7 Winter recipes to make healthier in your Dutch oven
Many people like Dutch oven cooking for its ability to cook a variety of recipes low and slow, while retaining flavors and nutrients. In winter we gravitate towards eating soups, stews, and one pot meals that are often heartier.
The question is how to lighten these enough for our health and yet keep them hearty and flavorful as they warm our insides to be the comfort food we yearn for.
Let us start by choosing the right Dutch oven that can enhance flavors without leaching toxins. You heard that right; the problems with cooking in a conventional metal Dutch oven are leaching toxins and destruction of nutrients in the cooking process – even at low heat.
Keep reading to learn more.
The health impact of the Dutch oven you choose
Conventional Dutch ovens are reactive
Cooking in a Dutch oven made from a reactive material like metals or chemically laden ceramics causes toxins to leach and contaminate food during cooking.
These toxins are ingested with food, accumulate in the blood, cells and tissues, and form the foundation for a compromised immune system and serious health problems.
Conventional Dutch ovens are harsh on food
Moreover, these materials radiate harsh heat that breaks nutrients and alter the natural flavor of your wisely chosen ingredients. To avoid this, you must choose a Dutch oven made from an inert material. Can you imagine that the only such known material is natural clay? But only in its purest form – primary clay.
Miriams Earthen Cookware (MEC)
This US-based company decided to bring the goodness of this healthy material back to kitchens and started making cookware from lab tested primary clay without additives.
Today, their handmade pots and pans are used by healthy cooks around the world as their primary cookware. And why not, this is the only 100% non-toxic cooking pot made without chemicals, glazes and enamels, and offers unmatchable health benefits.
Thanks to pure clay – your food cooks without leaching toxins and with gentle far infrared heat. This unique heat keeps even the most delicate nutrients intact and really brings out the natural flavors and aroma of your ingredients.
MEC Dutch oven is quite flexible in general – you can use the same pot for slow cooking, pressure cooking, rice and grains cooking, steaming, sautéing, bread baking and so on.
As you know, Dutch oven and slow cooker are the most popular types of cookware for the level of convenience they offer. Here is how to use MEC Dutch oven as a slow cooker:
Dutch oven as a Slow cooker
Being a multi-cooking pot, MEC pots can seamlessly transition between Dutch oven cooking and slow cooking.
You can start by adding the initial ingredients at low heat, stirring occasionally, adding herbs & spices and letting them roast at low heat like you would do in a Dutch oven. The even distribution of heat and the naturally non stick surface makes the process fairly easy. Once you have added all ingredients, cover lid, raise the heat slightly (medium-low) and let your dish simmer till fully done just like in a slow cooker.
In most cases, the stove can be turned off 15 minutes before the food is fully done: the heat retained inside is sufficient to finish cooking your food to perfection! Keep reading to discover healthy recipes for winter to try in your MEC Dutch oven.
7 recipes to make in your Dutch oven that the Whole family will enjoy during winter
Whether you are looking for comfort foods, a warm bowl of healthy soup, or experiment with various winter dinner ideas, MEC has got you covered. Here are some recipes that you can start with:
- Mac & Cheese: During cold weather one tasty dinner is Mac and cheese, healthier when made from scratch with broccoli, and easy to make using the recipe from MEC’s kitchen.
- A hearty lentil and bean stew with a flavorful gremolata topping: The stew is simmered in MEC pot with onion, garlic, diced tomatoes, and spices, then topped with a mixture of parsley, garlic, and lemon zest before being baked in the oven. It is a vegan and gluten-free recipe that is easy to make and perfect for a comforting dinner.
- A steaming bowl of chicken noodle soup with coconut milk: With warm flavors, this dish is not only comforting but can be a complete meal. Make this noodle soup with shredded chicken, onion, celery, parsley, and carrots, as well as ginger and turmeric. You may add chicken thighs if desired, making sure they are fully cooked through before serving at the dinner table.
- Lemon and Herb Roast chicken with green beans: How about this flavorful dish for dinner tonight? You can serve it with brown rice or mashed potatoes.
- Potato Soup: One of the healthiest winter soups, this creamy soup can be made with many variations. On MEC website, you can find a cozy soup for a healthy weeknight dinner, Potato corn chowder, that you may want to try. This is a great slow cooker soup made easy in MEC.
- Other winter soup recipes: Looking for another comforting soup? Using Miriams slow cooker cum Dutch oven pots, you can make other winter soups like pumpkin soup, butternut squash soup, chicken and dumplings, beef stew using root vegetables, and Brunswick stew using fresh tomatoes for a fresher flavor. Tip: Adding fresh spinach can increase nutritional value and add depth of flavor to any delicious soup.
- White chicken chili: This recipe calls for chicken breasts, sweet corn, sweet potatoes, and white beans with a blend of spices. You can simmer it in MEC pot with some water, diced green onions, garlic and green chilies, and top with cilantro before serving.
What if you don’t want to eat soup? Another winter dinner recipe idea is broccoli stir fry, with chopped cabbage and snow peas, just the right amount of ginger, garlic, roasted red peppers and a dash or two of soy sauce. Add other vegetables of your choice and meat if desired.
You can also bake a crusty bread in MEC’s naturally non-stick pot. It turns out amazing with a crispy crust and a moist, fluffy interior.
Now that you have a great list of healthy recipes for winter, head over to MEC’s online store and order a clay pot set today. They ship worldwide using carbon neutral.
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