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  #1  
Old 09-04-2013, 09:41 AM
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Default Dutch Oven Restore and Beef Stew

August 23rd, 2013
Dutch Oven Restore and Beef Stew

After researching this subject to death I finally decided to restore my Dutch Oven. It was neglected from the last time I made my, "SQWIB Meets Bette Crocker Apple Butter" on the pit a few years ago, anyhow, the seasoning was done poorly before as I was a DO Newbie...well I'm still a DO newbie but a wee bit more edumacated!
This is not a tutorial but more of a documented experience, please do your homework and make an informed decision of your own.

But, Did I say But, yes indeed, BUT before you choose your seasoning oil, I urge yo to read this article. It is a game changer Chemistry of Cast Iron Seasoning: A Science-Based How-To
Sheryl Canter explains why Flax Seed oil is better than some of the more common oils.
However I decided to use the Camp Chef* CI Conditioner for my re season and love it.
Now with that said....
I will be re seasoning once again with Flax Seed oil, so please read Sheryl's article and read this article to the end before you make your decision.

OK, lets get started.
The piece to be restored is a Lodge Original Finish 8-Quart Deep Camp Dutch Oven.
You can purchase a pre-seasoned one Lodge Logic L12DCO3 Pre-Seasoned Cast-Iron Camp Dutch Oven, 8-Quart, but I would suggest seasoning yourself.
The re-season method I used, was to place in the oven on the clean cycle, then remove the rust and ash by steel wool and wire brush. There are a ton of methods, so do your homework.
Here is the Dutch Ovens from the oven, The larger one I had already begun to scrub down with steel wool, plenty of elbow grease needed here. The smaller one will not be restored, I do not like the incosistency in the wall thickness and how the lid sits. This was originaly purchased for a wood pan for a smoker and thats all it will ever be, sorry little guy!




I ordered a few tubes of CampChef's Cast Iron Conditioner, (The ingredients listed, in order, are: Organic Palm Oil, Organic Coconut Oil, Organic Sunflower Seed Oil, Vitamin E, Citric Acid.
I think it's great and well worth the price.

This is after I scrubbed with a steel wool pad.



This is the lid straight from the oven, after the clean cycle.



Left side almost done.



Starting the bottom of the lid.







Working the inside again, much of the rust you see in this photo is loose it washes right out, so before you go nuts with the wire wheel, wipe it out with a paper towel.




The DO was then washed with soap and water then placed in the oven to dry as it was warming up to 450.
As the oven is climbing to 450, the DO is removed from the oven, its just hot enough to where it can be handled so the conditioner would go on thin as possible.
Now for the first seasoning with the Conditioner.
Once the conditioner was spread thin, it was wiped down again and placed in the 450 upside down for 1 hour, then allowed to cool, this was done 5 times.





The 5th seasoning.



OK now I'm chomping at the bit to try this bad boy out.
A chimney of charcoal is started and I begin the food prep.



Meats ready to be sliced.



This was a very relaxing cook, all the food was prepped right on the table as I sat on my very comfy patio furniture while throwing back a few beers.



The fat is trimmed and will be used to season the DO.



The meat is sliced and cubed into bite size pieces. Ipicked this up because it was much cheaper than stewing beef.




DO Is heating up.



My makeshift lid lifter, I really need to get a lid lifter.



Fat is added to season the pan, then removed after 5 minutes or so.



A stick of butter is added.



The pan is a wee bit too hot, I need to be careful not to burn the butter.



The meat is added, while that cooks, the sausage is cubed.



About ten minutes later, the sausage is added.



Now many folks drain the meat, I leave it in for more flavor. The meat is very lean and trimmed, most of the fat will come from the sausage.
While that cooks, I slice up the onions (ungyuns)



About ten minutes later, the onion and two jalapenos are added.




While the Meat, Sausage and onions cook, I peel and dice the potatoes.



About 45 minutes into the cook, the potatoes are added with 16 oz of beef broth.
While the Meat, Sausage, onions and potatoes cook, I clean and chop the carrots.



About 60 minutes into the cook, the carrots are added.



Some spices are added, a bit of cracked pepper, a tablespoon or two of garlic salt, and a tablespoon of chili powder.



About 70 minutes into the cook, the mushrooms are added and another 16 oz of beef broth.
I had to laugh... my neighbor came over and we were having a beer while I was making the stew and every time I removed the lid he would say, "man that looks and smells awesome", then I dumped in the mushrooms and he looked like he saw a ghost. I said, "are you OK", and he replies, "man I hate mushrooms"!



Followed by a can of diced tomatoes. I was iffy on adding the tomatoes but at the last minute said, "oh what the hell'






A little cornstarch is mixed with a cup of dry vermouth and added to thicken the stew.




Cleanup was fairly easy, actualy just as easy as my crocks. I cleaned up the DO with a scrubbie and to insure a nice patina, seasoned a 6th time with the Camp Chef CI Conditioner.

OK, now I have seasoned the pan and am happy with it, using the Camp Chef CI Conditioner, however, I like to mess with things, and after researching this subject yet again and specifically researching Flax Seed oil, I got to try this and see if all the hype is true.

