Le Creuset Enameled Cast-Iron 2-1/4-Quart Buffet Casserole, Red
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- 2-1/4-quart buffet casserole made of enameled cast iron
- Cast-iron loop side handles facilitate convenient transport
- Secure-fitting lid with phenolic knob locks in heat, moisture, and flavor
- Hand washing recommended; oven-safe to 350 degrees F
- Measures approximately 10-4/5 by 13-2/5 by 4-3/5 inches; limited lifetime warranty
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Inspired by traditional French braisers, which employ both wet and dry heat to break down and tenderize tough cuts of meat, this versatile buffet casserole comes in handy for a variety of culinary endeavors. Its gently curved sides, shallow profile, and wide, flat base allow for techniques such as poaching, searing, roasting, and browning. The buffet casserole holds 2-1/4 quarts and measures approximately 10-4/5 by 13-2/5 by 4-3/5 inches.
Made of heavy-duty cast iron, the cookware's colorful, long-lasting exterior enamel resists chipping and cracking, while its durable, nonreactive sand-colored interior enamel offers a smooth surface for cooking and an optimal palette for food presentation. As cast iron is unexcelled for even heat distribution and superior heat retention, and enamel is impervious to acids and odors, the unit browns and cooks food uniformly and gently without hot spots and can be used for marinating, cooking on the stovetop, or finishing in the oven. The casserole comes equipped with two cast-iron loop side handles to facilitate convenient transport, and its secure-fitting lid locks in heat, moisture, and flavor. The lid also comes fitted with a black phenolic knob that's oven-safe to 350 degrees F. Beautiful enough for the table yet durable enough to outlive its lifetime limited warranty, the cookware can be safely used on any stovetop, including induction, and should be hand washed for best results.
Beautiful enough to bring to the table and durable enough to outlive its 101-year warranty against defects, this heavy casserole is perfect for preparing and ceremoniously serving dishes such as baked pasta, steamed mussels, and cherry cobbler. Use it in the oven or on the stovetop. Made of cast iron, with an exterior and interior clad in two coats of Le Creuset's famous bright enamel, this shapely casserole holds 2-1/4 quarts and measures 2-1/2 inches high without the lid. Cast iron is unexcelled for heat distribution and retention, so this casserole cooks foods evenly and gently at low temperatures without hot spots and is suitable for all heat sources. The plastic knob on its heavy, tight-fitting lid is ovenproof to 450 degrees F. Loop handles make this casserole easy to carry, and the casserole is dishwasher-safe. Like all Le Creuset cast-iron products, it is hand cast in a one-of-a-kind sand mold and hand finished at the Le Creuset factory in France. --Fred Brack
Top Customer Reviews
Of course, you can use it as a casserole and it's the perfect size for macaroni and cheese, fruit cobbler, or chicken and dumplings. However, it is also a great saute and fry pan: steaks and chops brown beautifully; it's great for making a quick pasta sauce; it fries chicken like a champ; risotto cooks slowly and evenly; and it's even big enough for a small to medium roast. In fact, I like it so much I got the five quart model for big batches of paella and larger roasts like turkeys and hams.
Not only is this pan a joy to use and look at, it's also easy to care for. It can go in the dishwasher, but really all it needs is a little soak and the caked on food just comes off with a scrubby sponge or dish brush.
Though any cook would appreciate this piece, it is an especially good starter piece for the recent graduate or newlywed and it will last a lifetime.
The large browning surface and shallow profile make this just the thing for dishes that involve browning meat or chicken, and then pouring on a sauce to slowly simmer and concentrate. The heavy lid makes the pot perfect for slow, wet, braising of tough cuts of meat like back ribs - once the dish is done the pan goes right onto the stovetop to deglaze. Jambalaya turns out beautifully: sweat some onions, celery, and peppers over low heat, brown some sausage or smoked meat, and pour in the rice and liquid - the heavy lid does wonders for the rice, and once the dish is done the whole thing can be brought to the table to serve from.
The only drawback to this pot is that you can't carve in it - slicing up a brisket or corned beef would risk trashing the enamel. The weight is also impressive - with the lid this pot is almost 13 pounds, which may be more than some cooks can handle.
We leave this out on the stove as it's rather large. We do a lot of things in it, but recently we made Swiss Steak. I am not a big Swiss Steak fan, but when someone comes home with the wrong meat for the grill (hint; you BRAISE round steak, not grill it) then you deal with it. I hammered flour into the steaks with the cubed side of the meat mallet. Then sauteed the meat in the Le Creuset casserole. I added minced onion, a can of diced tomatoes and let the whole thing simmer on the stove (though I could have finished it in the oven--this goes in the oven at moderate temperatures.) The result was a tender Swiss steak and with judicious stirring from time to time with a spatula to release the meat from the enamel surface, it was an easy cleanup.
Unlike teflon, you do have to stir to avoid catching the food on the bottom. I find that a nylon spatula, shoved under the meat from time to time, releases it well. But I'd advise you never really leave this kind of pot to cook on its own even on the lowest heat unless you have a heat spreader or even heat. Our gas stove seems to create hot spots under the surface, so I keep an eye on it from time to time.
The cleanup is easy--no abrasives or rough pads, please, but a good soaking cleans it up with a mild scrubbing nylon pad. The cream enamel does stain from tomato and caramelized foods, quick cleanup mitigates this, but over time, you will see some darkening. This bothers some people but as long as the surface is intact, we are ok with a bit of staining.
If you do a lot of skillet cooking and like Le Creuset, this piece is wonderful and it can go from stove to tabletop because it is quite pretty.