Do you want to know which tool we think is the prettiest and most useful kitchen tool we own? If you guessed that beautiful enameled French Dutch oven, Le Creuset, then you are right! Le Creuset is the one kitchen vessel we gravitate towards on a daily basis more often than any other.
We consider this beautiful Dutch oven best suited for making braises, soups, stews, and even homemade bread! We love the fact that it so easily transitions from your stovetop to oven. You will rarely find yourself in a predicament where everything has stuck to the bottom because it allows for even heat distribution. Its coating with enamel is a testament to its durability. This technology allows you to brown very easily, which is so necessary for flavor production when making stews or braising. Every cook likes an appliance that cleans up easy. Your Le Creuset Dutch oven just requires hot soap and water!
Once again, this essential piece of cookware comes with a hefty price tag. Some might complain about the weight of the pot, however we feel it be a sign of its strength and durability. Other consumers happen to prefer brands such as the Staub for its design and lid handle. Of course, there are so many affordable brands out there as well, from Mario Batali to Martha Stewart. Although reviewers say they tend to discolor and chip faster, so be sure to do your research to determine where they are made. Ultimately, our Dutch oven is proudly displayed on our stovetop, getting multiple uses throughout the day, and we wouldn’t think to have it any other way!
Here’s a fabulous dish you can make today using your Dutch Oven:
Beef Short Ribs
“I cook with wine. Sometimes I even add it to the food.” -W.C. Fields
There really is nothing better than a one pot dish that warms your soul. This recipe is not only a great low carb entree, it’s also perfect for entertaining. The slow braising in the oven is key here as it allows the meat to simply fall right off the bone.
Adapted from Ina Garten’s Beef Short Ribs
6 beef short ribs, trimmed of fat
freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup good olive oil
1 leek, cleaned and large-diced white part only
1 1/2 cups chopped onion (2 onions)
4 cups large-diced celery (6 large stalks)
2 carrots, peeled and large-diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 cups of dry red wine
Fresh rosemary sprigs
Fresh thyme sprigs
6 cups beef stock
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place the short ribs on a sheet pan, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and roast for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven. Reduce the oven temperature to 300 degrees.
Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven and add the leek, onion, celery and carrots and cook over medium-low heat for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the garlic and cook for another 2 minutes. Add the tomato paste and wine, bring to a boil and cook over high heat until the liquid is reduced by half, about 10 minutes. Add 1 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon pepper. Tie the rosemary and thyme together with kitchen twine and add to the pot.
Place the roasted ribs on top of the vegetables in the Dutch oven and add the beef stock. Bring to a simmer over high heat. Cover the Dutch oven and bake for 2 hours or until the meat is very tender.
Carefully remove the short ribs from the pot and set aside. Discard the herbs and skim the excess fat. Cook the vegetables and sauce over medium heat for 20 minutes, until reduced. Put the ribs back into the pot and heat through. Serve with the vegetables and sauce.