Campfire Cooking: It’s Time To Eat
No camping trip is complete without the food. I don’t know why, but there is something magical about ANYTHING prepared over a campfire. My family has our certain go-tos like red beans and rice with conecuh sausage, s’mores (of course), and a nice rustic breakfast of bacon and eggs. Some people choose to keep the meals as simple as possible. Others use this as an opportunity to really test out their campfire cooking skills. The type of camping you do also influences what you bring and cook with you.
For the most part, my family tent/car camps where we have easy access to coolers, cooking equipment, a burner (always need a plan b in case something happens with your firewood), and seasonings. This is not always necessary or the best for you and your family. We are foodies so the meals we share around the campfire are a big deal to us. You and your family might value time spent adventuring a little bit more.
Regardless of your camping style and experience, these #quarantinedayz are a great opportunity to brush up on your campfire cooking chops or try out some new recipes without the risk of having nothing to eat (if something went wrong). Plus, it’s a great way to soak up this great spring weather, get out of the house, and temper the stir crazy that so many of us are feeling. Again, if you want to practice campfire cooking but don’t have the gear, reach out to a TRUSTED neighbor to see if borrowing (and properly sanitizing) during the quarantine period is an option. This is also a great way to test out gear to see what best suits the needs of you and your family. If you have a fire pit or can safely build a fire with rocks in the backyard, this will work best. If this isn’t an option, a stovetop burner or grill will serve as a nice substitute.
- S’mores —This is an all time classic and surely to be a hit with any and all children. You can opt for the classic Jumbo Marshmallow, Hershey’s Chocolate, Graham Crackers or branch out and try some more adventurous toppings. Have a contest to see who can roast the perfect Mallow. The possibilities are endless!
- The Ultimate Hot Dog Challenge — Everyone likes their hotdogs topped in different ways. I am a classic-yellow-mustard-with-a-nice-char kinda person. My dad and brothers prefer chili and Barber’s French Onion Dip on their dogs. With the kitchen within arm’s reach, now is the best time to see who can out-hotdog each other!
- Travel Pouches — This is a great and easy way to set it and forget it while camping AND you can prep the potatoes and vegetables before you go camping. Pick a protein, a starch, and some of your favorite veggies, add a bit o butter, salt, pepper, garlic, and wrap it up tight in aluminium foil! Then build your fire so it’s nice, hot, and making lots of coals. Nestle your hobo pouches in the coals and let the heat slowly cook to perfection while you and the fam have some fun in the yard! There are SO MANY different ways to make foil camping meals and they all look delicious.
- Popcorn The Old Fashioned Way —Popcorn is a simple, tasty, healthy treat that is always fun to make. All you need is a pot with a lid and some coconut oil, salt, butter, or any other toppings to make a simple snack for the whole family. Pairs well with a beer or whiskey for the adults and some apple juice or lemonade for the kiddos!
- Trail Mix Trial and Error — The great thing about trail mix is that anything from the pantry can be added for a tasty treat. Personalize it your way by having the family choose their ingredients and make their own! Everybody gets a mix that is exactly how they want it, leaving smiling faces and full bellies! Testing this out now will set you up for great adventures once stay-in-place orders are lifted.
- Hot Chocolate Perfected — Hot cocoa with mini marshmallows or whipped cream will help keep you warm on a chilly night. Chocolate moustaches are encouraged! For the adults, add a little Baileys or whiskey for a pleasant adult beverage.
- Breakfast Burritos — Some people prefer to keep breakfast simple with granola or oatmeal but bacon in a cast iron with some fried eggs are always on my mind. We have nothing but time so why not make a great breakfast sammie with some biscuits, toast, or english muffins. A scramble is also a great way to clean out the fridge.
- Coffee — Campfire coffee just tastes different. I don’t know if it’s the brisk mornings or the residual smoke from campfires past. I prefer a percolator coffee and this is where having a camp stove can save you time and get you caffeinated faster. There are also other methods to campfire coffee like the Aeropress, drip systems, or instant coffee. I don’t discriminate on methods as long as I can get some caffeine flowing through my veins. Even with the coffee pot just inside, this is a great way to try out new techniques.
The best part about backyard camping during #quarantinedayz is the ability to test out new recipes and methods with little consequence. Pinterest is a great way to discover new flavor combos or techniques to try. Sandwiches and wraps for lunch time, meat and cheese plates, or some veggies and hummus will make the day fly by with little prep on your end. Even COVID-19 can’t keep kids out of sprinklers and running wild!