Picking the Color of a Dutch Oven Is Impossible

updated May 1, 2019
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(Image credit: Ghazalle Badiozamani)

I’m not very good at making impulse purchases. I’m the person who clogs the aisle at CVS, reading the labels on four brands of calcium chews, before deciding that I need to think about it before dedicating a full 30 days to improving my bone density. When it comes to buying new cookware or kitchen gadgets? Forget it. (I’ll be ready to explore sous-vide cooking roughly a week before the earth crashes into the sun).

Like, right now, I would love to get a new Dutch oven, but I’m completely overwhelmed by the fact that there are 17 color choices — and six sizes — on Le Creuset’s website. For someone who struggles to commit to a paper towel color, this is difficult. As I’ve scrolled through the options debating the merits of each one, I have felt a seemingly endless range of emotions.

Hour One: I’m delighted to discover its new color, Provence, a soft purple that Le Creuset says was “inspired by the sun-drenched lavender fields of southern France.” I imagine myself in a French farmhouse, preparing elaborate meals that I’ve seasoned with herbs from my own immaculate garden. I have striped dish towels that are never stained, I look effortlessly chic while wearing a headband, and my home always smells like bread. I add the Provence-hued Dutch oven to my cart.

Hour Two: I realize that I’m allergic to lavender and, the one time I accidentally used a lavender soap at a hotel, my forehead swelled into angry ridges that made me look like the dopiest Klingon in the universe. I have never been able to pull off a headband. I edit my cart, settling on Marseille, a deep teal that would’ve matched the stripes on my French kitchen linens.

Hour Three: Nothing else in my kitchen is Marseille-slash-teal. My blender and Keurig are both red — a bold shade of red seen on Coke cans, boxes of Honey Smacks cereal, and my own angry complexion, courtesy of eating like an unattended 8-year-old. I edit my cart again, deciding on Cerise.

Hour Four: I realize I don’t know what Cerise is. It’s a word I’ve never said out loud, so I watch a 10-second YouTube video about it. I imagine myself gesturing to my new Dutch oven and saying “Oh this? It’s ser-eez. Ser-eez.” I get into an argument with imaginary me, which ends with Imaginary Me in tears when I remind her about the time she pronounced escargot with a hard t.

Hour Six: I have eaten four bowls of Honey Smacks today. I select the Marine Dutch oven.

Hour Seven: Marine looks just like Mineral Blue. I don’t want either of them. I read a Williams Sonoma review that describes it as a “cute little oven,” but it doesn’t say which color is the cute one.

Hour Eight: I don’t think Mineral Blue looks cute, but I don’t think any of them look cute. I wonder if this is why I don’t have children. I ask Imaginary Me if we’re going to die alone. She shrugs, and reaches for the box of Honey Smacks. It’s empty.


Hour Ten: I have bought two new boxes of Honey Smacks. I don’t need a Dutch oven for Honey Smacks. Dig ‘Em, the frog mascot, is the same deep green as the Palm color. His hat is Mineral Blue. Or is it Marine? I have no idea.

Hour Eleven: Palm is fine. Soleil is fine. Flame is fine. I repeat these short sentences out loud. Imaginary Me is reading from a list of every bad decision we’ve ever made.

Hour Twelve: BLACK. I’m ordering the black one. I unscrew the lid on a bottle of Alive! Brand calcium gummies. “Ser-eez,” I say to myself, shaking a bright pink one into my open palm.

Hour Thirteen: Do I even need a Dutch oven? I click the tiny trash can, removing it from my shopping cart. I really need to think about this.