I never considered disasters as having the ability to bring the family together. I always looked upon them as the exact opposite, events that destroyed families, tearing them apart. But it was while buying a camp Dutch oven that my mind began to drift back to some amazing camping trips I’d had growing up.
While disasters do have a tendency to destroy lives, ruin infrastructure, and basically create a storm of problems for those caught up in them, there’s also a side to them I’d never really spent too much time thinking about. And that is what happens after the event.
Nothing really comes close to sitting around a campfire, staring into the flames with the silence of the night drifting around you. Listening to the crackling of the flames as the wildlife continues in the shadows is one of the best ways for a family to bond.
The Campfire during the Apocalypse
There’s no denying that any disaster feels like the apocalypse. I start to think about civilization ending after just a few hours enduring the latest blackout. But disasters take on many forms and that’s probably why I see them all as being relatively linked.
While they may not all last quite as long as the apocalypse, they certainly feel like it after a few days. And don’t forget that some disasters go on to continue for weeks or even months. Years maybe.
So, when our way of life ends, either temporarily or permanently, one of the quickest changes to take effect will be food preparation and cooking. After all, we’ll still need to eat, right? Those energy bars and rations will only last for so long. And how long do you really think you could live off those bars anyway?
Hopefully, you will have built yourself up a nice food cache over time; maybe even several. You’ll want a quick, efficient, and easy way to cook all that food. Can’t eat raw rice, you know? Most of the food in your food cache, if you’ve been paying attention, you store with one purpose in mind. Extending its shelf life.
With gas and electricity effectively shut off, the humble campfire will no doubt feature strongly in whatever bug out location you choose. And while the circumstances around it may not feel like a typical camping trip, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t treat it as such.
Gazing into the flames after cooking your food in your trusty camp Dutch oven is a great way to forget the present and just let your mind wander. Open flames have an extremely strong hypnotic power when left to just burn on their own.
The Camp Dutch Oven to Use
The camp Dutch oven will be the new centerpiece of your outdoor kitchen. If you’ve never experienced it then hang on tight, because you’re in for a treat. It’s one of the closest things you can do to get back in touch with your ancestors. Centuries ago, cooking over an open flame was the only way to prepare food. There’s something ancient about the process.
While you may have heard of the name, there are quite a few options to choose from. I want to share some of these with you here so you know what to expect when searching for your own. The things to consider when looking for one is the material it’s made from and Dutch oven sizes you’ll need.
No good buying a 2-quart oven when trying to prepare enough food for a family of 8. But then, it’s also no good choosing a 12-quart oven when needing to transport it by hand over miles of hills.
You’ll also want to pay attention to whether buying an indoor or outdoor model. Both exist, but for the purposes of that good old outdoor campfire, I recommend you buy an outdoor model.
Type #1: Camp Chef Cast Iron Dutch Oven
This 12-Quart outdoor Dutch oven is perfect to sit over your next campfire. It includes an added thermometer notch, lid lifter, and a lid with legs that doubles as a skillet or griddle. It’s a decent size and guaranteed to fulfill your family’s needs.
Type #2: Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Camp Dutch Oven
Slightly smaller is this pre-seasoned 6 Quart design. Whilst not as big, it still packs a decent size and is perfect for both outdoor fires and indoor fireplaces alike. The question comes down to how large or small of a size you need for your family.
Type #3: Lodge Camp Dutch Oven
Whilst one of the smallest around, this 2-quart Dutch oven is perfect for shoving into a bug out bag. You’ll easily carry it with you wherever you go. Still a substantial weight, but this size is perfect for one or 2 people traveling alone.
Type #4: Lodge 5 Quart Cast Iron Dutch Oven
Several popular brand names exist in the Dutch oven club and Lodge is one of my favorites. This 5-Quart option is a good all-rounder, offering a decent size, decent portability, and ruggedness that screams quality.
The 4 Reasons They Will Serve You Well
There may be more than these 4. I just find that these are some of the more popular reasons Dutch ovens are important to consider. I totally understand that a lot of other things will feature on your ever-growing list of things to buy. Also consider these.
Prepping isn’t about a one-stop plan that is ever finished. It’s an ever-evolving journey that changes from time to time. This includes your family’s needs changing. Also as the world changes and as technology changes.
These changes are for the better and I often delve into new and exciting things. A Dutch oven is one thing that delves back into the past. Back to a time when our ancestors roamed the undiscovered world, creating their own lives from nothing.
Reason #1: Cooking Food over Fire
The first and foremost reason to have a camp Dutch oven is to feed your family. It’s no good stocking a heap of food if you have no way to prepare it. Raw rice is not going to be a life-saving dish if served to your family. For that, you’ll need to invest in one of these.
Reason #2: Strong Enough to Survive
Camp Dutch ovens are one of the strongest pots because of their cast-iron structure. The best way to know you have a quality Dutch oven is to feel it. Cast iron is heavy and these Dutch ovens take a complete hammering, surviving some of the harshest punishment imaginable.
Reason #3: Bring Family Together
Aside from cooking the family dinner as they ponder life in a new world, or rebuilding the old one, there’s no better way to bring the family together. Is there anything that draws hungry tummies into a cooking space than the smell of gently simmering stew?
Whilst they gaze into the fires, hypnotized by the soothing flames and enjoying the sweet aromas of dinner simmering away, you’ll enjoy the quality time together. Regardless of the situation around you, there’s no better way to pull everyone together.
Reason #4: Boil Water
Another great purpose for the Dutch oven is when your water supply dwindles. This is where you might find yourself needing to boil water. The handy camp Dutch oven makes a trusty boiling companion. Not only because of its strength, but also because of its sufficient size.