SOME HISTORY of the Dutch oven
The origin of the Dutch oven has been the cause of much discussion and debate. It is sufficient to say that Dutch ovens first came to this continent from Europe before the United States of America was a country. Some claim the name comes from Dutch peddlers they imported the ovens from Holland and sold them door to door from their wagons. Paul Revere is reported to have been one of the early manufacturers of Dutch ovens in this country. Lewis and Clark carried Dutch ovens on their cross country trek. The fur trappers, explorers, pioneers and cattle drivers all depended on the Dutch oven to provide a wide range of hardy meals as they blazed their way into the history books. In more recent times, cattle ranchers, river rafters, black powder clubs, back country horsemen, trail guides and boy scouts have enjoyed the fun of preparing food with these ovens, as well as the quality of food that can be produced. In recent years there has been a rapidly growing interest in use of Dutch ovens for camping, picnics and backyard gatherings.
Competitive Cookoffs have developed over the last two decades. They provide opportunities to get together, develop and share recipes, enjoy lots of good food and enjoy doing something well. Many have become very proficient at preparing excellent meals in these apparently primitive devices. One reason Dutch oven cooking is making a strong comeback may be because it clearly an art rather than a science allowing to chiefs time to relax and be creative.