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Did your le creuset dutch oven survive?

Did your le creuset dutch oven survive?
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  • Did your le creuset dutch oven survive?

    Post #1 - January 7th, 2010, 6:58 pm
    Post #1 - January 7th, 2010, 6:58 pm Post #1 - January 7th, 2010, 6:58 pm
    My parents got us a 7 QT Le Creuset round dutch oven for Christmas. I can't wait to get cooking with it, but I'm curious what everyone else's experiences with it are. What's the worst thing your dutch oven has been through and still survived?
  • Post #2 - January 7th, 2010, 7:38 pm
    Post #2 - January 7th, 2010, 7:38 pm Post #2 - January 7th, 2010, 7:38 pm
    Um... it's cast iron. The only thing I don't expect it to survive is a direct collision with an iceberg in the north Atlantic.

    I guess you could ruin the enamel coating. After a few years of frequent use, mine is... slightly off-color. And I think the knob on top is only rated to 350 or 400F.
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  • Post #3 - January 7th, 2010, 8:17 pm
    Post #3 - January 7th, 2010, 8:17 pm Post #3 - January 7th, 2010, 8:17 pm
    Mike, those knobs can be replaced with ones that can stand high heat.

    One thing to avoid with cast iron is quickly going from hot to cold, or cold to hot.
  • Post #4 - January 7th, 2010, 9:09 pm
    Post #4 - January 7th, 2010, 9:09 pm Post #4 - January 7th, 2010, 9:09 pm
    Don't drop it. Doing so can dent the cookware and chip off the enamel coating. I've never done it (though, I've come close) but a friend dropped a terrine from about 4 feet and pretty much ruined it. :( Other than that, they seem pretty indestructable.

    Supposedly, they don't do well in dishwashers, either, but I've never dared to try it.

    =R=
    There are many things that are legal that are not a great idea --Nick Shabazz

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #5 - January 8th, 2010, 7:39 am
    Post #5 - January 8th, 2010, 7:39 am Post #5 - January 8th, 2010, 7:39 am
    come to grips with the fact that it is going to get discolored.
    i used to milk cows
  • Post #6 - January 8th, 2010, 8:25 am
    Post #6 - January 8th, 2010, 8:25 am Post #6 - January 8th, 2010, 8:25 am
    Once or twice I've failed to protect mine from the ravages of my maid doing the dishes and she's dishwashed mine, it seems no worse off for it.
    Watch Sky Full of Bacon, the Chicago food HD podcast!
    New episode: Soil, Corn, Cows and Cheese
    Watch the Reader's James Beard Award-winning Key Ingredient here.
  • Post #7 - January 8th, 2010, 8:36 am
    Post #7 - January 8th, 2010, 8:36 am Post #7 - January 8th, 2010, 8:36 am
    ronnie_suburban wrote:Don't drop it.

    In addition to Ronnie's "don't drop it" I'd add don't hit it with a hammer, blast it with a shotgun or run over it with your car. Le Creuset are pretty darn difficult to ruin, one of the pieces I have has seen weekly use for 15-years with little or no wear and tear.

    One suggestion, if you have stuck on anything do not use commercial products, in particular metal abrasive scrubbers. I have found a couple of tablespoons of kosher salt and a damp paper towel to be the most effective cleaning method for both Le Creuset and my stainless steel interior cookware.

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #8 - January 8th, 2010, 9:45 am
    Post #8 - January 8th, 2010, 9:45 am Post #8 - January 8th, 2010, 9:45 am
    I'd venture to guess my 7.25 qt Le Creuset has been dishwashed 100+ times. I can see nothing that would lead me to believe that it has mattered. Guess I figure if it eventually does get ruined I would have paid to replace it with the time I saved not hand-washing.

    I just used Bar Keepers friend on it for the first time last week and it seemed to lighten the discoloration that builds up on the bottom.

    I would give up every pan in my collection before even loaning out my Le Creusets :)
  • Post #9 - January 8th, 2010, 10:36 am
    Post #9 - January 8th, 2010, 10:36 am Post #9 - January 8th, 2010, 10:36 am
    It's great to know that these pieces have survived the dishwasher. It make sense, since those conditions don't seem any more extreme than those typically encountered in cooking. Maybe I'll dare to try it next time around.

