You Get What You Pay For: Hammer Stahl Cookware

I am excited to share that the DLM Cullinary Center has brought in a line of cookware from Hammer Stahl. Founded in 1874 in Sheboygan, Wisconsin, it is one of the oldest cookware companies in North America. In the 1970’s, they began manufacturing their famous Hammer Stahl American Clad Cookware in Clarksville, Tennessee.

Although there are several high quality cookware companies out there, we feel that this line is a smart way to move forward. In the past, we’ve carried one of their well-known competitors that uses 3-ply, and to our surprise this line is less expensive! Check out their story here and see how they make their pans.

The Hammer Stahl cookware difference is that the 7-ply material is used throughout the cookware, from the bottom and all the way up the sides to the top. Because the Hammer Stahl cookware is made this way, the pan heats more evenly. Other companies use the expensive materials bonded together at the bottom of the cookware, leading to uneven heating.

Hammer Stahl’s 7-ply construction includes a layer of ferritic steel that makes the cookware induction stovetop friendly. This ferritic steel layer throughout the cookware means better quality and stronger cookware. Cheaper “induction ready” cookware only use a magnetic type of stainless steel that is more corrosive.

The handles are hollow so that they stay cool for comfortable handling—that will take some getting used to since we finally got used to always using pot holders no matter what. All of the cookware is hand-finished and hand-polished, by American workers, and include a lifetime warranty. Stop by the DLM Culinary Center and see these beautiful and hard-working pans. We think you’ll love them as much as we do.

Many Moods of Mustards

With Oktoberfest upon us, it is time to get serious about mustard!

Plain and simple – I love mustard. When I was a kid I hated both ketchup and mayonnaise, and believe it or not, all forms of frosting too! One of my favorite after-school snacks was a piece of ham slathered with mustard and rolled around a pickle. Mustard has been a constant condiment that has always had a home with me. Nowadays, there is always a minimum of 3 kinds in my home refrigerator, although on average it runs closer to 5.

Being a native Chicagoan, good ol’ Yellow Mustard is a staple in my fridge—I even keep a spare one in my pantry. There is simply no other that will work on a Chicago style hot dog or a burnt bratwurst at my house. Plus, it’s indispensable for American potato salad along with my mother-in-law’s salad dressing, a family classic.

While in culinary school, I learned how important and versatile Dijon Mustard can be. Way beyond a simple ham and cheese sandwich, there are sauces, marinades, vinaigrettes, and so many more recipes make that jar living in your fridge a powerhouse of creative ideas just waiting for you to open the lid.

Whole Grain Mustard can do things that other mustards can’t – texture being an important and distinctive feature. Whether you are coating a rack of lamb or spreading it on top of a country pâté, it not only adds that acidic brightness of mustard flavor, but also a pop of crunch that is unmistakable. Visibly it helps add interest and it informs the diner that mustard is an integral part of the dish.

Being a traveler has added a bevy of other mustards to my arsenal that are delicious and truly unique. I love the German Extra Hot Mustard for its wicked bite, Provence Mustard for any cheese and charcuterie tray I am whipping up, and Tarragon Mustard for anything with poultry to name a few. Stop by our mustard aisle and broaden your culinary horizons.

Prost!

Turkey Red Wheat – Ohio to Holland

Some stories, the good ones, have a way of taking on a life of their own in the best of ways. This one is as golden as the wild heads of the turkey red wheat that we’ve baked bread from, now for three years, thanks to three unlikely local collaborators who have made it all possible—Danny Jones, Dale Friesen, and Ed Hill.

You see, the story was as rich as honey before, as turkey red wheat is a hard winter wheat that’s predominately grown in the Plains States and naysayers didn’t think it was possible to grow it in Ohio, but thanks to Danny, Dale, and Ed, it flourishes in our corner of the world. We shared the story online and word of our wheat field in Xenia spread to a museum in the Netherlands that sought to spotlight the life of Menno Simons, whose ideals set the foundation of the Mennonite faith. The exhibit curators were drawn to the purity of the strain of turkey red wheat that we grow—it’s never been hybridized—and the family history of Dale, who shares a rich connection to the seeds through his heritage. As Mennonites fled Russia in the late 1800s to the United States, they took with them their prized turkey red wheat seeds to build a new future. Dale’s grandparents were among those Mennonites who settled in the Plains States. Menno de Vries, a curator of the exhibit, is also a farmer. He knew how important turkey red wheat was to the livelihood of the Mennonite people and sought to connect it to the exhibit. The exhibit “Menno Simons Groen” opened at the Groencentrum in Witmarsum, a small village in the Netherlands, in early June. Dale and Ed sent both flour and nearly two bushels of turkey red wheat seeds to De Vries. At the opening of the exhibit, some of the seeds were scattered in ceremonial fashion on bits of earth running down the floor of the museum. They would later sprout and become a part of the exhibit, which remained open through August. “When they sprinkled the seeds, it was a symbolic blessing of the soil by planting the seed that finally had a resting place,” Ed says.

With the remaining seeds, De Vries intends to return them to the soil of Witmarsum to bring these seeds full circle. “This is wheat that left Crimea and went to the Plains States and then later to Ohio. And because of Dale Friesen, it went back home. Home being the birthplace of the man who is responsible for establishing the Mennonite faith,” Ed says. Although these seeds have now been shared with our new friends afar, we’ve kept plenty to grow wheat from and bake bread with here in Dayton, Ohio. Look for Turkey Red Wheat Sourdough at the DLM Bakery now.