Going Dutch

View in kitchen, Refuge Plantation, Satilla River, Woodbine, Camden County, Georgia, by L.D. Andrew, from old photograph in possession of B. C. Heyward, courtesy of the Library of Congress.

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Going Dutch

by Rebecca Sharpless
Southern Cultures, Vol. 23, No. 3: Things

“They may be French and they may be fancy, but my pots have hearts of iron after all.”

Last year, I bit the bullet, so to speak, and bought two Le Creuset pots that the upscale neighborhood chain calls “Dutch ovens.” After more than thirty years of use by me and at least that many by my Aunt Exa before that, my WearEver aluminum set had become pitted and just about worn out, deserving of a happy retirement in the utility room cabinet. The new pots are gorgeous—a shade of yellow that back in my youth we called “harvest gold.” Their enamel surfaces gleam under the lights above the stovetop. I christened the first one with coq au vin at my friend Joan Browning’s suggestion and in the ensuing months have used the two pots for everything from chili (with the Wick Fowler seasoning beloved by Texans) to banana pudding for my husband’s eightieth birthday (made to his longstanding preferences: the recipe from the Nabisco Nilla Wafer box, double custard, no meringue).