Any good kitchen needs to have a Dutch Oven in their pots and pans drawer. We recommend a good cast-iron oven for everything from soup to chili to casseroles or whatever you need it for. We have used cast-iron for most of our cooking lives.
For this tip, I am recommending an enamel coated cast-iron Dutch Oven. For the average cook it is the simplest to use and to keep clean. The nice thing about a Dutch Oven it can go from cook top to oven. Cast-iron produces the most even heat for both cook top and oven cooking. It can also be used for slow cooking in lieu of a crock pot or slow cooker.
Cast-iron, even if coated in enamel should only be washed by hand in soap, water and cloth washcloth; immediately dry with soft cloth. DO NOT put away if still damp. Never put it in a dishwasher – – – I repeat NEVER put cast-iron in a dishwasher. The other cautionary with enamel cast-iron is to avoid banging in a burner, corner or counter top; it can chip the enamel. Also, do not drag it across a burner, stove top or use sharp cornered cooking utensil as it will degrade the enamel and liquid could leak underneath creating rust.
In spite of all the care needed for both coated and non-coated cast-iron, it is a must in a well stocked kitchen. Good quality is expensive; but it is well worth it. As with the one pictured, we found it on sale at 65% off; so look for sales. Before buying make sure you study which brands have the best ratings, there is a huge difference in the cooking quality.