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Archive for November, 2013

Thanksgiving Side Dishes: The Cast Iron/Dutch Oven Collection

November 27th, 2013 by ironcooker

Thanksgiving Side Dishes: The Cast Iron/Dutch Oven Collection
For November this year, we’ve gone out to gather up some of our favorite recipes that you can cook in a dutch oven or on iron cookware.  So even if you’re going ‘Over the River and Through the Wood’ as the song says, you might not even have to make it to Grandmother’s house to get a solid meal.

Before we run down the recipes, let’s look over the rules:

  1. Each recipe must be prepared using cast iron cookware or a dutch oven, or at least have a reasonable option to do so.
  2. We’re not covering turkeys.  There are already enough ways to make a turkey—oven-roasted, grilled, or even fried, for example.  We’re not going to through our hat into that particular debate.  But in case you think that’s disingenuous, have you thought about putting your bird on a spit?

Thanksgiving Stuffing & Dressing (via All Food Considered)

Thanksgiving Stuffing Dressing

Stuffing?  Dressing?  Is that the same thing?  These are all questions that you ask at the very beginning of the meal because that’s the only time you have enough attention and energy to care.  But whatever you call it, this savory and starchy side is better when meat is introduced.  A smoky, savory, spiced element really places against tender vegetables and makes a base of flavor for bread.  This recipe starts with a pound of pork sausage and ends with sage and thyme.  How do you go wrong?

Bacon Cheddar Corn Pudding (via Every Day Dutch Oven)

Bacon Cheddar Corn Pugging-banner

There’s definitely a checklist of things you need to have Thanksgiving: turkey, gravy, rolls, potatoes, stuffing—and after that, things get hazy.  If corn pudding isn’t on your list of must-haves, this year try it out.  This recipe is creamy and savory, where the natural sweetness of the corn plays against the sharp and salty notes of bacon, cheddar, and ranch dressing.  This pudding has literally all of the good stuff you want during a barbecue—but it’s served at Thanksgiving.

Mashed Potatoes (via Delicious As It Looks)

Mashed Patatoes

Mashed potatoes are the requisite starch at Thanksgiving.  It’s easy for most people to cover a pile in turkey gravy and never give them a second thought, we suggest this recipe that you might think twice to season yourself.

It starts with a base of red potatoes, smashed with milk and butter.  The fattiness in the dairy plays against the potatoes’ natural and somewhat waxy texture make for a silky, substantial side.  Finished with garlic oil, thyme, and fresh ground pepper, you may want to break out a separate dish so you can enjoy them on their own.

Shirley’s Apple Crisp (via Salted Sugared Spiced)

Shirley Apple Crisp

Honestly, what’s Thanksgiving without dessert?  This apple crisp takes advantage of one of our favorite seasonal fruits without being fussy.  You get exactly what you came for: tart apples, sugar, cinnamon, done.  You might ask, why not add in different kinds of apples, or other spices?  The answer is simple: you don’t need to.  As told in the introduction, this recipe has a 75 year history in the author’s family.  That’s an endorsement that I’d take in a heartbeat!

Do you have any favorite thanksgiving recipes that make you break out the cast iron or dutch ovens?  Will you be trying any of these recipes this year?  We’d love to hear your reactions and reviews in the comments below!

Posted in Dutch Oven Recipes, Iron Cookware Recipes | No Comments »

Videos: How to Season (or Re-Season) Your Cast Iron Cookware

November 15th, 2013 by ironcooker

How to Season Your Cast Iron Cookware
Recently, we here at Iron Cooker have been getting a few queries about how to season or re-season our cookware.  While it’s true that we’ve done a post about this, it’s just as true that there’re a few methods and takes on getting the job done.   Check out these resources to get the full account on how to revitalize your cookware.

How to Season Cast Iron (via does a really great job of going through some of the uses and process of seasoning.  It’s a very accessible, 5-step process:

  1. Scrub with soap
  2. Heat the oven
  3. Oil the pan
  4. Bake the pan
  5. Cool down

They do a good job of reminding you how to wash your cast iron pans after usage, making it seem as accessible and easy as it is.