    =R=
    There are many things that are legal that are not a great idea --Nick Shabazz

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #10 - January 8th, 2010, 10:53 am
    Post #10 - January 8th, 2010, 10:53 am Post #10 - January 8th, 2010, 10:53 am
    I have a piece that got a tiny chip in it. Its still find but does not look as good. Is there a paint you can buy that will withstand heat to touch up any chips? It is on the outside surface, not where you would put food.
    Toria

    "I like this place and willingly could waste my time in it" - As You Like It,
    W. Shakespeare
  • Post #11 - January 8th, 2010, 11:11 am
    Post #11 - January 8th, 2010, 11:11 am Post #11 - January 8th, 2010, 11:11 am
    I'm not recommending the dishwasher method, because any dishwasher is more likely to leave crud on with a bigger, deeper pot like that. But my maid would stick the stove in the dishwasher if she could, so it happens sometimes.
    Watch Sky Full of Bacon, the Chicago food HD podcast!
    New episode: Soil, Corn, Cows and Cheese
    Watch the Reader's James Beard Award-winning Key Ingredient here.
  • Post #12 - January 8th, 2010, 11:22 am
    Post #12 - January 8th, 2010, 11:22 am Post #12 - January 8th, 2010, 11:22 am
    the diswasher will remove the "seasoning" and everything will stick next time around.
    i used to milk cows
  • Post #13 - January 8th, 2010, 11:27 am
    Post #13 - January 8th, 2010, 11:27 am Post #13 - January 8th, 2010, 11:27 am
    Is the enamel supposed to get seasoned? I thought that was just a raw iron thing. I always clean and put away my Lodge pans before she gets here for that reason, but I didn't think there was such a thing with enamel.
    Watch Sky Full of Bacon, the Chicago food HD podcast!
    New episode: Soil, Corn, Cows and Cheese
    Watch the Reader's James Beard Award-winning Key Ingredient here.
  • Post #14 - January 8th, 2010, 11:30 am
    Post #14 - January 8th, 2010, 11:30 am Post #14 - January 8th, 2010, 11:30 am
    Mike G wrote:Is the enamel supposed to get seasoned? I thought that was just a raw iron thing. I always clean and put away my Lodge pans before she gets here for that reason, but I didn't think there was such a thing with enamel.


    well, in my unscientific studies, it makes a big difference. i never use soap on them (well maybe a tiny bit).
    i used to milk cows
  • Post #15 - January 8th, 2010, 11:31 am
    Post #15 - January 8th, 2010, 11:31 am Post #15 - January 8th, 2010, 11:31 am
    Le Creuset Website wrote:Handwash with hot soapy water, rinse with warm water and dry. Products are dishwasher safe, but handwashing is recommended. Constant diswashing may lead to some dulling of the enamel finish. The dulling is not harmful and will not impair performance.
    Dominic Armato
    Dining Critic
    The Arizona Republic and azcentral.com
  • Post #16 - January 8th, 2010, 11:36 am
    Post #16 - January 8th, 2010, 11:36 am Post #16 - January 8th, 2010, 11:36 am
    I routinely use my Le Creuset pieces in my Big Green Eggs but only when cooking over indirect heat and always with plenty of smoke. After 5 or more years they are still pristine. They clean up with warm soapy water. Occasionally I have used Bar Keepers Friend on stubborn stains. I would not suggest frequent use of the dishwasher, as exposure to high temps with aggressive cleaners may result in micro pitting on the enamel surface after some time.

    Some examples:

    Beef short ribs braised in port, 5-qt Buffet Casserole
    Image

    The start of lechon asado, 9.5-qt Oval French Oven
    Image
  • Post #17 - January 8th, 2010, 12:02 pm
    Post #17 - January 8th, 2010, 12:02 pm Post #17 - January 8th, 2010, 12:02 pm
    teatpuller wrote:
    Mike G wrote:Is the enamel supposed to get seasoned? I thought that was just a raw iron thing. I always clean and put away my Lodge pans before she gets here for that reason, but I didn't think there was such a thing with enamel.


    well, in my unscientific studies, it makes a big difference. i never use soap on them (well maybe a tiny bit).


    what kind of difference? the seasoning on a cast iron pan makes it non-stick and rust resistant. what would seasoning do for enamel?
  • Post #18 - January 8th, 2010, 12:17 pm
    Post #18 - January 8th, 2010, 12:17 pm Post #18 - January 8th, 2010, 12:17 pm
    toria wrote:I have a piece that got a tiny chip in it. Its still find but does not look as good. Is there a paint you can buy that will withstand heat to touch up any chips? It is on the outside surface, not where you would put food.


