Wednesday, 21 May 2008

Taking the Cauldon for a Test-Drive

We spent the weekend at a 'black powder rendez-vous' (roughly 1750 - 1830) at a small county museum.
I had a chance to use the new footed kettle. And discovered quite by chance, that the lid of one of my other cast irion pots fits just perfectly! We still have to do some clean up on the pot before it gets heavy-duty cooking use, but it certainly worked beautifully to keep a welcome pot of hot water to hand. (Weather was not quite what I look for in spring camping!)

And yes, I cooked with some of the wild leeks. Yum.

Monday, 5 May 2008


The first wild leeks of the season! I may have to stop talking about pots and talk about food instead...

Sunday, 4 May 2008

Pottery Pipkins

Ah... the Jamestowne pipkin. No, I don't know if they assume a wooden extension was inserted into that pottery handle. Certainly it would be possible, and that's the way our potter friend has designed his versions. That *is* a handle though, not a pouring spout. I didn't think to set up a shot to make that clear, but the last picture is taken looking directly at the inside where the handle is. In fact, if you really peer, you can see a slight circular mark, which is either discolouration that's occurred during use, or possibly a slight depression and shadow from actually working the clay in that spot.
Turns out I don't have any of the similarly handled cookware that David made. I'd thought I had, perhaps because there'd been such a lot of cookware all being tested at once, and then different shapes went home with different testers.

I have taken some pictures of the two pottery pipkins that I have. Obviously the smaller one has seen more use, as you can see by the smoke marks! I wondered why, until I remembered that my favourite cookpot in this series is an unfooted one. And that may be my favourite because the one firepit I use a lot actually has some flat rocks set around the bottom, and it's probably easier nestling a round bottomed cookpot in there, than getting good seating for a taller footed pot. I do find that the shape curving in towards the mouth of the pot is preferable. It contains the heat and the food better, as well as keeping ash out. I'm hoping to make up some simple wood lids this season, and that will help as well.

But with the hope of spring, there's also the chance of starting to cook outdoors again. So maybe some of these can get a bit more use and experimentation.