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Old 03-10-2007, 12:54 AM   #1
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Dutch oven sticker shock!

As my kitchen experience grows... so do my cooking tools. Over the years, I find myself making better decisions on what tools I will actually use vs stuff that gets pushed to the back of the cabinet for the next 10 years. Admittedly, my cooking pans were always last to be considered in quality and use.

I have been trying to buy quality cookware, be it one piece at a time. I have been wanting to add a dutch oven to my cooking tools and set off to purchase one today without much thought or consideration. With my 20% off coupon in hand.. I headed out to the nearest BB&B and found the only dutch oven they carried by Caphlon (sp?) at a zesty price $127!!!! I expected around $60 or so I was quite amazed! I don't mind spending the money for a good quality product, but I have to ask you folks a few questions....

Is this something worth trying to find at a garage sale.. second hand? Perhaps some DCer has one they would be willing to part with..

Or is this truly a cooking investment that will be well worth it to "suck it up"?

I am sure there are far better places to look for cook ware, but just curious what you folks look for in a dutch oven?

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Old 03-10-2007, 04:12 AM   #2
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Buy this wonderful Dutch Oven and you will never regret it. It will serve you for many years to come and I truly believe that you deserve it.

If I had a quarter for every piece of junk that I have bought at a garage sale or second hand, I could buy it for you.

Either the lids are warped or the pot is. The lids never fit right on these second hand pots and pans. Once in a blue moon, something has been a good find.

People know the value of their stuff and garage sales can get pretty pricey. Once in a while, I see something that is $3 higher than the retail stores... brand new.

Your instinct led you to a good product and something that you will use frequently.
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Old 03-10-2007, 08:27 AM   #3
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A good Dutch oven is expensive (and worth it), but if you can find one at a garage sale for a bargain then why not?

Have you considered a cast iron Dutch oven that is not enameled, such as Lodge? Those will be much less expensive.
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Old 03-10-2007, 08:48 AM   #4
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I have a Le Creuset 6 quart dutch oven, and it is worth every penny my daughter spent to give it to me a few Christmases ago.
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Old 03-10-2007, 08:57 AM   #5
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Why do you want this "dutch" oven if you have an LC? I much prefer the heft of the enamel cast iron for the braising that I associate with dutch ovens (LCs are French ovens, of course! ;o) ). I have several sizes--5 qt.LC and 7 qt. Innova (under $50) plus a 2qt. French aluminum one that was my mother's.
Have you looked on Amazon? They have a Calphalon "chili pot" on sale often for under $50. Look in the Outlet.
But again, what purpose will this pot fill for your cooking choices?
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Old 03-10-2007, 10:11 AM   #6
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When I began my quest of finding a good dutch oven, I was dumbstruck by the prices, as well! After doing my research, my plan was this: narrow it down to one or two ovens that I felt I would be happiest with, then see which one I could get the best deal on. Eventually I found my 7.25 qt. Le Creuset on ebay for $145 for a first quality, and I'm not looking back! If you buy something of great quality and take care of it, your kids, and perhaps grandkids, will be able to enjoy it also.
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Old 03-10-2007, 12:07 PM   #7
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Folks, I appreciate the replies. I do believe this is one to "take the dive for". I still can't believe it costs that much... there is a side of me that screams..."It's a freakin pan!" I love to do braising, roasts, stews, and one pot meals so I thought this would be a perfect fit for that.

I got my spice grinder last night... so I'm pumped about that!!!!!
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Old 03-10-2007, 12:24 PM   #8
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you really need one, good, heavy, large pot.

i have my mother's fully clad 8 qt. ss stock pot from the 50's. i think it's u.s.a. made farberware, which back then, was pretty good stuff. couldn't have learned to cook (fairly well, imho) without it.

still, i've had my eye one some large le cruesets. the best deal i've found is a late summer, fall-ish sale in bloomingdales, combining sales and coupons to reach about 50 to 60 percent off retail. so the 7 or 8 qt rounds were around a buck fifty.

hey, dw's shopping expertise has rubbed off on me...
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Old 03-10-2007, 12:50 PM   #9
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[quote=sattie]Folks, I appreciate the replies. I do believe this is one to "take the dive for". I still can't believe it costs that much... there is a side of me that screams..."It's a freakin pan!" I love to do braising, roasts, stews, and one pot meals so I thought this would be a perfect fit for that.

Why not use your Le Creuset? It is heavier than any SS "dutch oven" will be and therefore has better heat retention/temperature evenness.

But if you want it the Calphalon one is $99 here
Amazon.com: dutch oven
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Old 03-10-2007, 02:26 PM   #10
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A good Dutch oven is a must. I have two Le Creuset (5-quart, 9-quart) and use them all the time. In fact, I never put them away they are used so often.