Cast Iron, How to Season & Cure It! (via OurHalfAcreHomestead)

Alright, we all know not to use soap to clean our cast iron.  It’s almost hard to hear the words “cast iron” without someone stepping in to remind you of it.  But you know what?  It happens.  It’s one of the reasons why we’re talking about seasoning here in the first place!

That’s the starting point with this video, where the host admits to cleaning with soapy water pretty frequently.  Don’t make a habit of it yourself, but when you do slip up and let that happen, check out this video and use her technique, and you can still get some use out of your favorite cookware.

Stripping and Seasoning a Lodge Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Skillet (via The Culinary Fanatic)

In some cases, you’ll buy a pre-seasoned skillet that you want to season yourself.  If that’s your preference, this video may be your best friend.

The host has bought a pair of pre-seasoned skillets that he strips, modifies, and then re-seasons all on his own.  The tools are all fairly straight-forward, and it gives you the option to get the most out of your cookware, no matter what’s available.

Have you heard about any interesting takes on seasoning a cast-iron pan?  Have you seasoned one yourself?  Tell us all about your experiences in the comments below!

Posted in Iron Cooker Updates | 4 Comments »

Strawberry Pie

November 11th, 2013 by ironcooker

Strawberry Pie Recipe

Food is just better when you use your cast iron pans outdoors or inside your house and when it comes to pie there is no exception to this rule. So we are starting out this recipe with a cast iron pie pan from Camp Chef.
making strawberry pie    It happens to be one of my favorite and it is very user friendly. To make a pie crust you want to flour your counter or where ever you are going to roll out your crust.

Crust recipe

  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 8 tbsp. cold, unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 3 tbsp. very cold water

Mix flour – sugar & salt together then blend in butter with a pastry mixer or knife
Add water and roll into a ball. Then place in refrigerator to chill.  Preheat your oven to 425 and mix filling
4 c. strawberries
3/4 c. sugar
3/4 c. water
3 tbsp. cornstarch
1/4 tsp. salt

Roll out your crust so it is a little larger than your pan and then roll it on the rolling pin and transfer into your cast iron pie pan. Now you can prepare your pie filling.

Crush 1 cup strawberries, add 3/4 cup water and bring to a boil. Simmer 3 minutes. Strain juice from cooked strawberries and add water to make a full cup. Combine sugar, cornstarch and salt in same pan. Slowly add juice, stirring until smooth. Bring to a boil. Keep stirring until clear and thick then pour over sliced strawberries in your prepared pie pan. Roll out your crust so it is a little larger than your pan and then roll it on the rolling pin and transfer into your cast iron pie pan.
top pie crustNow we will make the top crust for your pie. Make your curst exactly the same except this time double the ingredients so you have more to work with.
Roll it out and use a pizza cutter to slice long ½ inch strips. With a pastry brush add a little cooking oil so it will be easy to work with.
Next lay them across your pie all one way until the pie is completely covered
fold back every other strip and lay one strip across the remaining and lay them back.
Do the same with the next row and so on until you have a weave across the whole pie.
Pinch the crust off on its edges and your almost done.

In a small bowl separate one egg white & brush on the top crust,baked pie
Bake in your heated oven for 35 to 35 minutes or golden brown.

Posted in Iron Cookware Recipes | No Comments »

Video – How to Cook a Ribeye

November 7th, 2013 by ironcooker

How to Cook a Ribeye
Steak is one of those foods where preparation matters.  Roadhouse or steakhouse, pan-fried or grilled, the way that the steak gets prepared colors and informs the rest of the meal.  And not to turn away the ladies in the audience (who are definitely invited to cook, order, and enjoy a steak as they please), but steak is also one of the consummate guy foods.  A staple for some, a classy meal for others saved for special occasions, knowing how to cook a steak the way you like is carnal empowerment.

