View Full Version : Cast Iron pots - outdoors or in the fireplace
I am using the dutch ovens, but I am excited about finding some of these ancient style cauldrons. I am looking for an 8qt pot to make stews and soups when camping out at the renaissance fairs and buckskinner rendezvous.
*click here* (http://www.fortunecity.com/business/fribourg/389/iron_ware.htm)
My mom has something like that from the cast iron company and it is 12qt or maybe 16qts big. Very durable and big enough when you make like "meals for half the block". The only bad thing are, it takes for ever to heat up but the temp is more steady, and it needs alot of good support if cooking over a flame via a hanging method. First time we hanged ours up, it fell over. Get the best support and on even ground and it is good.
Another thing I've been seeing now awdays at the cookout and BBQ, are folks buying the propane burner ring like on the turkey fryers and light a gas fire underneath. I seen a guy cooking a whole pot of Chilli & beans in one of these. The spoon he had look like it was 8lbs or more.LOL
IMHO: I myself find stainless steel to be much better.
Cheaper than dirt
I spoke with my Mom a few minutes ago and found out the company is cast iron dpet and not company and they have a online website. Check them out;
The flat bottomed stainless steel pots would be better for sitting on an electric range or gas burner, but for cooking over the coals I prefer the cast iron for even heat distribution. The round bottom cauldons keep the liguid at the bottom which will prevent burning food. The domed lid allows for better heat circulation inside.
Also, the stainless steel pots just won't do for cooking out at a renaissance fair.
Anyway, thanks for the links. They have the 'Potjie' cast iron pots and cauldrons from South Africa. I just read that these pots were brought in by the early English and Dutch settlers and became popular with the natives in Africa.
I am thinking soups and stews for these large pots. I will continue to use the dutch ovens for baking. Meat? I would rather roast than boil, except for the afformentioned soups and stews. Of course these big cast iron pots can be used for roasting by piling coals on top.
Noway, do you have any pics of your cook outs with this large cauldron? What did your mom cook? Chili?
No pictures but I'll try to describe......
( very long )
She mainly cooks chilli w/beans & just plain beans for our annual family reunion.The big size pots holds alot of food which makes them great when you have like 180+ people, but beadvise, once filled with water and "food". It is quite heavy and needs a sturdy platform and is difficult to relocate.
The one my mom has easily is about 60lbs or more when food is in it cooking and my aunt has one much bigger that she brings.
I agreed stainless has it's purpose like on the stove or cooking on a heated element, but you got to admit it is alot lighter. ;)
P.S> If you had a permanent place that you always cook at, you might want to build a permanent bean support.
What we did was use a big 50+ yr old oaktree in the backyard and place a series of coals in a trench directly under the tree branch and hung the pots from the branch. Easy setup and teardown and once you finish, (you put some water on the fire and kick in the dirt and sand over the coals). That worked okay for a few years but recently we erected a 2 light-pole like structure sat in concrete close to our our tables and it has a arm that comes of it that supports the pots. At the base we have a open brick based bbq pit fire. The fire is between the 2 poles and the pots are hunged off each of their arms over the fire. My dad want to contstruct something fancy like swinging arms to remove the pots away from the fire but we never made it that far.
so if you look at our setup, we have beans cooking at one location and meats smoking or grilling at the other location. The ladies and mans are not in each other way and all of the cooking is done in the old ways outside over real wood burning fires.
One other method that I used in the past which might be idea for you, was a company had a big double iron ring metal frame that we used to "bottom support" the pot. It worked fine for the smaller size but once it fell over on us spelling the beans and in sand, we found out real quick it will sink in deep ( remember this weighs very heavier and the pot is like 40-60lbs or more weight). The rings are 2 rings in parrell with vertical weld bars every 6-8"s that holds the rings parrel to each other. The ring on top is slighter smaller and allows the pot to sit on it without falling thru. You construct you're fire inside of the rings and then carry the pot over and sit it on the top ring. You add wood or coals thru the openings of the vertical welded supports and you are able to stroke the fire this way also. This method of support is quick and portable and better if you don't have any vertical support method
no big tree
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