Thursday, August 23, 2012

A few camp recipes

I was just going through some of the unpublished drafts I had on here, and I saw I hadn't posted these recipes from our trip to Pog Lake earlier in the summer. Be warned, I don't measure, especially when I'm camping (I don't generally pack anything to measure with)

Best suited for - all types of camping.  With modifications you could make this in the back country - take dehydrated blueberries and rehydrate them before adding them to mix.  You could leave the fresh berries out of the syrup, or if you are lucky enough to be camping near some wild blueberries, pick your own.

just-add-water pancake mix
1 small container of blueberry baby food
about 1 cup frozen blueberries (throw them in your cooler, they'll thaw by morning and be ready to use)
maple syrup (real works best but table syrup works too)

Like I said, no measurements.  I just dumped enough pancake mix from the bag into a bowl, guessing at how much I needed.  It was probably a bit more than a cup and made about 8 medium sized pancakes.  Put 2 or three heaping spoonfuls of the baby food into the mix, then the frozen blueberries and the juices from them thawing.  Add enough water to make the pancake batter to the consistency you like.  If you've made lots of pancakes in your life, you don't really need to measure.  If you want to be precise, you can calculate how much water you need by checking the instructions on the back of the box.  1 cup of mix makes 6-7 pancakes and requires 3/4 cup of water.  Put the baby food and the juice from the frozen berries into a measuring cup and add water until it reaches 3/4

Heat your frying pan and grease however you choose, I had vegetable oil on hand, though I prefer the taste of pancakes cooked in a buttered or margarine greased pan.  Cook your pancakes the way you normally would.

Meanwhile, pour about 1/3 cup of syrup into a small sauce pan and add the fresh blueberries.  Turn on medium heat and simmer.  Use the back of a spoon to break up the blueberries a bit.  Let them simmer about 5 minutes, then let the mixture cool a bit while you finish cooking the pancakes.

If I'd realize how the colour would come out, I'd have made small, silver dollar pancakes to go with the Smurf theme, but I really thought they'd end up a dark purple.

Best suited for: Car camping

You'll find recipes for similar desserts all over the internet and in pretty much every dutch oven cookbook on the market.  These types of cakes are perfect camp fare - nothing requires refrigeration, they only have 3 ingredients and they are super satisfying...

2 cans apple pie fill
1 box spice cake mix
1 can Sprite, 7-up or Mountain Dew

So easy.  Spray some non-stick spray in your dutch oven, or however you choose to oil your oven.  I lined mine with foil, but it was a nightmare to unglue it, so next time I'll just use vegetable oil.  Dump the pie fill into the bottom and spread it around to cover the entire surface.  Sprinkle the cake mix over top evenly, then pour the lemon-lime soda around.

Bake for about an hour at 350.  I had a 10" dutch oven so I used about 8 coals on bottom and 12-14 on top.  You'll want to add more charcoal briquets at the halfway mark if the first ones are getting too small.  Rotate the dutch oven, and turn the lid a 1/4 turn about every 15-20 minutes to avoid hot/cold spots.  To test for doneness, stick a knife or fork into the cake part.  It shouldn't be gooey like raw cake mix.

Best suited for: Car camping

I'm of the firm belief that if you can do part of a recipe at home to make prep at camp quicker and easier, then you should do that.  For that reason, I made up a big pot of sauce for the lasagna at home, and froze it.  By the time I was ready to use it, the sauce was thawed and I cut about 1/2 an hours worth of work.

For the sauce I sautéed onion, carrot, celery, green pepper, zucchini and mushrooms, along with a bit of garlic and a tbsp of italian seasoning.  I then added 2 cans of spaghetti sauce, as well as half a jar left over from dinner the previous night.

You'll also need
oven ready lasagna noodles
a 500ml carton of cottage cheese
about 3-4 cups of shredded mozzarella. (You can buy pre shredded, or get a small box shredder for at camp)

Dump some of the sauce in the bottom of the dutch oven.  I didn't grease mine at all, but you could.  Make a layer of noodles.  You'll have to get creative and use pieces to cover the area.  Spread a layer of
cottage cheese onto the noodles, then sprinkle a layer of mozzarella.  Repeat the layers at least twice.  I managed a total of four layers but ended up having to break open a can of sauce I'd brought just in case I hadn't made enough.

Bake for about an hour and a half with about 8 briquets on bottom and 12-14 on top.  You'll definitely have to replenish your charcoal half way through.  You can test for doneness by poking the noodles with a fork.  There will be some bubbling around the outside edge.

Best suited for - car camping

6 small dessert shells (or torte shells) they are little sponge cake circles that have a bit of a lip for serving fresh fruit in
1 can pineapple rings
brown sugar

On a sheet of tin foil, scoop about 1 1/2 tbsp brown sugar and top with about a tbsp of butter.  Place a pineapple ring on top, then add the dessert shell, upside down.  Wrap the foil into packet and cook on the BBQ or a grill over a fire for about 12 minutes.

The butter and brown sugar soak into the shell and the pineapple is warm and sticky.  Be careful not to let them burn.

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