Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: San Rafael, CA
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The dutch oven has a lot going for it, including portability if you want to go ashore to cook on a campfire. It seems there is a fad of rediscovery with the Dutch Ovens these days, I grew up with mom and grandma using them all the time and we have one aboard even though we have a propane oven under the two burners stove. There is a TV show that is entirely about dutch oven and campfire cooking, even with the experience growing up, it amazes me what he turns out, from biscuits and desserts to main courses, with three or four of various sizes placed around the fire.
One serious problem I've encountered with trying to use small RV/Boat ovens is their unreliable, uneven temp. Even the brand new one on the RV was off and difficult to get good results, so we didn't bother with them, even though we've baked bread in the oldest, pressurized kerosene stove/oven combo and the RV combo, made pizza aboard, not like we haven't tried. I've reduced the oven to little more than an auxiliary heater on really cold mornings.
One thing that does help is a piece of metal or ceramic tile that help absorb the heat and stabilize the temp. It also helps in deflecting the heat from the lower burner. W/o it, it is almost like cooking over a direct flame, the cookie burn in the middle row, over the flame, not done on the outside edges.
My own feeling is forget the oven, too much space for not enough benefit. But then, we removed the refrigerator for the same reasons, took up too much room, yet was too small to do any meaningful food storage.
Thread wander alert: also consider a pressure cooker aboard.