Enameled Cast Iron pot

need a recommendation on a decent enameled cast iron pot.

i would love a le creuset dutch oven but my wallet says no.

is there a comparable that would work? is there anything i should be aware of with cheaper imitations?

thanks.
Original Post
quote:
Originally posted by TallGirl:
need a recommendation on a decent enameled cast iron pot.

i would love a le creuset dutch oven but my wallet says no.

is there a comparable that would work? is there anything i should be aware of with cheaper imitations?

thanks.


I acutally found my le creuset at Marshalls

it was a 7 qt pot for a very reasonable 120$.

I'd say it this way, cast iron is just that, a solid block of iron. Iron costs alot nowadays so if you find something cheaper it'll have less iron in it.

the le creuset has very good heft that gives me comfort in knowing it's got a good amount of iron in it compared to some of the cheaper say, martha stewart brands.

and what are the benefits of cast iron, it's to retain steady heat right? so you'd want more iron when you're using it.

I personally would suck it up/ save and buy a cast iron pot that is heavy/sturdy and from a reputable company. The suckers last FOREVER and you can certainly pass it down.
quote:
Originally posted by TallGirl:
need a recommendation on a decent enameled cast iron pot.

i would love a le creuset dutch oven but my wallet says no.

is there a comparable that would work? is there anything i should be aware of with cheaper imitations?

thanks.


Tramontina 6 or 6 1/2 QT Dutch Oven. $60 at Walmart and tied the Le Creuset in a recent Cook's Illustrated comparison. I've had mine for 5+ years and love it.

PH
quote:
Originally posted by PurpleHaze:
quote:
Originally posted by TallGirl:
need a recommendation on a decent enameled cast iron pot.

i would love a le creuset dutch oven but my wallet says no.

is there a comparable that would work? is there anything i should be aware of with cheaper imitations?

thanks.


Tramontina 6 or 6 1/2 QT Dutch Oven. $60 at Walmart and tied the Le Creuset in a recent Cook's Illustrated comparison. I've had mine for 5+ years and love it.

PH


i've read reviews (because that did look very cheap) that these didn't work as well with electric smooth topped ranges.

so just fyi

but i cook with gas, so perhaps I might give it a shot as i need a smaller one for cooking some tripe! thanks for the tip!
i have a gas stove as well. i may have to start going to Marshall's regularly to see if they have stuff in stock.

i saw one by Lagostina on sale for $60.

i want a decent once because this is one of those things that i don't plan to replace every few years (like a teflon pan). i cook a lot at home and i find that having good tools makes a difference.

thanks for the advice on checking the weight of each pot. i will definitely take that into consideration.
quote:
Originally posted by g-man:
oh, lodge cast iron is a reputable brand and typically cheaper than the imports.

you might wanna give them a shot


This was gonna be my suggestion, though not enameled, it's $65 including shipping from Amazon, and absolutely rocks. This is high quality cast iron.
I bought a couple of Lodge cast iron frying pans -- 12" and 8" -- for under $35 each from Sur La Table. I love them. It's great for getting them really hot and just throwing meat or scallops on them to get a nice sear. I use it at least once a week.
Believe it or not, IKEA cast iron can very very very good. If it's made in Scandinavia then the iron is of very high quality. Made somewhere else, I wouldn't get it but some of their lines are still made from Swedish iron.

Ridge is good but not enamel coated. good for somethings, less so for others.

My recommendation is to save up for an extra bit of time and get the Le Creuset though. It will last you for 3-4 decades.
Costco carries Lodge dutch ovens. Never noticed this before but probably something you can only order online?

$120 for a 6Qt.

Costco also carries Le Cuistot.

looked up the one at IKEA as well but it doesn't say where it's made.

i think i'll spend the weekend checking out marshalls for le creuset and costco for Lodge. it's better to narrow it down to two or three.

thanks for the advice.
quote:
Originally posted by TallGirl:
let me know how it is for you, snipes.

btw, check out this bad review of the lodge enameled cast iron pot. Frown


I haven't read the article yet, but have looked into the enameled versions of Lodge pots in the past. The company is up front in stating the enameled versions are not made in the US like their traditional cookware. Negative reviews pop up on them from time to time. If I ever decided to pony up for an enameled version I'll suck it up and buy LeCreuset from an authorized retailer. I was at a LeCreuset outlet store recently and asked them point blank if the stuff they were selling was made specifically for their stores and the sales associate quietly confirmed that it was. So I don't want a cost conscious version, I'd want the real deal. If someone can comment on if the versions from Marshall's etc. fall into the true factory seconds rather than the outlet versions then I'd consider them as well. I just don't know the answer to that and became very gun shy after the conversation at the outlet.