Check out this video, ‘How to cook a ribeye steak… finally!’  With nothing more than a good piece of ribeye, your cast iron griddle, seasonings, olive oil, and five minutes, you won’t have any excuses anymore not to cook your own ribeye.

Our Takeaways

Our Takeaways
Chef Tim makes a few interesting points in this video.

Fat In Your Cuts

The very first thing they mention is that they’re using a ribeye because of the fatty bit in the top-center.  Fat is a great thing in uncooked steaks, it helps to keep the entire piece moist and really impart some good flavors.


He makes a great point about timing as it relates to temperature with your steak.  Leave it out for a little bit to get to room temperature and let it rest after it’s cooked.  The proteins and collagen in meet react to heat—obviously.  But waiting a few minutes on either end of the cooking process can make the steak turn out so much better.


This might seem small, but it’s important: for seasoning, step 1 is oil and step 2 is seasoning.  Get it wrong, and you’ll wash away any of the salt, pepper, or other seasonings that you wanted in your crust.

Test Doneness with the Thumb Test

We also get a quick demo of the new awesome way to avoid over-cooking your steak: the thumb test.  Chef Tim demonstrates this great little trick that lets you determine how well cooked your steak is just by touch.  But remember, take your steak off before it’s done so it can finish while it’s resting!

Do you have your own takeaways from this video?  Any great tips for cooking ribeye steak?  Or how about another video that we need to see?  Let us know in the comments below!

Posted in Campfire Cooking | 8 Comments »

November Updates

November 3rd, 2013 by ironcooker


Iron Cooker Tent Display



  Iron Cooker has expanded

We have moved our merchandise into two new locations. You can now find products such as Dutch ovens & cast iron skillets at Roys general store
Roy’s general store on 3 mile & Hammond road crossing in Traverse City. For you hunters that enjoy cooking on an open fire, look in our new location at
Up Your Attic Consignment on Woodmere right next to the Trophy Trolley in Traverse City. You will find an assortment of bread pans, cookie sheet pizza pan,
Up Your Attic bacon press tea kettles & Skookie skillet cookie mix combination for Christmas gifts at both locations. Stop in and check out their many other store items and tell them that
Iron Cooker recommended them to you!


Posted in Iron Cooker Updates | No Comments »

New Michigan Fishing Regulations

November 2nd, 2013 by ironcooker

Brook Trout fishing regulations has changed in upper Michigan.

These changes have taken effect   effective April 1, 2013. With these changes  that have been put in affect  The Michigan Department of Natural Resources  has approved five stream segments in the Upper Peninsula for an Brook Trout increase in the daily possession limit for brook trout from five to 10 fish. This is a big increase to the daily limit.The fishery division will be collecting information for the next several years on this to see the effects of the change.
With increase of fish in your possession you will have more to cook when we get back into camp. We always have our 15 inch skillet hanging in our cabin for this, There is nothing quite like the smell of preseasoned-cast-iron-15-inch-skilletwood smoke & fresh fried fish in a cast iron skillet. Be sure to check out this story & watch for more articles for updates on michigan fishing industry

Posted in Hunting & Fishing Life | 15 Comments »

Thanksgiving Side Dishes: The Cast Iron/Dutch Oven Collection

Wednesday November 27th, 2013 in Dutch Oven Recipes, Iron Cookware Recipes | No Comments »

Videos: How to Season (or Re-Season) Your Cast Iron Cookware

Friday November 15th, 2013 in Iron Cooker Updates | 4 Comments »

Strawberry Pie

Monday November 11th, 2013 in Iron Cookware Recipes | No Comments »

Video – How to Cook a Ribeye

Thursday November 7th, 2013 in Campfire Cooking | 8 Comments »

November Updates

Sunday November 3rd, 2013 in Iron Cooker Updates | No Comments »

New Michigan Fishing Regulations

Saturday November 2nd, 2013 in Hunting & Fishing Life | 15 Comments »

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