The Davis County Fair’s 2017 Dutch Oven Cook-Off had some great competitors and delicious food. First place went to B.J. and Liz Redford, who have won this event at least twice during the years that I was served as a judge. Their winning dishes were Pecan-Crusted Pork Tenderloin, Sweet Basil Tomato Pane Bianco (bread) and Harry Potter Butterbeer Cake, all cooked from scratch in Dutch ovens, with charcoal as the only heat source.
Second Place was the Dutch Oven Delights team of David Jones and his daughter Dana Hancock.
John Wabel took third place. His son was going to partner with him, but had to back out, so John managed all his cooking on his own.
Fourth place was Off the Wheaten Path, sisters Lindsay Johnson and Debbie Smith whose recipes were all gluten-free.
Fifth place went to another father-daughter combo of Steve and Samantha Knecht. This was Samantha’s first cook-off.
Rod and Cyndi Boyer, who chaired the contest, made sure that none of the competitors went home empty-handed. They gave out loads of prizes such as Dutch ovens, a camp stove, Dutch oven cookware and accessories, and many other goodies.
The Redfords will go on to compete at the International Dutch Oven Society’s World Championship, Sept. 8-9.
New this year, the World Championship will take place during the Utah State Fair, according to Cyndi Boyer, who is also helping with the event. This is a big change of venue, since for the past 10-15 years, the Championships have been at the International Sportsmen’s Expo. Another big change: instead of teams coming with recipes they’ve practiced over and over, teams will be given a “Mystery Bag” of ingredients and must come up with a recipe on the spot. This is similar to what you see on TV competitions like “Iron Chef.”
Since I’ll be teaching a cooking class Sept. 8, 5 p.m. at the State Fair, I’ll have a chance to stop by the World Championships and see how it goes with the new venue and format.
Here are some of the great-looking, and great-tasting dishes cooked at the Davis County Dutch Oven Cook-Off.