Thanks for tuning in!
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  #2  
Old 09-04-2013, 11:08 AM
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nice way to getter back to black...........stew looks good too.
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Old 09-04-2013, 11:09 AM
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That's sweet. Are those feed pans you are using to put the pot in.
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Old 09-04-2013, 11:12 AM
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Awesome post, I like the looks of that stew. Bet it was Awesome... for a job well done from start to finish...

Points police got me, gona have to spread them around first...
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  #5  
Old 09-04-2013, 11:29 AM
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Beautiful job on the restore! I have yet to try the flax seed oil but eDJ on here swears by it. Great looking stew, too...getting to be that time of the year for it!
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Old 09-04-2013, 12:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rbranstner View Post
That's sweet. Are those feed pans you are using to put the pot in.
Yes, think they were like 6 bucks or something.
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Old 09-04-2013, 12:03 PM
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Thanks guys.

Becky, I'm gonna strip this one and try the Flax seed oil I just got.
Hate to reseason, but its only got two cooks in it, si I might as well do it now!

Looking at yard sales for more CI too!
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Old 09-04-2013, 02:54 PM
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Nice restoration work! That stew really looks tasty too.
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Old 09-04-2013, 02:59 PM
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great job there!! well done!!
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Old 09-04-2013, 07:50 PM
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Very nice restore. Think I'll look into that conditioner. Might save me some time restoring some. Especially on the lighter rust.

Don't re-season! You took all that time to get it where it is. Leave it alone, it looks great. Now if it get's that bad in the future.....I'll come over and smack ya.....I'm kidding....then redo it. The next yard sale find, try the flax seed oil on. I know there has been some raves about the flax seed oil, but I'll stick to the lard (Crisco) or bacon grease. Think my folks or grandparents used flax seed oil on their CI? No. Everyone wants results right now. Seasoning takes time. Care. It works.

Lodge makes a hook for the lid, btw. I love a good beef stew in a DO. Yours looks awesome. You'd laugh if I told you about my first stew in Boy Scouts.
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Old 09-05-2013, 01:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RowdyRay View Post
Very nice restore. Think I'll look into that conditioner. Might save me some time restoring some. Especially on the lighter rust.

Don't re-season! You took all that time to get it where it is. Leave it alone, it looks great. Now if it get's that bad in the future.....I'll come over and smack ya.....I'm kidding....then redo it. The next yard sale find, try the flax seed oil on. I know there has been some raves about the flax seed oil, but I'll stick to the lard (Crisco) or bacon grease. Think my folks or grandparents used flax seed oil on their CI? No. Everyone wants results right now. Seasoning takes time. Care. It works.

The main reason I would reseason with Flax is the durability, it's supposed to hld up much better to abuse, I have an old pan that's been seasoned lord... I don't know how many years, however, it's gouged in areas where someone wasn't careful. I know Flax isn't diamond coating, but figured I just seasoned a few weeks ago, and want to re do with the flax before I start building up that beautiful coating.

Lodge makes a hook for the lid, I have been looking into the Mairs Dutch Oven Lid Lifter btw. I love a good beef stew in a DO. Yours looks awesome. You'd laugh if I told you about my first stew in Boy Scouts.
Dude you can't drop a bomb like that and not tell us what happened!
Look into the flax seed first
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Old 09-06-2013, 09:42 AM
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Let us know how the flaxseed oil does.
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Last edited by sweet_magnolia; 09-06-2013 at 10:09 AM.
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Old 09-06-2013, 09:56 PM
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Default Re:

If you want to prevent that rust from happening again try this after your iron is clean and dry. Coat with Flax Seed Oil and let it soak in and dry.

Then Make a couple cups of tea using Black Tea, teabags.

With the tea bags still wet and dripping rub these gently over the cooking surfaces of your iron. There are compounds in tea that help to prevent the rust. Black tea is rather common.

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Old 09-09-2013, 10:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eDJ View Post
If you want to prevent that rust from happening again try this after your iron is clean and dry. Coat with Flax Seed Oil and let it soak in and dry.

Then Make a couple cups of tea using Black Tea, teabags.

With the tea bags still wet and dripping rub these gently over the cooking surfaces of your iron. There are compounds in tea that help to prevent the rust. Black tea is rather common.

Cool. I have never heard that about the tea. I will have to give this a try!
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Old 09-10-2013, 12:45 PM
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Default Re:

I cooked out last night and used one of my DO's for scalloped potatoes.
Had Pork Tenderloins marinated in a Caribbean Jerk, marinated yellow squash, "wine brined" corn on the cob, and ATB's that grew on my plants. (hottest ever) I used one Habanero pepper from one my other pepper plants in the potatoes. These plants are some distance apart, but I think the Jalapeno's were hotter.

So I'm packing the left overs in plastic containers for the fridge now and will be cleaning up my DO, hitting it with some of the Flax seed oil and then brewing some black tea to go over the DO with.

I'm glad to see that Flax Seed Oil is hit and going over with the Iron Users.

My friends think my DO's are only for making Mac & Cheese, or Scalloped Potatoes LOL. They just love them and ask for them every time.

So I think I'm going to have to cook first and invite second so I'll be able to show them some other good things a DO can do.
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