One of the first things that convinced me that Pure Clay Cooking was a worthy pursuit to dedicate my life was after tasting a soup with lentils cooked in a clay soup pot! So many years later I still remember the taste, it was like nothing I’d tasted before, there was so much more flavor and richness in each grain of lentil. My experience since that 1st time has only increased in appreciation for food cooked in clay…
It’s much easier to make your favorite soups in your clay pots. Here’s are some tips to keep in mind:
- No need to wait for water to boil before adding the main ingredients. Add water, the main or base ingredients and any spices all at the same time and start cooking. For example when cooking a vegetable soup: add your choice of vegetables, any spices or seasoning to the water with the pot on the stove. Start the stove on low, increase to medium in about 5-7 minutes and let it cook.
- Add fast cooking vegetables like peas, cauliflower, broccoli etc, 10 minutes or so after the vegetables that take time to cook like potatoes, carrots, beetroots, are already half cooked in the pot.
- Vegetables, beans, lentils, meats turn out far more flavorful, juicy & delicious when cooked in MEC’s pure clay.
- Soups and stews can be stored away and re-heated in the same pot the next day. All foods cooked in MEC pure clay pots stay warm for at least 5-6 hours. Conventional cookware (metal, ceramic pots keep food warm only for around 1 hour)
- Keep lid closed while cooking. The pot does not require excessive “baby-sitting”–constant stirring or checking, you can occasionally open the lid to stir the ingredients. When lid is closed steam is locked inside and all the water soluble nutrients stay inside too.
- Don’t need to go beyond medium heat setting for any recipe.
When making Curries, Gravies:
when using the pot to cook Indian curries or soups that need to start off with tempering or ‘tadka’, avoid doing it in the pot instead add tempering as the last step by doing it in a separate pan and then adding it to the pot. Use the pot to cook dry dishes only after it’s “fully seasoned”–having cooked wet dishes at least 2-3 times, see under “seasoning” on the Clay Pot Cooking 101 page. When cooking a dry dish, if the recipe calls for starting by heating oil; heat the oil only for a few minutes (just as long as it takes to get it warm or slightly hot), then add the spices and start cooking. No need to wait for the oil to get too hot like you would when using a metal pot or pan (don’t worry we’ve tried it, and the spices get cooked just the same and taste the same or even better). With the noiseless cooking that is a unique attribute to clay pots, you will not experience loud “sizzling”, “popping” noises.
Curried fish is always best cooked in a clay pot. Here is a fantastic clay pot fish curry recipe you can use to cook any kind of fish in your MEC clay pot.
Most recipes cook in about the same time it takes to make them in other metals pots. Lentils and meats sometimes cook faster, and always more thoroughly because of the even far infrared heat.
Have you tasted food cooked in clay? Tell us about your experience…