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Things to cook in a Le Creuset?

My new husband and I received a 7 and 1/4 quart round, gorgeous (Caribbean blue!) Le Creuset oven for our wedding earlier this month. This weekend we want to use it, but we're not sure where to start.

What are your favorite recipes to make in a dutch oven? Sorry, I'm feeling clueless at the moment, but I know we want to break it in with something fun.

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    1. re: blue room

      blue_room, I never got around to telling you, but the list you provided got my brain into gear, and I realized, "DUH, make Moroccan chicken!" I have a recipe with preserved lemon and olives, and I usually make it in a pan. The Le Creuset worked PERFECTLY, and I honestly think it tasted better than ever. Thanks for the inspiration!

    2. Jadore,

      First of all, CONGRATULATIONS to you and your new husband!

      I would recommend a hearty french daube, or beef stew. That's what a LC is made for.

      There are several great recipes - google french daube.

      One caveat - most need to be started 3 days ahead of time. First night marinate the meat (chuck) in red wine and flavorings (this is where the various recipes differ). Second night, slowly cook the daube in your LC and then let sit overnight in the fridge - this really makes the flavors set in. Third day (day of meal), slowly reheat stew on stovetop (actually great to have no work to do save reheating when the guests arrive).

      And finally, the LC will clean up super easy.

      Good luck....

      JEFF

      2 Replies
      1. re: HB_Jeff

        Thank you so much, Jeff! You're so kind. I did actually break it in with Moroccan chicken, and you're right - it cleaned up like a dream, better than I expected.

        OK, so I'm Googling French Daube, and I don't care if it takes 3 days, it sounds brilliant. I actually found a CH thread on it, and it's pretty much sold me on the whole thing. Seriously, you just gave me a great idea for what to cook in two weeks when my new in-laws and my own parents come for dinner. Thank you!

        1. re: Jadore

          A good French daube is worth every day that it takes. And this pan is the perfect vehicle for making it yourself. Make extra; it freezes well in quick to defrost containers and makes the end of a long day a comfort. May I suggest a Cote du Rhone red wine as an accompaniment and a loaf of crusty french bread?

      2. Congratulations on your marriage and your great new cookware! I don't use mine in the warm weather, but it's hard at work all fall and winter making braises, from pot roast to short ribs and beef burgundy. It's great for making chili, soups and marinara sauce, too.

        In warm weather, you could use it to make a kitchen clambake with lobster, mussels, clams, corn, sausage, etc...

        Great color!

        1 Reply
        1. re: mcf

          Thank you, mcf! I know, I cannot WAIT to break it out the next time I'm craving lamb stew, or my hubby wants to try a new tomato sauce. Nice idea on the clambake though! Actually, now I'm thinking I should whip up some cioppino... mmmm.

        2. Congratulations, indeed! Like mcf I don't use mine much in warm weather but most of the recipes in Molly Stevens' All About Braising are perfect for your Le Creuset, you might want to pick up a copy or get it out of your library. It was a COTM selection and there are lots of threads discussing the various recipes in it, almost every one of which is a winner. The master thread is here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/3301...

          1 Reply
          1. re: GretchenS

            Thanks Gretchen! I'm going to check that out right now, because it sounds like an essential kitchen item. Thanks for the thread link!

          2. Congratulations!

            I cook as much as possible in my 7 1/4 LC, lol. Seriously, even things that don't need to go in, do. Not sure where you are and what the temps might be like there, but soups and stews are great. Pot roast, beef bourguignon, chili, lobster (or other) chowder etc. Enjoy! :)

            1 Reply
            1. re: Chocolatechipkt

              Thank you! lol I know, I want to use it EVERY NIGHT. It cleaned so well on Sunday, I just want to throw anything in it again and again, haha.