    Neer tried it, but a quick Google search turned up this stuff. http://www.homaxproducts.com/products/kitchenbath/07/index.html
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #19 - January 8th, 2010, 12:21 pm
    Post #19 - January 8th, 2010, 12:21 pm Post #19 - January 8th, 2010, 12:21 pm
    sarcon wrote:
    teatpuller wrote:
    Mike G wrote:Is the enamel supposed to get seasoned? I thought that was just a raw iron thing. I always clean and put away my Lodge pans before she gets here for that reason, but I didn't think there was such a thing with enamel.


    well, in my unscientific studies, it makes a big difference. i never use soap on them (well maybe a tiny bit).


    what kind of difference? the seasoning on a cast iron pan makes it non-stick and rust resistant. what would seasoning do for enamel?


    it's much more non-stick. try it yourself. scrub it with hot soap and water and then try to make crepes.

    enamel is not inherently non-stick, thus the need for teflon.
    i used to milk cows
  • Post #20 - January 8th, 2010, 12:48 pm
    Post #20 - January 8th, 2010, 12:48 pm Post #20 - January 8th, 2010, 12:48 pm
    teatpuller wrote:
    it's much more non-stick. try it yourself. scrub it with hot soap and water and then try to make crepes.

    enamel is not inherently non-stick, thus the need for teflon.


    very interesting. so, you can make crepes in your enameled pan without using any oil or butter?
  • Post #21 - January 8th, 2010, 1:04 pm
    Post #21 - January 8th, 2010, 1:04 pm Post #21 - January 8th, 2010, 1:04 pm
    sarcon wrote:
    teatpuller wrote:
    it's much more non-stick. try it yourself. scrub it with hot soap and water and then try to make crepes.

    enamel is not inherently non-stick, thus the need for teflon.


    very interesting. so, you can make crepes in your enameled pan without using any oil or butter?


    i rub on a little melted butter with a paper towell...give it kind of a shine.
    i used to milk cows
  • Post #22 - January 8th, 2010, 1:16 pm
    Post #22 - January 8th, 2010, 1:16 pm Post #22 - January 8th, 2010, 1:16 pm
    teatpuller wrote:
    sarcon wrote:
    teatpuller wrote:
    it's much more non-stick. try it yourself. scrub it with hot soap and water and then try to make crepes.

    enamel is not inherently non-stick, thus the need for teflon.


    very interesting. so, you can make crepes in your enameled pan without using any oil or butter?


    i rub on a little melted butter with a paper towell...give it kind of a shine.


    cool, thanks for the tip!
  • Post #23 - January 8th, 2010, 1:26 pm
    Post #23 - January 8th, 2010, 1:26 pm Post #23 - January 8th, 2010, 1:26 pm
    The first time I used mine, I figured I'd use it to brown meat (this was long ago). So I put it--empty-- on the gas, set to high, and walked away. 'Hey, it's *iron*, right?' I thought, as if it were plain cast iron or stainless. Popped two bb-sized chips out of the bottom enamel. Which thereafter rusted. :oops:

    Bought a new one, which is now over 25-yrs old and going strong.

    Moral: don't heat it up empty.

    Geo
    Sooo, you like wine and are looking for something good to read? Maybe *this* will do the trick! :)
  • Post #24 - January 8th, 2010, 3:54 pm
    Post #24 - January 8th, 2010, 3:54 pm Post #24 - January 8th, 2010, 3:54 pm
    Geo wrote:The first time I used mine, I figured I'd use it to brown meat (this was long ago). So I put it--empty-- on the gas, set to high, and walked away. 'Hey, it's *iron*, right?' I thought, as if it were plain cast iron or stainless. Popped two bb-sized chips out of the bottom enamel. Which thereafter rusted. :oops:

    Bought a new one, which is now over 25-yrs old and going strong.

    Moral: don't heat it up empty.

    Geo


    I heat mine up empty all the time and have never experienced anything like that. I assume they replaced the faulty one under the lifetime warranty.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #25 - January 8th, 2010, 4:11 pm
    Post #25 - January 8th, 2010, 4:11 pm Post #25 - January 8th, 2010, 4:11 pm
    I have a variety of sizes and colors thanks to the really terrific sales at the outlet store in Kenosha. We've replaced the lid knobs with stainless knobs that are made by le creuset and are pretty reasonably priced.