Good luck on your quest.
quote:
Originally posted by jorgerunfrombulls:
quote:
Originally posted by TallGirl:
let me know how it is for you, snipes.

btw, check out this bad review of the lodge enameled cast iron pot. Frown


Just curious, what's the benefit of the enamel? The normal cast iron has fantastic reviews. Does enamel do something for the pot i'm not aware of??

Thanks


saves you from having to season it.

I use my enamel one for cassoulet.

them beans are hard to get off after a long cook otherwise.
It has to do with adding acid to cast iron pans. An enameled Le Crueset is fine for making things like tomato sauce, whereas a standard cast iron pan is not. The acid from tomatoes, vinegar, wine, etc, is not good in a standard cast iron pan as it will cause a reaction and rust.

I use standard Lodge cast iron pans for searing meat and roasting, whereas I will use Le Creuset for anything I need to braise or develop a sauce in.
quote:
Originally posted by TallGirl:
let me know how it is for you, snipes.

btw, check out this bad review of the lodge enameled cast iron pot. Frown


i wonder if the poster read the instructions on how to cook with it.

Even the Le crousets (enameled) tell you that for dutch ovens you should not exceed 250-300 degrees and that it's meant for long slow extended cooking.

I do have a cast iron frying pan (non enameled) that says you can use it at temps up to 550.
So if you sear meat in a non-enameled cast iron pan, you would deglaze with chicken stock as opposed to red wine.

Limitations like that steer me away regular cast iron.

I'm looking for a Dutch oven to make stews, soups, risotto, tomato sauce, chili, etc .. I love making risotto Smile
I acutally don't know if that's really true about the acidic cooking

I'm pretty sure the enamel is a saving for seasoning so you don't see rust when you scrub it down.

If you have a non enameled cast iron pot, you simply have to go through the trouble of seasoning it

after you season it, the oil protective layer will easily allow for any tomatoes/vinegar you throw at it.
quote:
Originally posted by TallGirl:
So if you sear meat in a non-enameled cast iron pan, you would deglaze with chicken stock as opposed to red wine.

Limitations like that steer me away regular cast iron.

I'm looking for a Dutch oven to make stews, soups, risotto, tomato sauce, chili, etc .. I love making risotto Smile


Straight cast iron was good enough for the chuck wagon and grandmas everywhere for quite some time so it's good enough for me. I'm with g-man on this one, spend the extra couple of hours up front and season the regular cast iron and you will be good to go. A trick that I stole from my grandmother in law is after cleaning ( I use hot water no soap) put it in a still warm oven, or pre-heat it and then turn it off) and it will dry that thing right out w/o having to worry about rust. I have a massive skillet that I can't pick up with one hand and a smaller 12" one and cook all kinds of things in it w/o rust issues. They just require a bit more care, kind of like carbon steel knives.
quote:
Originally posted by g-man:
I acutally don't know if that's really true about the acidic cooking

I'm pretty sure the enamel is a saving for seasoning so you don't see rust when you scrub it down.

If you have a non enameled cast iron pot, you simply have to go through the trouble of seasoning it

after you season it, the oil protective layer will easily allow for any tomatoes/vinegar you throw at it.


Everything by Lodge comes pre-seasoned. I have 2 Lodge pans and a grill-top skillet, and they're true to their claim about being pre-seasoned. Never had any issues. When they get real dirty, i give them a good hard scrubbing, coat them with oil and some salt, and throw it in the oven for half an hour. As good as new!
quote:
Originally posted by futronic:
It has to do with adding acid to cast iron pans. An enameled Le Crueset is fine for making things like tomato sauce, whereas a standard cast iron pan is not. The acid from tomatoes, vinegar, wine, etc, is not good in a standard cast iron pan as it will cause a reaction and rust.

I use standard Lodge cast iron pans for searing meat and roasting, whereas I will use Le Creuset for anything I need to braise or develop a sauce in.


+1

Maybe you can use raw cast iron with tomatoes etc, but I have the choice and I don't. I'f i'm making a long simmer tomatoe based sauce I use the enamel. Sauce is easier to spatual out of the enameled one as well.

