I can hardly express what a complete idiot I feel like right now. Not knowing any better, I put my new Lodge enameled cast iron Dutch oven, a Christmas gift to us, on the burner to dry after washing before storing, as I do regular cast iron. Little did I know at the time that you should NEVER do this. Worse, I forgot about it when I got busy dealing with feeding the children dinner, and walked back into the kitchen after the poor Dutch oven had been on top of a roaring burner for eight to 10 minutes. What you see here in the extreme close up of the pot’s surface is the result.
Let me ask ye who have experience cooking with enameled cast iron: have I killed my Dutch oven? The care and cleaning sites — the ones that say never to put enameled cast iron on the burner with nothing in the pot — say when the surface is cracked, the pot is done for, because liquid gets underneath the enamel and onto the iron surface underneath. I ran my fingers over the surface of the cooled enamel, and it feels completely smooth. Does that mean anything?
That’s a hundred-dollar Dutch oven. It’s been a great piece of cookware, too. I’m so sick to the stomach over my carelessness that I can’t even think of eating dinner. Idiot, idiot, idiot. Go ahead, make crackpot jokes. I deserve them. On the other hand, maybe this is Julie’s fault for leaving town with me in charge. Argh!
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About Rod Dreher
Rod Dreher is director of publications at the John Templeton Foundation, a philanthropy that focuses on science, religion, economics and morality. A journalist with over 20 years of experience, Dreher has written for The Dallas Morning News, the New York Post, and other newspapers and journals. He is author of the book "Crunchy Cons." Archives of his previous Beliefnet blog, "Crunchy Con," can be found here. He and his family live in Philadelphia.