Discover The Fun Of Camp Cooking
One of the best parts of camping is cooking and eating camp food. There’s something about camp food that’s just so much more satisfying than normal meals. Maybe it’s that you’ve been having fun all day and roasting hot dogs and wings over the fire is the perfect end. Or maybe it’s that it’s like going back to basics and that ignites a primal sort of satisfaction within everyone. But if you prefer a little convenience, you can cook all the camping essentials with this table top gas cooker.
Whatever it is, camp cooking is one aspect that’s not to be missed out on. However, it can be fairly scary to cook in the outdoors. What do you bring with you? What should you cook? Well, in this guide, we will cover all of the questions and give you the lowdown on how to cook when camping.
What Should You Bring
If you’ve never camped or cooked outside before, your first worry might be about what to bring. After all, you wouldn’t want to get set up and realise that you’re missing a pan! So, let’s cover the basics first. Firstly, you’ll need something to start your fire like matches or lighter fluid. Depending on where and what setup there is, you might also need to bring your own coal and fire starters. Of course, you can always pick branches and twigs up to help in your cooking, but that’s far too complicated for your first try. Next, you would need a pot, a pan, aluminium foil and a portable grate that can be placed over a fire pit. Lastly, remember to bring utensils, such as tongs, spatulas and sporks. If necessary, you can bring plates, bowls and cups too.
What Are The Different Ways To Cook?
There are various ways that you can cook when camping, however, the easiest would be to simply use direct heat. Firstly, if you are cooking simple basics like hot dogs, wings and potatoes, you can simply wrap them in aluminium foil and throw them on top of the coals. This will allow them the most direct heat and they should cook easily. However, you do have to check on them frequently to ensure that they do not burn.
Next, you can place a grate over an open fire to grill and cook your food. This would be pretty much exactly like when you hold barbecues and grill meat over the pit. This method is less prone to burning, however, it does take a longer time. If you want to cook stews, pasta or soups, you’ll just need to place your ingredients in a pot and place the pot over a smouldering fire. This can be pretty intense as you will have to constantly stoke the fire and ensure that the heat distribution is equal.
If all of that sounds a little too hard for you, you can always opt to bring a small stove to use. This will mean that you don’t have to build or maintain your own fire. It will be much more similar to cooking back at home.
What Foods and How To Pack Them
It is always best to label and organise everything together. Dry ingredients, such as bread, trail mix, biscuits and rice should always go together. Wet ingredients, such as soup, sauces, meats and drinks should go together in another cooler. You’d want to keep all your ingredients fresh, therefore, always freeze all your meats beforehand and place them in your cooler when frozen. To further keep these meats fresh, you can freeze cans of soup, bottles of juice and soda up. These can serve as ice packs for the journey. And by the time you’re wanting to drink or use them, they should have mostly defrosted. It’s a win-win situation. Additionally, for even more convenience at the campsite, you could measure any ingredients and place them in a ziplock bag beforehand. This includes even chopping up vegetables and meats for use. This will highly cut down on your meal prep time when at the campsite. For example, if a meal requires 500 grams of pasta, you can measure that out and place it in a bag first. Thereafter, when you need it for a meal, you can simply pull it out for use.
Depending on what you and your family enjoy, you can pack food accordingly to that. If all of you will enjoy burgers, hot dogs and wings, you should get all of that ready. Just remember to freeze the meats beforehand and pack sauces to go. Additionally, you may also want to use pita bread packs for your bun because these types of bread don’t smush together as easily.
When you journey to your campsite, it would be good to pack all your frozen items together. They will help keep each other cold. However, once at the site, it would be best to take your drinks out and put them into a separate cooler. This is because everyone will probably open the cooler often to get drinks. Therefore, by separating them, you will ensure that the food cooler isn’t opened too often and consequently, will melt slower.
Safety When Cooking
Lastly, do remember to be safe when cooking outdoors. This includes being physically safe and protecting yourself from being cut or injured, as well as being food safe and ensuring that you aren’t cooking unhygienically. It would be extremely upsetting to hurt yourself or get food poisoning when camping. Therefore, do remember to wash your hands and utensils before cooking. Also, when you’re cooking, it might be good to cover pans and pots to prevent any insects or dirt from getting into them. Lastly, if you are camping with children, make sure to keep watch on them when cooking. Children are inherently curious and may try to play with fire or other dangerous objects.
When done right, cooking when camping can be a great and memorable experience. This is especially when the main meal is done and marshmallows are broken out. For many, cooking with their families when camping is a great memory. With this guide, we hope that you have a better idea of how to cook when camping.