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I have been using cast iron cookware for several years, but this is my first cookbook devoted solely to it. For this review, I'll avoid talking about the advantages of cast iron since those are well discussed on the product pages for cast iron cookware.
CONTENT - The Lodge Cast Iron Cookbook is paperback, but it has a thick strong cover and binding with a nice matte surface that I think will hold up well in the kitchen after many years. I get my cookbooks pretty dirty, but I think grease should wipe off pretty easily from it. The book is about 80% cast iron recipes, with a lot of short stories from employees and cast iron enthusiasts talking about their love for cast iron or sharing a special memory from cooking with it. There are also a lot of cooking tips scattered throughout that will help ensure your recipes are a success. A few of the stories are mildly interesting, but most I could do without and seem like testimonials that I could just read on the Lodge web site. A lot of things like "I can remember inheriting my grandma Sally's 40-year old cast iron pan and I make her famous peach cobbler in it every year..." But a lot of people who use cast iron develop a somewhat emotional attachment to it, so stories like this can be a nice touch and don't seem to take away from the actual recipes. Most of them are printed in the margins, which is where a lot of cookbooks usually just leave wasted empty space. The book contains a total of 191 recipes plus a dozen or so recipes for sauces, etc. There are 92 color pictures, which I feel is a good ratio to the number of recipes. Maybe a couple dozen of the recipes are reprinted from other cookbooks.Read more ›
I love cast iron cookware in all forms, am a charter member of a Dutch oven cooking club, and a Dutch oven cookoff competitor. At last count, I own seven cast iron camp ovens, three Dutch ovens, a stack of skillets, a square cornbread pan and a two griddles. My antique cast iron includes several Griswold skillets, a deep gumbo pot and a fish cooker.
I believe a camp oven (the style with three legs, and a lid designed for holding coals) is a must-have in any preparedness or survival kit. Further, I contend that simple, tasty recipes that can be cooked outdoors are survival tools.
With that background, I would have to classify the latest slick stock, full-color cookbook from Lodge as cast iron porn. It's like free heroin to an addict, or a "Drinks on the house!" to an alcoholic. As soon as I got a copy, I sat down and read it cover-to-cover.
Lodge, FYI, is the only cast iron cookware manufacturer in the United States. Founded by Joseph Lodge in 1896 in South Pittsburg, TN, the company continues to manufacture a full gamete of cast implements.
Lodge quality is a given. While I own other brands of cast iron, most of my camp ovens are Lodge. I rely on the Lodge even heating, overall quality and consistent cooking times in competitions as well as family reunions.
The cookbook is divided into several useful sections, which include breakfast; soup, stew, gumbo and chili; the main course; desserts, breads and biscuits and caring for cast iron.
The recipes come from all over and the ones I've tried are fantastic. The book is also a good read. If you're like me, you love reading the stories behind the recipes, and the ways they may have originated.Read more ›
I'm surprised to see how little other reviewers like this book. I am often the odd-reviewer out. And I'm still sticking with the review I wrote; I enjoyed the book, we've had great eats from the recipes, and the "chatty" parts made me smile. I recently saw a book that was a serious waste of of a cook's time, and a FalconGuide that maybe interesting to those who are looking for an option outside this book. Here's the rest of the review:
Cast Iron cookery is trendy once again. Perhaps the changes of income and economy remind us that value is often reflected in length of use rather than throw-away products. Cast iron is perhaps the hallmark of this value and Lodge Logic is the rock star of cast iron. Most people know it--if you have any you probably love it! The many applications and ways you can use any piece from Lodge Logic is truly astounding.
The arrival of this cookbook is welcome and exciting. A variety of other cookbooks have come on the market at the same time. Don't despair! As trustworthy as their equipment, the Lodge Logic brand on this book does not disappoint.
My first spin through the book revealed more recipes of interest than I could possible make for one review--I always make at least three but time limits to me to usually no more than five. My first list included well over 20 selections. Other valuable qualities also showed up during the initial handling of the book.
Those of you who read my reviews on a regular basis know how much I dislike cookbooks that are hard to keep open. Novel-style binding is normal in the current market. This book offers a pleasant surprise. The cover is thicker than the usual sleek, thin format. In addition, the binding is pre-creased to make it easier to stay open.Read more ›