It was my fault really, I mean what did I expect when I left a boiling pot of delicious Chicken Tortilla Soup on the stove for my husband to watch?!
It all started when I decided to take a nice, warm bath after an exhausting day of running around at 33 weeks pregnant. I told my husband to please listen for the 15 minute timer I had set and when it goes off to please check to make sure the chicken was cooked through. I needed him to take out the chicken, shred it, add it back to the pot, and turn the heat down.
I set out all the things he would need…meat thermometer, cutting board, and two forks to shred the chicken. I then merrily go jump in the bath tub to soak my problems away. After about 25+ minutes, I get out just as Josh is coming into the bathroom saying “um, the timer never went off!” I knew I set the timer, so I am thinking to myself ‘it’s fine, the chicken will just be well cooked!’
I throw some clothes on, head to the kitchen, and as I am walking down the hall I immediately smell a scorched food smell that is just down right awful!
As I stand in front of my beautiful, grey colored enamel coated cast iron dutch oven (that has only been used a handful of times), I see that there is little to no liquid left in the pan. I grab another pot and start scooping the ‘dry’ soup out of the dutch oven and that’s when I see the sadness that was now my once lovely pot.
It was burnt to a crisp! Tomatoes and corn scorched black and stuck on the bottom like concrete.
I let it cool, toss it into the sink thinking ‘I’ll never get this clean’ and add some soap. After a good nights soak in hot, soapy water, it barely looks like anything has come off the bottom. My mother-in-law even came over later in the day and worked at it till it eventually looked like this.
At this point I decided to look up home remedies to see if I could salvage this expensive dutch oven that I loved so dearly! And surprisingly, I found a solution!
Over at the Kitchn, they have a really easy how to on cleaning burnt food off of enameled cast iron cookware. If you are familiar with this type of cookware, you should know that you cannot use metal or abrasive materials on it as it can damage the coating.
This super easy solution worked very well on my thick coating of burnt on food!
Burnt Food Solution for Enameled Cast Iron Cookware
What You Need
First, start off by filling your burnt pot with water. I used about a quart of water, but feel free to use a little more if you have burnt food up the sides. *Be careful to not use too much as the addition of baking soda could cause it to bubble up over the sides!
Next, bring your pot of water to a boil. Then add your baking soda dropping it in carefully as it will bubble up. Don’t let it scare you!
After the mixture has bubbled for a few minutes, start scraping the bottom of the pot with the wooden spoon. You should start to see little burnt flakes floating up and your water turning dark. You can also feel the difference between the burnt food on the bottom and the true bottom of the pot when scraping. Keep working at it until you feel it is as clean as possible.
For me, it took a little extra baking soda and quite a bit of scraping to achieve my final results!
After I felt the pot was clean enough on the stove, I dumped the water and added more hot water and let it soak in the sink with some soap for a little while longer.
I then dumped the water and scrubbed it with a dull soapy sponge until all the small remaining burnt pieces were gone.
I cannot believe how well the pot came clean with some simple products we all have in our home. The minimal work and elbow grease it cost to get this pot clean was well worth it to save one of my most prized kitchen pieces!
If on the off chance you too find yourself giving your husband a little lee-way in the kitchen and ending up with a burnt food mess, I hope you find this easy solution as your new best friend to combating the most inconvenient of kitchen mishaps! If you want to see the original article, you can click here at the Kitchn!
As always, if you try this out we would love to hear from you and how it turned out!