've taken it up again after not having done any since I was involved in Scouting back in the mid '90's.

I've been very fortunate in that since I've started trying my hand at it, I've not had any failures. Knock on wood! But all the recipes that I've tried have been very straightforward and reasonably easy. Most of the ones I've done so far I got from Byron's Dutch Oven Recipes. Here's a link to the site: Byron's Dutch Oven Recipes.

I've also done a google search for "dutch oven recipes" and found a number of other sites. That's also how I found Byron's. Believe me, if you start doing a little surfing, you'll find recipes. And of course, this forum has some really great looking recipes. I've also purchased a few DO cooking books that have lots of recipes in them.

I tend to use recipes that clearly state what size DO it's for and how many briquettes to use on the top and the bottom. Now that I've done a few, I'm finding I'm starting to have a feel for how many are needed, even while the cooking is going on.

I think starting out with some simple dump cake recipes or cobblers is a good way to get your feet wet. Those recipes are very easy, and it's hard to mess them up. My very first cake was a pineapple upside down cake, and I've attached a picture of it for you. It turned out great, and it gave me a lot of confidence. My first "meal" was the Mountainman Breakfast, and it was really good. There's a thread in this forum about bthat very meal that you could check out.

And finally, I guess I'd say that you shouldn't worry about screwing up a recipe. I went in to this thing assuming I was going to have failures. And I always inform my family/guests when I'm doing a recipe for the first time that they will be guinea pigs, and I make them rate the success/failure of it for me. Trust me, they WILL be honest!

I hope this helps, and I hope you let us know what you do and you continue to post here so that we can compare successes!
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Old 04-18-2007, 11:10 PM   #7
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Wow, now I'm inspired. It was in Weblos training that I saw a DU pro at work. He had us do the work as he instructed. Turkey, veggies and a cobbler as I recall. Three dutch ovens at work, two stacked and the cobbler separately,

Thanks for the leads and encouragement. I'm about ready to start.

Did or do you cook in the winter? I've always wondered about that.

Greg

Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfgar4
Hi Greg,

First, I've fairly new to DO cooking myself. Actually, I've taken it up again after not having done any since I was involved in Scouting back in the mid '90's.

I've been very fortunate in that since I've started trying my hand at it, I've not had any failures. Knock on wood! But all the recipes that I've tried have been very straightforward and reasonably easy. Most of the ones I've done so far I got from Byron's Dutch Oven Recipes. Here's a link to the site: Byron's Dutch Oven Recipes.

I've also done a google search for "dutch oven recipes" and found a number of other sites. That's also how I found Byron's. Believe me, if you start doing a little surfing, you'll find recipes. And of course, this forum has some really great looking recipes. I've also purchased a few DO cooking books that have lots of recipes in them.

I tend to use recipes that clearly state what size DO it's for and how many briquettes to use on the top and the bottom. Now that I've done a few, I'm finding I'm starting to have a feel for how many are needed, even while the cooking is going on.

I think starting out with some simple dump cake recipes or cobblers is a good way to get your feet wet. Those recipes are very easy, and it's hard to mess them up. My very first cake was a pineapple upside down cake, and I've attached a picture of it for you. It turned out great, and it gave me a lot of confidence. My first "meal" was the Mountainman Breakfast, and it was really good. There's a thread in this forum about bthat very meal that you could check out.

And finally, I guess I'd say that you shouldn't worry about screwing up a recipe. I went in to this thing assuming I was going to have failures. And I always inform my family/guests when I'm doing a recipe for the first time that they will be guinea pigs, and I make them rate the success/failure of it for me. Trust me, they WILL be honest!

I hope this helps, and I hope you let us know what you do and you continue to post here so that we can compare successes!
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Old 04-18-2007, 11:32 PM   #8
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I guess you could say that I cook in the winter. I'm from Wisconsin! You know, The Frozen Tundra.

Seriously, I think outdoor cooking is the best in the winter time. There's nothing like standing around a warm fire (or bed of coals or whatever you're using) on a cold, crisp day and cooking something tasty. And whatever it is that you're cooking ALWAYS tastes that much better when you're eating outside. Just remember one thing about winter cooking. Once you get your fire or coals going, the very first thing you put on is the coffee!
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Old 04-19-2007, 07:15 AM   #9
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When coolking during winter. How much of an adjustment do you have to make for the cold with coals?

Do you have some kind of cover for rain or snow?

I'll be out of town, and unlikely able to attend to my computer for about four days. So I'm not ignoring you. But most importantly, thanks for taking the time to answer my questions and share your insites.

Greg

Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfgar4
I guess you could say that I cook in the winter. I'm from Wisconsin! You know, The Frozen Tundra.

Seriously, I think outdoor cooking is the best in the winter time. There's nothing like standing around a warm fire (or bed of coals or whatever you're using) on a cold, crisp day and cooking something tasty. And whatever it is that you're cooking ALWAYS tastes that much better when you're eating outside. Just remember one thing about winter cooking. Once you get your fire or coals going, the very first thing you put on is the coffee!
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Old 04-19-2007, 09:46 AM   #10
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I don't worry too much about adjusting the number of coals if it's cold. I'm not going to be out there when it's below zero, so what we're talking about is cooking in 20's and 30's. Unless there's a wind blowing, adjusting the coals isn't really necessary. Remembering that 1 coal represents approximately 25 degrees of heat, I might add 1 more piece of coal on the top and the bottom.

