Okay, so I have a ton of recipes and love to cook. They say comfort foods go along way in an emergency situation (and how many times have you said 'store what you eat and eat what you store'?) I'm gonna be going through my recipes, posting some which I would consider survival-related/self-sufficient/just plain good. If I have the reference info, I'll post it - otherwise, I'm just glad I somehow ended up with the information... SEASONING A DUTCH OVEN 1. Wash a new Dutch Oven in hot soapy water to wash off the clear protective coating that the factory applies to keep the cast-iron from rusting. A steel wool scrub pad or a green 3M scrub pad works well to get down to the bare metal and remove any rust. Dry the oven thoroughly. The next step must be done immediately. 2. Rub the Dutch Oven with vegetable oil while it is still warm from washing. Be sure to coat all surfaces inside and out. Wipe off any excess oil using a paper towel. 3. Place the Dutch Oven in a kitchen oven and bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees. Turn off the oven, and allow the Dutch Oven to remain inside until it reaches room temperature. 4. Once seasoned, if your Dutch Oven is properly cared for, it may never need to be seasoned again. However, if the surface is damaged by scrub pads, soapy water, or sticking food, you must go through the whole process of seasoning before using the oven again. CARE After use, gently scrape excess food out without scratching the Dutch Oven surface. Put 2 inches of water in the oven. Cover the oven and heat the water to boiling. Scrape the oven with a plastic scraper. Dump the water and dry the oven with a paper towel. Apply a very light coat of oil while the oven is still warm. Do not use scrub pads to clean the oven. Avoid soap if at all possible. You may need to reseason the oven if you use these items. After cleaning, do not put the lid back on until the oven has cooled completely. This prevents condensation from forming as the oven cools. Think ahead when you use the oven. Use foil or baking pans whenever possible to make cleanup easier. COOKING IN A DUTCH OVEN You can cook anything in a Dutch Oven that you can cook at home in the oven or on the stove top! You really don't need special recipes for the Dutch Oven. All that you need to do is learn some basic procedures and how to control the heat. If done properly, you can place the food in the oven and enjoy yourself while your dinner cooks. CONTROLLING HEAT Use charcoal if you are just starting to cook in the Dutch Oven. If you are the cook, DON'T FORGET TO BUY CHARCOAL. For a hot Dutch Oven, place the number of hot coals underneath equal to the diameter of the oven. Place double that number on top. For a 12 inch oven, 12 underneath and 24 on top. This will give you a hot oven of about 400 degrees. To reduce your oven temperature, reduce the number of coals 1 bottom and 2 top for every 25 degrees. If it is very cold and/or windy you will need to add a few extra coals. Always preheat your oven before you add the food. Your coals should last about an hour. If your cooking time is more than an hour, or if the coals are burning fast because of the wind, you must have extra hot coals ready to keep the oven temperature consistent. SPECIAL TECHNIQUES BAKING - If you are using a baking pan, use an oven rack or some small metal items (washers) under the pan to allow a hot air space between the oven and the pan. TOP BROWNING - If you need to brown something, concentrate the top coals in the center of the lid. STACKING - If you are cooking in more than one oven, you can stack them. If you stack two 12 inch ovens, place 12 coals under the bottom oven, 12 coals on top of the bottom oven, and 24 coals on top of the top oven. You can stack several ovens. Remember that only the top oven gets the double coal amount on top. This technique saves coals. Place the items that you do not need to open during cooking on the bottom. FRYING - You can turn the lid upside down and use it as a griddle for eggs, toasted cheese sandwiches, French toast, etc. Suspend the lid over the coals using rocks, logs, or a lid rack.