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Archive for March, 2014

Fishing Tackle

March 29th, 2014 by ironcooker

Fishing Tackle – How to Know What the Best Fishing Tackle For Your Location

Fishing Tackle – How to Know What the Best Fishing Tackle For Your Location

An Article by Jimmy Harris

When it comes to being an effective fisherman, few components matter as much as your fishing tackle selection. You could be the best fisherman in the world, but without the right tackle for the fish you are fishing, you aren’t fishing-luresgoing to catch many fish-period. On the other hand, you could be the worst fisherman in the world, but if you have the correct tackle for your area, you still have a shot at catching your fish. As with fishing knots, fishing tackle is one of the fundamentals you need to master. So many people are so focused on technique that they completely forget about the fundamentals such as having correct fishing knots and tackle; this is just like trying to master the golf swing without knowing the right grip and setup. It just won’t work. The number one thing you need to understand is that the lures are the most crucial aspect of your tackle, and the one you should pay the most attention to. This is what’s going to make or break your success. What’s the best kind of lure to get? As with anything in fishing, it depends on what kind of fish you are going after, and where you plan on fishing. You need to know this information before you get fishing tackle. Consider not only the variety of fish you are targeting, but what they will be eating in the area you will be. Try to get lures that mimic what they eat as much has possible, as this is much more likely to attract them. If you don’t know what the fish in the area you will be fishing will be eating, call up the local fishing guides in the area, and ask what kind of lures they’d recommend. A pretty foolproof method, and one that’s virtually guaranteed to give you the correct fishing lures for your trip. If you plan on fishing in the same area many times, then the best method to learn the right tackle to use is to go fishing with an experienced fisherman for your first several trips, and see what equipment they use. There’s nothing like copying people who already have the skill you want to learn, as this is much quicker than attempting to learn it al yourself, which can take years of trial and 13-fishing tackle jigserror. So many people do this when they could cut a huge chunk of time out of their learning curve by simply modeling other top fisherman. Now that we’ve gotten the most important aspect of your tackle out of the way, there are still some important things you need to consider, such as gear. Always purchase clothing appropriate to wear you will be fishing, and the season as well. Where should you get your fishing tackle? Obviously, you can do so at your local fishing shops, but here is a much better method-buy them online. You can generally save a lot of money using this method, as the selection will be wider and if you search enough, you will probably save about 50% or more off the typical retail price for comparable offline fishing tackle.


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Posted in Hunting & Fishing Life | 7 Comments »

Dutch Oven Bread

March 28th, 2014 by ironcooker

Dutch Oven Bread

Home made Dutch Oven Bread: Kneaded Method

Dutch Oven Bread
5 hours
Yield: 1 loaf

4 cups flour (All-purpose or bread flour work best. For whole wheat: use 2 cups all-pupose and 2 cups whole wheat flour)

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon active dry yeast

1 1/2 cups warm water

olive oil for coating crust, if desired

5-6 quart Dutch Oven with lid

Parchment paper

Directions: Sliced bread

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, mix together the flour, salt, yeast, and water. Knead in mixer on medium speed for 10 minutes, until dough is smooth and elastic.
Cover bowl with plastic wrap or the lid of a pot and allow to rise for 2-4 hours until doubled in bulk.
Knead risen dough on a floured surface for a few minutes to remove air bubbles and to redistribute the yeast. Shape into a loose ball, set on a large piece of parchment paper, and cover with a towel for 10 minutes to allow gluten to relax.
Shape dough into a tight ball and lift the dough along with the parchment paper and place in the bottom of the Dutch Oven. Cover with the lid and allow to rise for an additional 30 minutes.
While dough finishes rising, preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Using a sharp knife, make two slits in the surface of the dough forming an “X” shape, and brush with olive oil and sprinkle with kosher salt (if desired, I prefer without.)
Bake, covered for 30 minutes in 450 degree oven. After 30 minutes, remove lid and lower heat to 375 degrees. Bake for 15 minutes longer, until bread is deep golden and sounds hollow when tapped.
Allow to cool on rack for 15 minutes before slicing.
Note: You do not need to oil the pot if you are baking on parchment paper. I have tried it without parchment paper, and instead oiled the pot, but found the bottom crust to be too dark/crunchy/oily for my taste. The texture was far superior when only parchment paper was used.

**Also, check to make sure the knob on the lid of your Dutch Oven is safe for use at 450 degrees. If you’re not sure, just unscrew the knob during baking. (Metal knobs and handles are fine.There is one specific type of handle from Le Creuset that is not recommended at this high of heat. There is more info available on their website.

Adapted from

Posted in Dutch Oven Recipes | No Comments »

Hiking Tips

March 22nd, 2014 by ironcooker


Hiking Tips To Help Make Your Outdoor Adventure Lots Of Fun

When you are camping, one of the most fun things you can do is go on a hike. It is great exercise; you can enjoy the outdoors, and you can see beautiful scenery. However, there are some dangers to hiking and you should be prepared for all events in order to remain safe and ensure you have a good time. Planning is essential so that you are not caught in a situation where you are not prepared. Use a backpack to store your items that you will take with you on a hike. Put heavier Hiking gearitems toward the bottom to help balance your center of gravity. If hiking with a group, distribute items equally amongst the group in case of an accident. If a backpack is lost and it was the only one that held the water or food, you might have a difficult time. Dress appropriately for the weather and bring a spare set of clothing. If it is cold, wear layers and make sure to wear a hat for maximum warmth. Wear two pairs of socks and good hiking boots so you do not slip. Wear sunglasses and use sunscreen. Even if it is cold, the sun can give you a very uncomfortable burn. Also use insect repellant to protect you from pests and bites. Bring emergency supplies in case of an accident. This should include a first aid kit, rope, a utility knife, matches and a flashlight. Always have plenty of food and water. You need to keep hydrated and nourished during a hike. Beef jerky and trail mix are excellent energy boosting foods and will help get you through the day. Water is essential but you may also pack drinks like Gatorade that have electrolytes. Do not overdo it. Take frequent breaks and rest when you feel tired. Pushing yourself to exhaustion is unsafe. Use a walking stick to help keep you from getting tired and help you in climbing and keeping your balance. If you feel weak or light headed, sit down, take your backpack off, and eat and drink a little until you feel rested and ready to go on. Be aware of your surroundings. The picturesque scenery is a great time to take photos or sketch. These can be enjoyable past times but it is also a chance to run into wild animals, snakes and have an accident from not paying attention. Do not venture off trails into brush that may contain snakes or other Bootspoisonous creatures. You may want to carry bear repellant and a whistle in case you come across a wild animal. A whistle can also be useful if you fall or are trapped. Research the area where you will be hiking and plan what you will need to take accordingly. Do not be surprised by sudden climate changes. Take pictures and sightsee. Enjoy the outdoors and have a lot of fun, but be safe and prepared for anything. With a little planning, you should be able to make the most of your hiking experience






Posted in Outdoor Hiking | 6 Comments »

The Minimum Outdoor Camping Gear You Need

March 21st, 2014 by ironcooker


 Outdoor camping requires good cooking gear

by: Rudy Silva

Summer camp is coming soon. Outdoor camping requires good cooking gear. Camping gear like tents, bags and or foods are basic. You should also bring waterproof storm jackets. You should use the summer for more camping activities. Read this article to get more camping ideas.

If you are planning to have an outdoor adventure, you need to be prepared with your outdoor camping gear. It is not necessary to bring everything from your kitchen and bedroom to have a comfortable condition. All you need to have is the survival gear.

Depending on your adventure, you can have hiking gear and camping and hunting gear. For all outdoor adventures, you will need the essentials including footwear, clothing, backpacks, camping tents, campground cooking tools and accessories.

camping tentsMost outdoor foot wear is camping boots and trekking and hiking shoes. For serious hikers and campers, REI has high-end products for backpacking boots. You can also check out the hiking shoes of The Walking Company for good options, if you are an enthusiast of urban treks. Most shoes of The Walking Company ensure comfort.

Clothes are very important outdoor camping gear, because it can be cold at night when you are on highlands like mountain tops or hill tops. Be sure to bring with you a waterproof storm jacket. Check out Patagonia, Moosejaw and Backcountry.

Eastern mountain sports make quality backpack. Their products include daypacks, hydration packs and multi-day packs. Backpacks need to be durable because they hold and keep valuables. Camping tents provide shelter and protection for you when you are outdoors.

You will be shielded against the scorching heat of the sun, the pouring rain, and the rushing wind. Tents keep you guarded from pests like mosquitoes, noseeums and flies. They also protect your valuables like camp gear.

Outdoor camping gear would not be complete without your cooking tools. Whether you love cooking, preparing raw foods or opening canned goods, you will need to use fire. In most camp sites, a separate ground for cooking is prepared.cast iron skillets

Be sure to bring a bag of charcoal, spatula, propane stove, few pots, skillet and you will never be hungry. You can bring meat for steaks, hot dogs, hamburgers and sandwiches. Among the camping accessories that you will need are the sleeping bags, compass and maps. You can also bring GPS.

Compass and maps are particularly important for people who visit a site for the first time or when there is no tour guide to provide directions. GPS devices are among the outdoor camping gear that is a product of technology innovation to make camping more convenient.

Sleeping bags and pads will not make you miss your bed at home. You will not have to sleep on hard ground as you can use cushions. You can choose inflatable pads or closed-cell pads. You will place your sleeping bag on top of the pads.

If you are new to camping or hiking, you should choose summer as the ideal season for you. If such is the case, you will not need an expensive sleeping bag for your outdoor camping gear. A lightweight rectangular sleeping bag will be comfortable for you.

If it is too warm, sleeping on top of it with a sheet or blanket is recommended. Of course, you need to bring pillow and blankets for a good night sleep. Hiking or camping is more enjoyable when you have complete outdoor camping gear.



About The Author

Stop by to select your outdoor camping gear now. We have complete gear selection for kids and men. We have the gear you need for cross country skiing. Do you need special books and DVD�s on sports? You can come to Gear equipment and discover a new world of camping supplies.

Posted in Family Camping | 2 Comments »

Making The Perfect Grilled Chicken

March 18th, 2014 by ironcooker



How to Make a Perfect Grilled Chicken

by: Angelica Florin

Grilling can be a fun, family activity during weekends. Spend your lazy afternoons in your backyard, and take out those grillers for a grilled chicken for your dinner.

Sweet and Sticky Grilled Chicken WingsLearning how to grill is not as hard as you would see on television. All you need is the proper temperature for your griller especially if you are using an electric grill. Nevertheless, if you have the conventional griller, try to find some dried wood or charcoal. Ignite the coals or wood by placing crumpled papers below each coal and then set the papers on fire. Do not pour gasoline on the coals or dried wood. The smoke coming from the coals will give a gasoline-like aroma to your grilled meat. These are your best weapons in grilling.

Choose the best part of the chicken. I usually use chicken thighs and legs since they are the fattiest parts of the chicken. These parts will yield a juicy, barbecued chicken. Although these may sound unhealthy, the taste is incredibly delicious. Some would still prefer grilling chicken breasts with the skins on.

Before you start grilling your chicken, do not forget to marinate them at least overnight. Yes, overnight. This is because the longer you marinade your meat, the better absorption of flavors happens. I prefer to use store-bought marinades as these save much preparation time in the kitchen. The downside of most ready-made marinades is their high sodium content. But if you have time, you can make your own marinade from scratch. In the recipe below, the marinade and the chicken were simmered together to speed up the process of grilling and also to let the flavors marry together. I like Asian-style marinades such as this:

For every kilo of chicken:

1 cup light soy sauce (available in the Asian section of grocery stores)

2-3 tablespoons of freshly squeezed lemon or lime juice

4 tablespoons brown sugar

1 medium stalk of lemon grass (pounded)

3 cloves crushed garlic

1 teaspoon sesame oil (optional)

Combine all the above ingredients in a heavy skillet and let it boil for two minutes. Add in the chicken and simmer for another five minutes. Drain the chicken in a colander and reserve the marinade for basting during grilling. Basting is necessary so that the chicken won’t dry out. The marinade can also be made as a sauce by making a basic roux. This is simply done by placing a tablespoon of butter on a non-stick pan and let it cook for minutes. Pour over the marinade and whisk until the sauce thickens. Taste the sauce and adjust the seasoning’s accordingly. Tamarind-Grilled-Chicken

You can also opt to make a dry, rub marinade. This dry rub is comprised of herbs and spices and a little oil. For chicken, dried or fresh tarragon and rosemary blends together very well. If you want a spicier, grilled chicken, add a pinch of chilli powder and cayenne pepper. There are limitless marinades for grilled chicken. A little imagination and creativity are the keys. Make sure that when grilling the chicken, never let the flame flare up. This will result in burnt chicken. This does not appeal both to the eyes and to the palate. If this occurs, sprinkle a little water over the flame. Some also like their grillers to be covered during the grilling process.

Personally, I liked mine uncovered. There is just something about the smoke which is, for me, the essence of grilling. Grilled foods are best served warm, right off the grill with some salads or other vegetables of your choice.


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Posted in Campfire Cooking | 32 Comments »

Iron Cookers New Location (Square Deal Country Store)

March 15th, 2014 by ironcooker

Square Deal Country Store

Iron Cooker

Iron Cooker has moved into a new location at
Square Deal Country Store 900 Woodmere Ave, Traverse City, MI 49686

Wood StovesIn a Convenient location with lots of parking and a great country store with everything from wood stoves to horse & cattle supplies.
Feed for your dog & cat or seed and fertilizer for your field and garden. Square Deal Country store has something for everyone.  There is boots & hats, new saddles for your horse & rugged clothing for working outside in the winter weather.
With a helpful staff that is ready to answer any questions you may have.

Iron Cooker Is very proud to be in this location so please stop by and see our new display.
Look through our products and catalogue we have on our shelves, take a card and call us if you have any questions on any products we have.

Square Deal Country Store Pet Supplies
You can call Square Deal Country Store at (231) 946-5030
Business Hours: Monday-Friday   8:30AM – 5:30PM / Saturday 9:00AM – 3:30PM

Posted in Iron Cooker Updates | 6 Comments »

Fishing Tackle

Saturday March 29th, 2014 in Hunting & Fishing Life | 7 Comments »

Dutch Oven Bread

Friday March 28th, 2014 in Dutch Oven Recipes | No Comments »

Hiking Tips

Saturday March 22nd, 2014 in Outdoor Hiking | 6 Comments »

The Minimum Outdoor Camping Gear You Need

Friday March 21st, 2014 in Family Camping | 2 Comments »

Making The Perfect Grilled Chicken

Tuesday March 18th, 2014 in Campfire Cooking | 32 Comments »

Iron Cookers New Location (Square Deal Country Store)

Saturday March 15th, 2014 in Iron Cooker Updates | 6 Comments »

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