I'm old enough and wise enough now to understand if a cover is needed because of rain, I'm not going to be out there. And unless it's an absolute blizzard out there, cooking during a snowfall can be awesome. When I was in scouting, we did cook in any weather because we had to or we didn't eat. It can be done, but it may not be as much fun. If I had a backyard where I was doing the cooking, I would consider setting up one of those portable dining flys or canopies just to make it a little more comfortable for myself.

Have a good trip. I guess I could say the same thing. We're leaving this park on Sunday, and I don't know when I'll have wi-fi available again. We'll be on the move until May 1st when we arrive at Yellowstone. Once we get there, I'll be getting a phone line and signing up for dial up service so that I can get out on the internet. Don't have any idea how long it might take to get all of that coordinated.

So maybe the next time I get back here, you'll be able to post some of your first results!
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Old 04-19-2007, 10:21 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nightjar
Thank you for your kind reply. What kind of cooking do you do in your dutch oven? I've not started yet. I use mine for frying chicken on the stove (just to say I'm using it. And where do you get your recipes?
Greg
Sorry I’m slow getting back to you. You asked what kind of cooking I do. The answer is I’ve done pretty much a little bit of everything in my Dutch ovens (including making ice cream!). That’s the beauty of the Dutch oven (DO), you can make pretty much anything in one that you can make at home. If you have favorite recipes you use now, they’re perfectly usable at camp in a DO. The most challenging part is learning how to control the heat. That’s one reason why a lot of beginners like to start with so-called “Dutch oven recipes,” i.e., recipes whose instructions have been written to include the proper number of briquettes and oven size, because it removes the guesswork. On the other hand, some people like to start out using recipes they’re already familiar with making. The advantage of that is you already know what the food is supposed to do and what it’ll look like when done, etc. It saves a lot of wondering if it’s cooking as it should, because you already know how things should progress. That’s a big help when you’re learning a new technique. Then when they master getting the heat right, they move on to new recipes. Just go with whichever approach you’re most comfortable. As far as where to get recipes, there are a number of sites online dedicated to DO cooking as well as a number of cookbooks on the market. A Google search should turn up quite a few for you. Byron’s site that Greg mentioned is a good one. If you go to The MacScouter -- Scouting Resources Online, they have a couple of whole cookbooks you can download. I really enjoy collecting and trying out new recipes, so the ones I use come from every imaginable source (cooking forums, cooking mags, cookbooks, online sites such as allrecipes.com, etc.).

You might want to consider experimenting with your DO outside at home before you take it to camp. At home, you have other options if something flops, while at camp you might have limited food supplies. If nothing else, start out with a cornbread mix or tube biscuits, they’re inexpensive ways to help you get a feel for temperature control.

Good luck, and let us know how it goes!
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Old 04-28-2007, 10:09 PM   #12
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Starting the DO

Thanks for your reply. I forgot to check my email for quite a long time, (unusual for me) So I didn't realize that you and Gerry had responded. I'm hoping to do my first attempt tomorrow. I was hoping for today but it started raining, fortunately I hadn't started anything yet.

I'm hoping to start with cornbread because I love it so much. I have a really good biscuit recipe but this one is strictly for a controlled oven an requires changing recipes but it's goood! So maybe I'll do a "tube" biscuit first and then I'll do one of the DO recommended ones.

Thanks again.

Greg
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Old 04-28-2007, 10:17 PM   #13
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Thanks again

As I told Duchess, I've not yet done any DO but am planning to break in with cornbread. Safe and tasty. I do indeed appreciate your help and advise, especially with the winter cooking. Although it's not an issue now I still was curious.

I'll give you an update as soon as I burn, er cook my cornbread. Buscuits are next.
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Old 05-11-2007, 06:29 PM   #14
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Just bought the 38" Cooking Table from Camp Chef, today. Mighty good looking table. Hopefully this will save my back and allow me more room for other dishes.
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Old 05-12-2007, 10:04 AM   #15
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Cajun_1's Cooking Table

Hi,

This sounds great! Who makes this and how high is it? Is the 36" in height or width?

I made a makeshift one, out of a file drawer, but realized that it doesn't really give me a chance to move the DO from one side to another along with having coals burning in another area for replentishing.

Greg

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Just bought the 38" Cooking Table from Camp Chef, today. Mighty good looking table. Hopefully this will save my back and allow me more room for other dishes.
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Old 05-12-2007, 11:51 AM   #16
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Camp Chef The Way to Cook Outdoors! - Camp Table With Legs 38"
Here's the website for the cooking table I bought yesterday. I haven't used it because it's still in my living room. Hopefully tomorrow I will break it in.
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Old 05-13-2007, 09:02 AM   #17
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You're gonna love Camp Chef's table. It took me forever to convince my DH we needed one, and now he wouldn't part with it. We just recently added the side shelves so we have even more work space. This table is well worth the money.
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Old 05-13-2007, 10:02 AM   #18
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I saw the shelves on the website. They may have to be purchased at a later time. For now I just want to enjoy this table. Thanks.
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Old 01-22-2009, 03:46 PM   #19
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Cool D/O table

I bought one of these on eBay last week. It's probably the coolest Dutch oven table I've seen yet
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Old 01-22-2009, 04:01 PM   #20
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That's a sweet setup Jim... I keep telling myself that I dont need anymore iron....not one more piece... but I dont have one of the DO's that you can put coal on top.

You have the table too oh man... sweet
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