Thursday, March 2, 2017

Cast Iron Dutch Ovens

            Welcome to Cast Iron & Dutch Ovens Friday

     I love using my cast iron pieces so thought I would share recipes either that I have made already in my cast iron and dutch ovens or that I want to and just anything that comes to mind about cast iron and dutch ovens indoors or outdoors on Fridays-if there is an interest.  
      Or I just may share anyways lol

      You are most welcome to link up and share a post too with recipes, and your experiences with cooking-baking with cast iron and dutch oven pieces. 
    Some of you may have done or are still participating in reenactments, or you use cast iron in your home, or camping, or just outdoors. Or you participate in dutch oven cook offs-all welcome to share your knowledge.
    I finally have the right code now after several attempts to set up the linky gadget-You can add your url to your Cast Iron & Dutch Oven post at midnight the Thursday before and will work for 6 days.
   I set up a link in my right hand column that will take you back to this information post-

                             Today's Post

All my life (and I am a senior now) I have been around cast iron in my home. My Mom and her Mom always had different sizes of cast iron skillets and griddles that they used on a daily basis. 
    My Mom used a wood cookstove her entire growing up years at home til she left for college. I didn't know this til just a few years ago when she talked about it when she had dementia before she passed. 
    No wonder she was so good at cooking & baking over an open fire during our camping trips and camp fire girls camp outs. I wish I would have realized that years earlier as there was always so much more I wanted to know as I had always dreamed of having a wood cook stove in my home-or in an outdoor kitchen.  
     That will not come about now as our home here in the Ozarks just does not have a big enough kitchen for that-but I do have my commercial 10 burn wolf stove-lol that is perfect for cast iron.

    I love cast iron and is really my utensil of choice in my own home kitchen. My husband and I have been married now over 30 years now (I don't keep track lol) and during those years we have collected allot of pieces of vintage Griswold and Wagner cast iron-that I love to use.

In last week's Friday post,  I shared my little outdoor kitchen that I put together along with my new 12 quart Lodge dutch oven. 
   So far I have only baked 10 inch pies in there but I plan to do more this year.

  This week I wanted to share a recipe that I had posted years and years ago of an upside down cake baked in a cast iron skillet.  The complete post is here posted in 2009 The original upside down cakes were made in a cast iron pan on top of the wood burning cookstove. I did it this way once in a cast iron skillet on top of my gas stove and worked out well-of course you can change up the fruits. See above link for more history of this dish with older and new recipe versions.

d0dd9a9a.jpg Pineapple upside down cake image by soopersuzie

Earlier recipes of this cake include making it in skillets, probably cast iron, and cooking it on top of the stove, since ovens had not been invented. They were also known as skillet cakes. The Hawaiian Pineapple Company ran an advertisement in several women's magazines for creative and original recipes using pineapple. This gave the cake widespread publicity.
The oldest recipe for a pineapple upside-down cake was printed in a U.S. government document in 1931. It is:
Pineapple upside down skillet Cake
Pineapple mixture
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons pineapple juice
3 slices pineapple
Melt the sugar in a skillet over moderate heat, allow it to brown slightly, and stir constantly. Add the butter and pineapple juice and cook until a fairly thick syrup is formed. Place the sections of pineapple in the syrup and cook a few minutes, or until they are light brown, and turn occasionally. Have ready a well-greased heavy baking pan or dish, place the pineapple on the bottom, and pour the syrup over it. Allow this to cool so it will form a semisolid surface, then pour in the following
Cake batter
1/4 cup butter or other fat
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups sifted soft-wheat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup milk
Cream the fat, add the sugar, well-beaten egg, and
vanilla. Sift the dry ingredients together and add alternately with the milk to the first mixture. Pour this over the pineapple. The batter is rather thick and may need to be smoothed on top with a knife. Bake in a very moderate stove (300-325 degrees F.) for 45 minutes. Loosen the sides of the cake, turn it out carefully, upside down. If the fruit sticks to the pan, lift it out and place it on the cake. Serve with whipped cream or hard sauce.
It's a classical all-American dessert. Food History Professor, Burt Gordon, Ph.D. explained that, research shows1870 would be the time when upside-down cakes came about. The term upside-down cake wasn't used much before the late Nineteenth Century, but that style of baking could date as far back as the middle Ages."

Until 1870 the term cakes was hardly used. Pies and tarts were more common then. Some very early cookbooks printed at the turn of the century have recipes for fruit upside down cakes made with other types of fruits - apples and cherries and the like but no mention of pineapple is made. Dr. Gordon explains that Jim Dole who invented canned pineapples might have applied his product to a recipe that already existed. It was traditionally made with apples, cherries and other seasonal fruit upside down cakes in cast-iron skillets on top of the stove. The use of pineapple (and an oven) was just the newest most novel twist by Mr. Dole, an ode to twentieth century technologies and notions of convenience.


  1. Yum. I'm starving and I haven't had pineapple upside cake for decades.

    My mom had a cast iron skillet...I thought I would be helpful one day and I scoured it down to metal. Can you imagine what happened when she went to use it the next time? Lol

    Thanks for sharing.


  2. I love my cast iron cookware but find it harder to use with my bad hands :( the weight is just more than I can handle some days. Plus the Hubby went and bought one of those glass top stoves which will be delivered next week ... he thought he was doing something good as the old stove is giving up the ghost. Guess I'll be giving up the beloved cast iron :(

  3. Amen, Carol. I had a cast iron skillet once. Truly, I don't know what happened to it. The only thing I remember about it is how heavy it was and that it had rust. I must not have cleaned it properly or used it often. Your recipe sounds delicious, Kathy, but you know me, it's cooking. Think I'll go make some paper!

  4. That cake sounds delicious Kathy! I'm going to save the recipe in case I get around to making it this summer. Thanks for sharing!

  5. First: I love the new blog

    Second: I WANT THAT CAKE

  6. I'm sharing this series with my husband as he is the cook and the family and loves his cast iron pan.

  7. My momma cooked on a wood stove. I also loved her pineapple upside down cakes she made in the cast iron skillet. YUM! I have one skillet...stupidly gave the other to the thrift store...and a dutch oven I have only used once. Lovely week to you...<3

  8. I remember the first time I realized I had arthritis (a birth defect, as I later learned) was when I picked up my cast iron skillet and dropped it. I could no longer hold anything that heavy. I wish I could go back to using cast iron, but I had to give all my cast iron away. You made a wonderful cake and I applaud your skills more than you will ever know.


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