Note: Even though this is Book 3 in the series, it stands alone quite well.
This book is about cooking with cast iron pots and pans. It includes some tips about maintaining your cast iron cookwear plus the 30 recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and a few desserts. At the end, the author gives a weblink for free dessert recipes using cast iron cookwear.
First, let me explain that I know almost nothing about cast iron cooking. If I had an older relative who habitually cooked with cast iron, I don’t recall it. No, I know of cast iron cooking from my man. He LOVES his cast iron for camping trips and he has occasionally gotten out the big fry pan at home. I will tell you that he almost always waits a week to clean it after use, which drives me a little nuts. I am not allowed to ‘clean’ it in the sink or in the dishwasher. That is his chore, one he puts off. It is a heavy thing to wield and I have to use both hands to easily move it around. I live on a farm. I lift 50 pond hay bales. So that gives you an idea of how heavy this pan is for it to cause an ache to my wrists whenever I try to manipulate it.
The author starts off with providing basic knowledge on the reasons for using cast iron (even heating, non-stick surface) to the proper maintaining of it (no dishsoap, no metal scrubbie, etc.). She doesn’t beat it into you with repetitious sentences, so the book doesn’t get bogged down in these basics. Then it is off to the recipes!
This is the audioversion of the book, so you might think that listening to recipes read out loud would be silly. However, the vast majority of these recipes were so simple that listening to the book was quite enjoyable. Besides, I am one of those people that finds a recipe to be more of a recommendation than a dictation. So while I can’t repeat any one of the recipes back to you, I can pop into the kitchen and start making some tasty food based on the recipes I heard. Also, if you pick up the written version of the book, this could be a good companion to it. My favorite part of cast iron cooking (should I give it a serious go) would be the ability to start something on the range (like frying sliced potatoes) and then popping the whole thing (food and pot/pan) into the oven for finishing. The strawberry pie recipe is a huge temptation for giving cast iron cooking a go!
Narration: Tiffany Williams did a great job. During the chatty parts of the book, she sounded like your friendly neighbor who popped over for tea and a cookie swap. She read off the recipes in a clear voice, never rushing or sounding bored. She never ‘droned’ on as one might if they were forced to read a phonebook out loud.