Park Interpreter demonstrates Dutch oven meal |

Park Interpreter demonstrates Dutch oven meal

Daniel Wassmund, Mormon Station State Park Interpeter presented a Dutch oven turkey demonstration Saturday.
Sarah Drinkwine |

The aroma of turkey and pumpkin filled the air at the Mormon Station State Park on Saturday as Daniel Wassmund, Park Interpreter, demonstrated how to cook a Thanksgiving dinner with a Dutch oven.

The whole process took about an hour and a half using nothing but coals and store bought ingredients.

“It’s a very quick and easy process and doesn’t take much” said Wassmund. “It just goes to show that anyone can do this any time, anywhere.”

During the demonstration Wassmund brushed the audience up with a brief history of Dutch oven cooking and how the recipe came about.

Wassmund said the recipe dates back to the 1840s when settlers traveled west.

“There wasn’t much recourses or things that they could carry so having a Dutch oven or something similar was how people would cook many of their meals,” said Wassmund.

Wassmund said he started giving demonstrations when he worked with Nevada State Parks to help encourage people to buy cookbooks from the gift shop. Ever since then it has become something he enjoys.

“As soon as I learn something I want to share it,” said Wassmund.

He is in charge of the programs at Mormon Station including Dutch oven demonstrations and history talks.

Those who have attended his demonstrations and lessons have said he is a great presenter and knows his material.

“Danny does a great job,” said Elaine Shively. “It’s really delightful that the State Park puts on this demonstration and others all year long.”

When the meal was complete there were a lot of excitement from the audience. They were amazed with the golden brown of the turkey and the amount of flavor it held. The pumpkin pie was crisp around the crust but soft and moist in the middle and it seemed to melt in your mouth.

It was the first time at the demonstration for Joyce and Jack Richardson and they were amazed at the quickness of the meal prep and how Wassmund presented the demonstration.

“Daniel did an excellent job,” said Joyce. “He has some good turkey techniques.”

For the recipe and more information about Mormon Station visit