May 24, 2013 at 11:29 pm #234340
2.5 years ago I moved 2000 miles away from my family to the most beautiful, mostly-wild land I could possibly imagine (Alaska). I’ve been wanting to go camping, but every time I hit a mental block and start stressing out over the preparations and end up not going.
I’ve finally figured out what the problem is – I’ve never had to feed myself when camping. I don’t know what kind of groceries to buy, or how to cook on a campfire, or what foods are relatively easy to cook on a campfire. I know how silly this sounds. It was just never in the distribution of labor. My parents and sisters (who love to cook) did the cooking. I kept the kids occupied and did much of the heavy lifting. Since the chef’s in the family always buy too much, there was never any need for me to even buy groceries.
So, help me out, please. What’s the easiest food to cook on a campfire? (I don’t want a camp stove for my rare camping trips).
May 25, 2013 at 1:06 pm #234343
It sounds like you are car camping and not backpacking so weight and spoilage is not a problem? One recipe that comes to mind, for a dessert anyway, is a banana boat. My Girl Scout makes these when her troop is out camping. Pull back peel lengthwise of one section of a banana (keep rest of the peel intact). Make a trench the length of the banana with a spoon or knife. Stuff with marshmallows and chocolate chips. Return peel to its place covering the banana. Wrap in aluminum foil. Place on a bed of coals for 5 minutes till gooey and melted. Her troop has also done chicken and dumplings in a dutch oven. A short description is to simmer sliced vegetables (celery carrots, onions) and cubed pre-cooked chicken meat in a canned chicken broth (2 or 3 cans) for 30 minutes over a fire. Make a biscuit dough; drop biscuit dough by spoonfuls into simmering broth. Don’t stir; cover and simmer for another 20 minutes until biscuits are cooked through.
May 26, 2013 at 11:17 pm #234349
As an avid camper, I would suggest that you DO bother with a camp stove, if you can borrow one. It is much cleaner and easier than a campfire, unless you want to eat mostly hot dogs and foil pouch meals. If you want to use the fire, please tell us what cookware you have to use and how many folks you are cooking for and if there are children. Will you have a fireplace such as in many state parks that have an iron grate, or will it be on a fire you have no supports over?
If you have a Dutch oven, there are lots of websites with one-pot meals for cooking with them. If you are nervous about cooking, I would suggest some stand-bys as you might make at home, things you can boil and are easy to pack. Spaghetti: cook the pasta in boiling water and serve the sauce from a jar or can. You can heat the sauce in the open jar by standing it in boiling water in a second smaller pot. Less mess. Macaroni and cheese from a box. Cans of vegetable soup, mix in some instant rice for veg and rice. Fried foods such as bacon and eggs, Spam (yes, it’s not bad), stir fry fresh veggies with canned chicken, make hamburgers, Canned fruits are easy, single-serve puddings make a nice treat Pack tortillas and bagels instead of bread to stay fresh and uncrushed. You can always make oatmeal and hot chocolate from instant pouches in individual bowls and cups, thus getting a lot of mileage out of the boiling water, saving some to clean dishes in after. I get inspired in the natural food stores, since they have rice pilaf, quinoa, and rice and bean materials in boxed, pre-seasoned and “instant” forms. You can freeze cooked chicken cubes to throw into anything.
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