CAMP COOKING METHODS
There are a number of different ways we've seen that campers us to cook meals. There is no one way that is best, just what works best for you. If you have camped for very long, you have probably settled into your favorite way, but trying out different ways to cook a meal can offer a whole new set of advantages.
In the years I have been camping, I have primarily cooked over open fires or used used traditional liquid fuel stoves. Each way produced outstanding meals and had distinctive benefits. The actual device in which the food was cooked was either a grille over an open fire or in certain utensils (pots pans, etc.) over the flame of a stove.
GRILLE OVER AN OPEN FIRE
Depending on the wood, the taste of a meal cooked over an open fire is second to none. My favorite wood for cooking is Juniper, which is usually found in desert and some low elevation mountain locations. Camping in the Eastern California Mojave Desert for many years afforded me the opportunity to BBQ some fabulous meals, cooked over juniper. The smell of the juniper, mixed with the aroma of the food, as it cooks, is just one of the best parts of a camping trip.
The flavor that the juniper imparts to the food is sensational, and it has worked for us with steaks, chicken, quail, venison, and other game meat. If you haven't used this method, you owe it to yourself to give it a try.
You might think that carrying an oven on a camping trip would be clumsy, and most of all, very heavy and difficult to stow in your vehicle. Not so!!! Coleman makes an inexpensive, compact, and relatively efficient camp oven that collapses to store easily, in even smallish vehicles. We have used this oven to prepare a huge variety of things, including baked potatoes (as many as 10), Cinnabons, muffins, pastries, breakfast egg McMuffins, appetizers and more. The door contains a thermometer, and with reasonable attention, you can maintain a constant temperature for cooking.
In recent years, I have really come to rely almost entirely on my pressure cooker to prepare meals, mainly dinners, and for several very good reasons:
- The entire meal can be prepared in one pot
- the pressure cooker is not affected by altitude
- since the pot is sealed, more of the nutrients remain in the food
- the pressure used to cook also infuses great flavor to the food
- meals can be fully cooked in a fraction of the time by other methods, (saves fuel)
- meals are served piping hot (especially appreciated when the weather turns cold)
- the pressure cooker takes up no more room that any other pots
This is the pressure cooker I use, and it can feed up to 7-8 people.
Stoves are the traditional and most common method for outdoor cooking. The leader for many years was, and still is, Coleman. While today's Coleman stoves are different than those of years past, they still offer a great option for all of your cooking needs. I was raised with and still have several Coleman Stoves, but I am partial to the older ones as they seem to be made better and are sturdier. Regardless, they are still well made and will serve the outdoor cook for many years. And, one of the nice things about Coleman products is that replacement parts for older stoves are still available.
Some years ago, on a river rafting trip, I was introduced to several products made by the Partner Steel Company, including their stoves, the Wishy Washy and their tables (https://partnersteel.com/cook-partner
.) It didn't take long to see that Partner Steel made superior products, designed to meet the demanding needs of professional river rafting guides as well as campers. I have been using their double burner stove and have nothing but praise for its performance, compact size, rugged construction, and attention to detail.
From the Partner Steel Website: