I don’t think you need a lot of special tools to make great meals. In fact, I think a sturdy set of pots and pans and a few sharp, comfortable knives are all you really need to make incredible meals. A few Christmas’s ago my husband purchased a set of high-quality, non-stick pots and pans for me and I used them for years without yearning for anything else.
That is until I watched a couple of cooking shows on the Food Network where chefs prepared meals in dutch ovens. I immediately fell in love with the idea of transferring a pot from the stove top to the oven. I searched for a mid-range, quality pot that would provide me with the ability to make amazing soups, roasts and stews.
I immediately added it to last year’s Christmas list and told my parents I wanted it above and beyond any other present they could possibly buy me. My mom isn’t a cook, so I actually pointed one out to her while we were out shopping one quiet afternoon last November. A few weeks later I received a large, red dutch oven for Christmas.
I tend to forget about that pot when spring and summer months roll around, but as soon as the cold weather strikes I pull it out of storage. It’s the perfect pot for simmering, braising and browning. The very thought of it brings to mind warm food on cool autumn nights. In the past year I’ve made tailgate chili, southwest stew, a series of different soups and last night an absolutely delicious vodka cream sauce.
It’s the one extra, special kitchen item I’d recommend to anyone interested in cooking and it’s the one item I tell every upcoming bride to add to their registry. Dutch ovens vary in price and can be relatively inexpensive or extremely pricey. The one my parent’s purchased was roughly $80 after sales and coupons. That might seem like a lot of money, but a sturdy, high-quality dutch oven could last a lifetime and if you love to cook like I do I can almost guarantee it’ll be a lifetime filled with amazing meals.