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Texas Pays Tribute to the Dutch Oven

Melissa Block talks with Gale Merriwether, president of the Lone Star Dutch Oven Society, about a state Senate resolution to make the Dutch oven the "Official State Cooking Implement" of Texas. Read the text of the legislation below:

The 'Dutch Oven' Resolution

WHEREAS, The State of Texas traditionally has recognized a variety of official state symbols as tangible representations of the proud spirit and heritage of our state; and

WHEREAS, The bluebonnet, the pecan tree, the Guadalupe bass, and the lightning whelk are examples of some natural specimens that serve to symbolize the great diversity of the Texas landscape, while the state dish, chili, fittingly represents another aspect of our shared culture as Texans; and

WHEREAS, In keeping with this custom, the designation of the cast iron Dutch oven as the official State Cooking Implement would provide suitable recognition for this sturdy utensil; and

WHEREAS, A welcome and dependable fixture at campfires across the Lone Star State, the Dutch oven was used extensively by Spanish explorers, early settlers, ranchers, and chuckwagon cooks over the course of Texas' history; and

WHEREAS, The Dutch oven has also remained a popular item with a vast number of Texans today, and in January, 1995, the Lone Star Dutch Oven Society was founded to promote its use throughout the state; and

WHEREAS, Ideal for use in moist-cooking methods, such as braising and stewing, the Dutch oven's versatility has made it the food preparation implement of choice of both the Boy Scouts of America and the Girl Scouts of America; and

WHEREAS, Renowned for its portability and durability, the cast iron Dutch oven has been a cooking mainstay of Texans from the time of the pioneers to the current day, and it is indeed appropriate that it receive special legislative recognition for its role in our state's history and culture; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the 79th Legislature of the State of Texas hereby designate the cast iron Dutch oven as the official State Cooking Implement.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

As special correspondent and guest host of NPR's news programs, Melissa Block brings her signature combination of warmth and incisive reporting. Her work over the decades has earned her journalism's highest honors, and has made her one of NPR's most familiar and beloved voices.