Camping is an unusual escapade from our monotonous city life. It’s one wholesome way to unwind and connect with nature.
Of course, no one expects luxury at the campsite. But fixing a square meal with limited equipment and supplies may give you the pricks. Often families just pack some cold sandwiches to the campsite. Yeah, but isn’t it more like a picnic?
If you’ve never cooked a meal at the campsite, you have unfortunately deprived yourself of a real adventure – the adventure that needs careful planning and strategy, and a few life skills. Not exactly like the Man vs. Wild, but something pretty close to it.
Are you afraid to hold the skillet on an open fire? Don’t worry, here’s all you need to know about cooking while camping.
Get ready to fire
Building a campfire is amazing fun. You get to hunt for perfect dried logs in the wild, carry them all the way to your site and get the wood crackling. The campfire will keep you warm and also be your cooking station. You can use an iron grate over the fire to serve the purpose of a cook-top.
But some campsites don’t allow visitors to burn campfires. In that case, you can carry a gas stove. There are a few advantages of using gas grills or stoves at the campsite. The cooking temperature can be controlled and the experience is very much like home cooking. If you already have some experience with grills and outdoor kitchens you can easily get comfortable with campsite-cooking. You also get a larger cook-top area for cooking multiple dishes at the same time.
Rolling out the feast
Once you’ve got the fire warming up your cooking station, you should get down to the real cooking. We strongly recommend not wasting the beautiful fire by toasting a burger or cooking noodles. Your campfire (or camp stove) has great potential for gourmet cooking.
Exploit the fire for making bacon and mexican omelette for breakfast or a potato soup for dinner. With a little preparation done at home, some incredibly delicious recipes can be successfully made at the campsite.
Know thy cookware
When you are cooking on the campfire, you would need the tough and hardy cast-iron skillets and pan.
Iron cookware has some characteristic properties which you should get acquainted with.
The material is thick and durable, ideal for the uncontrolled high temperature from the campfire. But that also means that the skillet will need some preheating before you can pour in the oil and start cooking.
Since the skillet will not lose heat rapidly, you can leave food on it to keep it warm.
Once you are done with the cooking, the washed cookware should be immediately dried, lest rust will spoil the surface.
All right, that’s the basics. You will get more comfortable with handling the cookware as you try different recipes. But be careful and just pay close attention as the food is being cooked. There’s hardly any room for burnt or half-cooked meals at the camp, and there is definitely no such alternative like getting food delivered instead.
Make sure to keep utensils that are used for camping and say no to single-use-plastic utensils (spoon, fork, knives etc.). Let us all be worthy of living on this green planet. Let’s not ruin the mother-earth.
So, we believe, you are now ready to embark on the life-changing experience of cooking at the campsite.
Just some final words and you would be good to go!
- Efficient planning is a must. You can’t afford to leave behind utensils or ingredients.
- If you are camping overnight or for the weekend, make sure you carry extra food.
- You don’t want lurking animals to be a party to the feast. At the campsite, food and leftovers should always be locked-in securely in your vehicle or a chuck box.
- Keep aluminum foil and zip locks for storing and carrying food items.
- Carry all liquid items like egg batter, oil, dressings in squeeze bottles for convenient handling.
- If you are carrying a camp stove, check if it is in working condition before you leave.