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I was fortunate enough to receive this Le Creuset rectangular oven dish from a company a few years ago as a free gift as part of a promotion they were running. Mine is in the colour that Le Creuset are probably most noted for, bright orange (known as Volcanic), although there are a wide range of options including blue, purple, grey, black, green and red.
Sizing and Pricing
The rectangular dish is available in three sizes. Mine is the smallest of the three, at 19cm in length and currently costs £12.95 from John Lewis. The other two sizes are 26cm and 32cm in length, the 26cm one being £20 and the 32cm one being £29. That is based on the volcanic colour I have - the pricing is also dependent on the colour that is chosen too. The 19cm one has a capacity of 0.6 litres, the 26cm one has 1.3 litres and 32cm one has 3 litres. My 19cm dish has a depth of around 5cm and a width of around 13cm.
Using the Dish
Due to the sizing of my dish, I mainly use mine for cooking chicken fillets or pasta bakes mostly. We don't find that it's quite big enough to serve two hungry people with a pasta bake (unless we're having a side serving with it) so I don't tend to use it for the two of us, although there is a bit too much for just myself in it -the small one I'd say holds around a portion and a half! It's also very handy to make puddings in. Crumbles for example are just nice size in this for two people (as our main meals are bigger than our dessert portions). The dish has handy handles on each of the smaller sides, which are moulded and in the same material as the main part of the dish. They are quite wide so are pretty easy to grab onto with the oven gloves when moving it in and out of the hot oven.
The dish feels incredibly sturdy. It is made of very solid and strong stoneware. They come with a 5 year guarantee which is a great extra assurance that the dishes are good quality. We've had ours around 8 years and it looks as good as new so I never had any reason to use the guarantee - ours has very little signs of even being in the oven, apart from a few tiny burn marks on the very bottom of it, but those are not very noticeable. I usually use mine on 200 degrees in the oven but it's oven safe up to 260 degrees. The bright colouring of the dish hasn't faded whatsoever from the heat - it really still looks as bright orange as it did on the day it arrived. It's also been through the dishwasher lots of times as well as handwashed too. It is completely dishwasher safe and that hasn't affected it's look or use at all either.
It is also freezer safe. The very odd time I've used it for dishes that I've frozen rather than baked and it's always come out perfectly from the freezer and hasn't been affected by being in there for a few days. The dish is also meant to be microwave safe, although that's not something that I've tried.
Although the dish is smooth inside, it hasn't got a non stick coating, although that has never been an issue for me with the dishes I use it for. Pasta dishes, unless baked for far longer than needed, rarely tend to stick anyway so it's not something that I've found to be a problem. It could pose more of a problem with the larger 26cm and 32cm dishes available but with the smaller one I have, I doubt it would cause issues due to the nature of the foods that the smaller one would probably be used for. This dish isn't designed for use over the hob.
I have rated the Le Creuset rectangular dish the full 5 stars. It's a great little dish that's very handy to have in the kitchen. It's one of the most well used items in there, as well as being one of the longest lasting items in the kitchen too. I was going to take one off due to their price, although I haven't done as if I'd have paid £12.95 for mine, given the length of time I've owned it, I think I'd say it was reasonable.
Thanks for reading :o)
I have been accumulating pieces of Le Creuset cookware for years now, since I was an undergraduate with a burgeoning interest in cooking. I believe the only reason why I bought the Le Creuset oven dish, rather than any of the other brand options at the store, is because it was on offer - I think it was only £20? And the heaviness of the pan did appeal. I had no idea of the cult behind the brand!
Now that I am well versed in the pull of Le Creuset, however, I am so thankful for that merry coincidence. I have had this dish for over 5 years now, and have used it to cook so many dishes - roasted potatoes, garlic and Parmesan chunky chips, baked drumsticks, roasted whole chicken, and sweets as well! The great thing about Le Creuset's dishes, as well, is that they're pretty enough to take straight from the oven to the table - it lends your table a really rustic French feel!
My only tip for using it is to throw it into the oven as it heats up - I haven't read to do this anywhere, but I do feel as though because it is such a heavy dish, if it's put into a hot oven unheated, it will actually slow down the cooking process as it will absorb so much of the heat. If it's allowed to heat up as the oven heats up, the oven can also accommodate its insulating capacity.
I'm a big fan of Le Creuset kitchenware. I'm fortunate enough to have a good selection of thier cookware dishes and pots & pans.
With Le Creuset you always get an excellent quality product which feels solid and well made and you can trust to last you for a good many years. This dish is not cast iron, its from thier stoneware range and has a glazed/enamelled finish. Its heavy enough to feel solid but not as heavy as some of their cast iron dishes.
These dishes come in a pretty wide variety of colours, i have the Teal range which used to be exclusive to John Lewis but is now more widely available (which means you're more likely to find it on sale somewhere!).
As with any Le Creuset product this dish isnt cheap! I can't remeber the exact price i paid for this but it was more than £50. What i do think i've got is quality and a dish which looks good when placed on any table in front of guests.
As for its cooking ability it holds the heat well, i'm no real chef so not sure if the dish itself makes a huge difference to the success of the food. What i do care about is that it will last a long time and looks stylish.
Another little bonus is that its far easier to clean than my non-Le Creuset dishes!
I adore products from the Le Creuset range and am lucky enough to own a couple of key pieces. They do tend to be quite expensive for kitchenware but in my experience they are worth every penny and will last many many years if cared for well.
I often buy my Le Creuset pieces from Cheshire Oaks which has a dedicated discount store with end of line and odd bits in it. I most recently picked up a boxed set which included this square dish, a small round casserole and 4 souffle ramekins for £55. The casserole on its own is usually more than that so it was a real bargain, it is also in a gorgeous baby pink colour which looks wonderful in my kitchen so I was absolutely over the moon with it (am I weird for getting so excited about kitchen ware?).
Anyway, I do find that the earthenware ceramic range are incredibly adaptable and I love the fact that they hold heat very well indeed. This means that if you serve to the table in the dish whatever is in it will stay relatively hot for longer (although you do have to be careful not to burn yourself on the dish).
I use this rectangular one for so many things, I make lasagne in it, roast potatoes, brownies and flapjacks, pasta bakes, oven roasted veg and many other things besides. It is safe in the microwave, dishwasher, fridge and freezer and of course in the oven. It is incredibly robust and the surface does not scratch or crack with repeated use, I also find that whatever has been cooked in it and however stained it is, the surface cleans very easily and only ever needs a bit of a soak for stubborn stains to come off.
I do think the Le Creuset range is wonderful quality and pretty good value, you can often also pick pieces up in TK Maxx at bargain prices and Tesco sell some bits too, it neednt be as pricey as you think.
The only downside to the range is the weight of the dishes. The cast iron ones are incredibly heavy but even the earthenware ones like this dish are fairly weighty. This does not bother me but my mom struggles with getting them in and out of the oven as she has weak wrists and finds them too heavy, this is worth bearing in mind if you have the same problem.
Aside from this they are fantastic products and personally I would be lost without this dish in my kitchen as it is one of my most frequently used items!
30cm and 40cm / Kitchenware & cookery products / Perfect for pasta, roasts, desserts or pies / Perfect for serving at the table thanks to excellent heat retention properties.