Yes, they seemed expensive at the time (each over $100), but I've never had a piece of cookware perform as they do.

I'd say "suck it up" and get a good one. If you use your 20% off coupon, the pan should cost around $100 at BB&B. However, you might want to check Amazon (shipping is free over $25) or eBay. One of my Le Creuset pans came from eBay. I've also found super prices at a site called CutleryAndMore.com: Wusthof Knives, All Clad Cookware, Henckels Cutlery, Calphalon, Le Creuset, John Boos & More.. You might check there, too.

Good luck in your quest.
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Old 03-10-2007, 02:39 PM   #11
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Send a message via Yahoo to Barb L.
Wink

I have an enamel cast iron I love, from NY bread, soups, stews. Got mine at Kitchen Galore for around $50.
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Old 03-10-2007, 03:06 PM   #12
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I have an enamel cast iron and the old fashioned just cast iron and a Revere Stainless Steel copper bottom Dutch Oven.

You must have ONE. I tried cooking mine in the cast iron (N Y Times Bread)it was too heavy. Prefer using ceramic insert from my crock pot.

Go for it...get a good pan. You will use and enjoy it for years.
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Old 03-10-2007, 03:27 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aria
I have an enamel cast iron and the old fashioned just cast iron and a Revere Stainless Steel copper bottom Dutch Oven.

You must have ONE. I tried cooking mine in the cast iron (N Y Times Bread)it was too heavy. Prefer using ceramic insert from my crock pot.

Go for it...get a good pan. You will use and enjoy it for years.
Why was the cast iron too heavy for the bread. You just dump the bread into it in the oven--no need to lift it. Just interested. ;o)
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Old 03-10-2007, 03:32 PM   #14
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Another excellent source for LC ovens is caplan Duval. Even though they are in canada, their prices even with shipping, are often/usually less than anyone else, with the possible exception of amazon.
The Mario Batali oven is nice--I gave them to our children for Christmas--and are often on sale on Amazon.

To me, a stainless steel dutch oven is just a stockpot with a different shape. I used to have a set of Club aluminum (how dated is that!!) and that is what they called their 6qt pot--a Dutch oven. But it was really just a heavy large metal pan.
Oh, Tuesday Morning has Cuisinart 8qt. stockpots right now--$40. Couldn't look more like Calphalon (and as heavy) if it actually were calphalon.
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Old 03-10-2007, 07:30 PM   #15
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Can I ask what you use a Dutch oven for?
I had what I called a Dutch oven that I used to take camping. Heavy, cast iron, three legs on the bottom. I used to cook breakfast on the inside of the lid and make killer all day beans in it, but the underground cooking never panned out. The charcoal kept going out.....
Anyway, I know you guys can't be talking about that kind of Dutch oven for kitchen use. I looked at some pics and it just looks like a large pot to me. What do you cook in it that it is a must have item? That you couldn't just use a large pot?

Thanks
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Old 03-10-2007, 07:52 PM   #16
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pacanis, a Dutch oven is most likely what you did use camping although yours is a little different than the kitchen variety. The camping type generally has three legs and the lip is flat with a lip. This is so you can put hot coals under it and also on top of it.

One that is more designed for the kitchen will not have the legs and the lid may not be flat with a lip. They are usually (but not always) cast iron.

A Dutch oven (also known as a French oven) is ideal for cooking things at a lower heat and for a long time. I use mine for stews, soups, beans, braises and things like that. You can use it for many many things, but where it excels is in dishing out even heat over a long time. The reason cast iron is usually used is that is grabs the heat and dishes it out very evenly so there are not hot spots in which things can burn.
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Old 03-10-2007, 07:59 PM   #17
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I own about 5 Dutch Ovens - and I enjoy using all of them.

Two of them are enamalled, one 8-qt. SS, one is a 5-qt. Lodge and one is an 8-qt. hard anodized aluminum one (Rachael Ray).
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Old 03-10-2007, 08:04 PM   #18
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I have this one, and it's very good for most things:

Calphalon - Products Search

I also have this one, and it's fabulous for potroast & vegies:

Amazon.com: Magnalite Classic 15-Inch Oval Covered Roaster: Kitchen & Housewares

And I have a round one that my parents got for a wedding present. It's still my favorite Dutch oven. It's over 60 years old, been used and used, and still one of the best pots I have.
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Old 03-10-2007, 08:14 PM   #19
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The one at Amazon.com, Chefs has it also, in the nonstick version.
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Old 03-10-2007, 09:21 PM   #20
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Thanks, GB. I wasn't sure where it was even used, but looking at your list of things to cook I see it's the stovetop and not the oven.
I don't think I would need one in the kitchen, but it's nice to learn about them.
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