Well, hold back no longer. There's a simple trick out there that can get your pot clean again after cooking on a wood fire. The trick? Dish soap.
|Putting a thin layer of dish soap on a pot before cooking with wood helps tremendously with clean up|
Why bother you say? It's just going to get dirty again? Well, and that is one way to handle it. You could just pack your blackened pot in a sealed plastic bag so soot doesn't get all over. But I use my pots with multiple fuels (gas, liquid, alcohol, wood, and hexamine). A coating of soot will insulate your pot from the flame, and you'll have to use more fuel to heat things up. So, for me, when I'm done with some wood cooking and want to switch to another fuel, I clean my pot.
How well does it work? Let's have a look.
I'm just going to use an old scrubber type sponge here. You probably could use steel wool on a steel or titanium pot. A word of warning: Whatever you use to clean, you're going to get it very dirty. You'll probably want to throw the scrubber sponge away afterwards so it won't get other things dirty. Either that or you'll have to have a designated scrubber sponge for really dirty clean ups.
So, here's my pot. Pretty black. Just waiting to get all over the inside of my pack, and pretty inefficient since heat is going to have to penetrate that coating before it heats the pot.
|A rather sooty pot that has been used on a wood fire|
|A few scrubs, and bare metal starts to appear|
Let's try to clean the worst spot, the bottom of the pot.
|Quite a marked contrast between the cleaned and the uncleaned sections of the pot|
Now, I'd be a liar if I said that it came off like magic. Nope; it just doesn't work that way. It takes some real elbow grease. And, even when I finished cleaning the pot, there were still some little spots of black in the cracks and such. But try cleaning a pot that's been used for wood fired cooking without first putting some dish soap on it. The soot is not going to come off anywhere near as easily.
So there's your wood cooking clean up tip: Smear a little dish soap on the exterior of your pot before you start cooking. You'll be glad you did come clean up time.
Thanks for joining me on another Adventure In Stoving,