Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Camp Cuisine

In my last post, I promised a post on what we ate while we were camping in Wyoming.  First, a little philosophy:  Camping is not the time for just "getting by" with sandwiches and beanie-weenies.  If anything, it should be amped up above the normal everyday.  That said, I don't want to spend all day cooking either (nor do I expect Cristi to).  I'm on vacation, and adventure is sounding her irresistible call.  Therefore, meals should be relatively easy.

A few of the highlights are below, but, first, a little about the camping gear we use:  Typically, we take a traditional propane 2-burner Coleman camp stove and a propane tabletop grill.  Those two will do almost everything you need.  Over the last year or so, we've also branched out into using a backpacking stove (such as a Jetboil, MSR Micro Rocket, or similar) to boil water for coffee or cook up spam or hotdogs for an on-the-go hot picnic lunch.  This time, we also brought the dutch oven (the cast iron type, not the household type).  This is one of my favorite cooking tools because it works just like an oven, and it's almost impossible to burn something in it.

A few of the highlights included:

- Mountain Man (also known as breakfast hash) -- The sausage was browned ahead of time; the hash browns were dehydrated, rehydrated, and heated with sausage and eggs; the eggs were scrambled and dumped in the skillet on the camp stove with the sausage and hash browns. Note that this could have been cooked in the Dutch oven as well, adding cheese if desired. Serve by itself or as breakfast burritos.

- Cinnamon Roll Pancake -- The dry ingredients were mixed together ahead of time with the wet ingredients added on site.  The icing was also mixed on site.

- Stuffed Burgers -- Made up ahead of time, stuffed with cheese and bacon.  We cooked them on the tabletop grill and sauteed onions and mushrooms in a skillet on the two-burner stove to be used as toppings.  We served them with chips.  NOTE:  This was probably our most time-consuming meal to make.  If you don't make them up ahead of time, plan for an extra hour of prep on-site.

- Chili -- The hamburger meat was browned ahead of time so all the ingredients could just be dumped into the Dutch oven and heated.

- Apricot-Ginger Pork Chops -- Marinade ahead of time, then grill. We served them with mashed potatoes cooked on the camp stove.  If this sounds as yummy to you as they did to us, you can get the recipe from Cristi's blog.

- Brownies -- These were made up as a dry mix with the wet ingredients added just prior to cooking.

- Berry Crisp -- The topping was mixed up on site and put on top of the berries in the Dutch oven. Put some cool whip on top, and it's just like Grandma makes!

And, of course, we made s'mores one night because you can't go camping without s'mores!

You can tell we don't go hungry when we're camping.  The meals we fix are easy to cook and clean up and keep our kids begging for more!

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