For rissotto I use a copper pan with round shoulders. It's much better than cast iron which doesn't have the heat control I want.
quote:
Originally posted by TallGirl:........i want a decent once because this is one of those things that i don't plan to replace every few years (like a teflon pan). i cook a lot at home and i find that having good tools makes a difference.......
Honestly, buy the Le Creuset. They really are a lifetime investment in what I think are the best cookware of this type.
quote:
Originally posted by wine+art:
quote:
Originally posted by Gigond Ass:

Honestly, buy the Le Creuset. They really are a lifetime investment in what I think are the best cookware of this type.


Absolutely.
Now if I could juts pull the trigger on that 15 quart goose pot.....
quote:
Originally posted by Gigond Ass:
quote:
Originally posted by wine+art:
quote:
Originally posted by Gigond Ass:

Honestly, buy the Le Creuset. They really are a lifetime investment in what I think are the best cookware of this type.


Absolutely.
Now if I could juts pull the trigger on that 15 quart goose pot.....


You could cook for an army in that.
I'm a Lodge fan. I bought the enameled at Wally World for something like $40 as it was an open box. I see the recent posts recommending LC, but I just can't see the advantage. Both are enameled cast iron, both are lifetime warranty, but the price delta just doesn't make sense to me. Anyone use BOTH and have a comparison?
quote:
Originally posted by keytohwy:
I'm a Lodge fan. I bought the enameled at Wally World for something like $40 as it was an open box. I see the recent posts recommending LC, but I just can't see the advantage. Both are enameled cast iron, both are lifetime warranty, but the price delta just doesn't make sense to me. Anyone use BOTH and have a comparison?


I would love to hear someone's thoughts on this. My mom bought a Food Network Dutch Oven and I have nothing to compare it to due to no past experience.
Lodge has, I believe, the cheapest name brand enameled Dutch ovens @ $91.95 for a 4.5 quart and $104.95 for a 6 quart. But cast iron is cast iron. You melt it down and pour it into a mold. When it cools, you spray an enamel coating on it. It's not rocket surgery.

I bought my 5 quart enameled dutch oven at Cost Plus World Market for $59.95. They also sell a 6 quart oval enameled dutch oven for 10 bucks more. Colours vary by store. Mine's red, and I really don't give a tinker's damn (pun intended) who made it, or what country they were in at the time. Cost Plus stands behind everything they sell regardless of country of origin. I think that's why they added that cute little phrase WORLD MARKET at the end of their name!
quote:
But cast iron is cast iron. You melt it down and pour it into a mold. When it cools, you spray an enamel coating on it. It's not rocket surgery.


Come on now, how about things like impurities, how much cast iron is used, quality and thickness of the enamel coating, etc. Making this statement on an enthusiast forum is a bit surprising. If your teflon pan had a life time warranty, but you had to replace it every 3 years because the teflon kept flaking off would that be acceptable since it has a life time warranty? No comment on the quality of your cookware, but saying it's all the same doesn't hold water with me.
quote:
Originally posted by snipes:
quote:
But cast iron is cast iron. You melt it down and pour it into a mold. When it cools, you spray an enamel coating on it. It's not rocket surgery.


Come on now, how about things like impurities, how much cast iron is used, quality and thickness of the enamel coating, etc. Making this statement on an enthusiast forum is a bit surprising. If your teflon pan had a life time warranty, but you had to replace it every 3 years because the teflon kept flaking off would that be acceptable since it has a life time warranty? No comment on the quality of your cookware, but saying it's all the same doesn't hold water with me.


I agree, snipes. I wonder how many countries still don't establish and enforce standards for coatings like this, which could allow lead, cadmium, or other toxins to be used still. I'm much happier buying American or French products, even if it means paying a bit of a premium.
quote:
Originally posted by Seaquam:
quote:
Originally posted by snipes:
quote:
But cast iron is cast iron. You melt it down and pour it into a mold. When it cools, you spray an enamel coating on it. It's not rocket surgery.


Come on now, how about things like impurities, how much cast iron is used, quality and thickness of the enamel coating, etc. Making this statement on an enthusiast forum is a bit surprising. If your teflon pan had a life time warranty, but you had to replace it every 3 years because the teflon kept flaking off would that be acceptable since it has a life time warranty? No comment on the quality of your cookware, but saying it's all the same doesn't hold water with me.


I agree, snipes. I wonder how many countries still don't establish and enforce standards for coatings like this, which could allow lead, cadmium, or other toxins to be used still. I'm much happier buying American or French products, even if it means paying a bit of a premium.


+1!

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