Elizabeth Raffald 1769 The Experienced English House-keeper.-
“I received a comment from Mercy Ingraham regarding my question on “Dutch Ovens” in my Scalloped Potatoes blog.
Raffald’s receipt, says to put them in a “Dutch oven,” now there’s a controversy for you. Did she own a bake kettle from Holland or is this Dutch oven a new-fangled tin thing. HMMM– very interesting side note. There has been a lot of banter about the word “Dutch Oven” and nothing conclusive that I have heard either way. Anyone out there have an idea about this?”
Mercy Ingraham said– “Like the potatoes in the scalloped shells. Very pretty. I have a photo of an old? Dutch Painting that is clearly what I call a tin kitchen or reflector but labeled as a “Dutch Oven” dating to the 1600′s. “——- “ That’s one of the reasons many of us in Pennsylvania call the cast iron pot in which we bake a “Bake Kettle”.”
Gabriel Metsu , born 1629, died 1667, Painted the following picture called THE COOK, undated. It clearly shows a tin oven and the painting is Dutch. Now is this the oven of which Raffald speaks. I’m not sure we have a real answer here. Several American receipt calls for a tin oven. Did they not know it was called a Dutch oven by the mid 1700 in the colonies?
It always seems like one question leads to more questions. I do agree with Mercy, a cast iron pot with lid should be called a bake kettle, not a Dutch Oven. The Tin Oven in the picture is Dutch and may have been called just that in the 1600’s. I think I might still call my tin oven, just that a tin oven.
If God had intended us to follow recipes, He wouldn’t have given us grandmothers.
~ Linda Henley-Smith