Cooking on a Darby

Cooking on a Darby

PostBy: Ioldanach On: Wed Nov 23, 2011 10:43 pm

Can anyone make recommendations as to how to cook on a Darby Coalbrookdale stove top? It has two levels of top, the closed top is open gratework and I keep a cast iron kettle full of water on there and it sort of slowly steams off into the room. If I open that grate, though, there's a cooktop surface with several raised ridges.

I'd like to get a large dutch oven and make slow cooked stew, chili, and braises. But the maximum diameter of such a pot would be about 11 to 11 1/2 inches, since that's the depth of the open cooktop area. Can I slow cook with a larger dutch oven on the closed cooktop? Or am I best off limiting myself to the space inside the open cooktop area.

I'd be feeding 10-12 people with these dishes, so I want more than the 5 qt dutch oven that should fit in that open space.
Ioldanach
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Darby Coalbrookdale

Re: Cooking on a Darby

PostBy: VigIIPeaBurner On: Thu Nov 24, 2011 9:46 am

I'd give it a whorl with a big heavy bottom stock pot. I'm not familiar with your stove other than a few pictures. Do you know what the temperature of the lower surface is? What is the measurement between the top and bottom surface if you remove the top grate/grill? For braising, you don't want to boil the begesus out of the contents, just keep it at a controlled stew and with the heavy top, steam and stew simultaneously. Sounds like that would work with your setup. I say this from the point of using my stove for the same purpose. My Vigilant's cast iron top (10" x 19") will hum along at 700*F - way too hot to directly cook on. I have to use a series of trivets to keep the pot/dutch oven above the surface to moderate the cooking process. I've used this method to fry, braise, stew, make soups and cook down tomato sauce and gravy.
VigIIPeaBurner
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Keystoker Koker
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Vermont Casting Vigilant II 2310
Other Heating: #2 Oil Furnace

Re: Cooking on a Darby

PostBy: Ioldanach On: Tue Nov 29, 2011 11:40 am

The temperature of the lower surface is 300-500 degrees depending on how hot I'm firing it, based on the weather. And it has ridges every couple inches that sit up about a quarter inch, so the pot wouldn't be making direct contact with the stove surface, anyways. The upper surface, when flipped down, will keep a cast iron pot of water at 212, and takes about two days to steam off a full gallon of water in the kettle that we keep on it.

I'm thinking if I'm not in a rush I can use the upper grate to cook in cast iron just as I would in a crockpot slow-cooker, for stew and chili.
Ioldanach
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Darby Coalbrookdale