    The only thing that my oft used and dishwasher cleaned 7.5 quart pot didn't survive was a four inch fall from the bottom shelf of the pot rack. My husband called me at work and said, "Babe, I broke the big le creuset." I said, "Gosh, you are strong if you can break IRON!" It must have hit just the right (or wrong way) on the floor and an entire section cracked right off. I took a picture of our sad pitiful pot and included it with a letter to the le creuset customer relations department. Within about 10 days I received a lovely call from them asking what color 7.5 quart pot I would like them to send to me! For those who are interested, I chose "granite' which was the new color for the year and which I imagined would never be marked down at the outlet.

    Enjoy your new pot. Reconcile yourself to the fact that it will never look new once you use it. I choose to believe mine look "loved" - and they are.
    vickyp
  • Post #26 - January 8th, 2010, 4:45 pm
    Post #26 - January 8th, 2010, 4:45 pm Post #26 - January 8th, 2010, 4:45 pm
    I've had my set of Le Creuset for thirty years and they have seen a lot of dishwasher action. All are fine. They've lost some of their glossy look, but after thirty years, so have I :D

    Jyoti
    Jyoti
    A meal, with bread and wine, shared with friends and family is among the most essential and important of all human rituals.
    Ruhlman
  • Post #27 - January 8th, 2010, 4:52 pm
    Post #27 - January 8th, 2010, 4:52 pm Post #27 - January 8th, 2010, 4:52 pm
    Steve,

    I must admit, I didn't even *think* about the warantee. In fact, until you mentioned it here, I'd never even considered the notion that maybe I hadn't committed a gross error by heating it empty.

    Dang. Hmmmm, maybe it was a faulty pot... :( In which case, I shouldn't have sent it to Goodwill.

    Tnx for the info.

    Geo
    Sooo, you like wine and are looking for something good to read? Maybe *this* will do the trick! :)
  • Post #28 - January 8th, 2010, 11:20 pm
    Post #28 - January 8th, 2010, 11:20 pm Post #28 - January 8th, 2010, 11:20 pm
    Hello LTH!

    I figure I've lurked long enough. 2010 is a year for action!

    So I'm wading in on this innocuous--but critically important--issue. I think probably most cooks would agree that if you could only pick one thing that goes on/in fire for the rest of your life, it'd be an enameled dutch oven. Considering that le Creuset dutch ovens of a decent size are not cheap, and that it would be preferable to pass them on to your progeny, it's important to figure the parameters for use.

    I grew up in a house with food, where the received wisdom was that le Creusets were bulletproof, provided one abstained from using any kind of abrasive pad to try to clean them. If things got really bad, my mom would dissolve dry dishwasher detergent in super hot water and kind of massage the chunks off. I guess she's some kind of pot whisperer, because (of course) when I tried this for myself the first time, I irreparably scratched part of the descoware gratin pan (pre-le creuset) I got from my grandmother. (I know you're probably wondering how something got scorched to a gratin pan; I will tell you now: college roommates!)

    As you can imagine, the scratching-the-heirloom incident made me feel somewhat timid when I finally got my own dutch oven. I had a tough time really going for it with my meat browning until I got this revelatory tip from my mom: Mr. Clean Magic Erasers will effortlessly remove anything stuck to an enamel cooking surface! I have been using this method regularly for over a year, and there has yet to be a mess to which it is unequal. Additionally, I have been unable to discern any pitting or thinning of the enamel as a result.

    Mr. Clean has been such a great help to me--I can now fearlessly prepare to braise--that I thought I'd de-lurk to share, and also to say thanks to LTH for being such a rich, vibrant community.

    best wishes,
    Elizabeth
  • Post #29 - January 9th, 2010, 12:12 am
    Post #29 - January 9th, 2010, 12:12 am Post #29 - January 9th, 2010, 12:12 am
    piratesgold wrote:I figure I've lurked long enough. 2010 is a year for action!

    ~~~~~~~

    Mr. Clean has been such a great help to me--I can now fearlessly prepare to braise--that I thought I'd de-lurk to share, and also to say thanks to LTH for being such a rich, vibrant community.

    Welcome to LTHForum piratesgold and thanks, for the tip. :)

    =R=
    There are many things that are legal that are not a great idea --Nick Shabazz

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #30 - November 30th, 2010, 10:10 am
    Post #30 - November 30th, 2010, 10:10 am Post #30 - November 30th, 2010, 10:10 am
    i've never visited a le creuset outlet store but "hear" there are outlet/factory stores at the aurora outlet mall and in kenosha.
    can anyone tell me a little about how the pricing/selection is?
    any special holiday deals right now?
    thank you so much in advance! :)
    " . . . that makes me the ham!"

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