Stress free camp cooking

Going camping is a fantastic way to unplug and spend quality time with your family, right?  So why did I come back from my weekend away “relaxing” feeling more in need of a holiday than when I left?

Back in our old tent camping days, I felt that all I seemed to do was look through boxes of food and utensils trying to find what I needed, repacking those same boxes, setting up the cooker and cooking breakfast, lunch or dinner, or washing up after said meals.  And what’s worse I would send my partner and kids off to the beach, the creek or the park just to get them out of my hair! So where was my family time?

Stress_Free_Camp_Kitchen_Image_1

Don’t get me wrong, I love cooking – especially out camping! But what I didn’t want was to spend my camping trip chained to the kitchen!  Things had to change, to reduce the load I devised some recipes for pre-prepared meals to take along, but the changes didn't stop there.

 

So, what’s changed?  

Well for starters I exchanged the old tent setup for a camper with a great kitchen setup.  The kitchen setup incorporates a 3-burner gas cooktop, sink (with instantaneous gas hot water plumbed through) and a huge pantry.  

So how does this save me time in the kitchen?  Having a pantry where everything I need is easy to hand is a time saver in itself, no longer do I have to spend hours looking through boxes for the tongs or the vegemite!  But I can also leave the pantry all packed, so when heading off on a camping trip all I have to pack are the perishables, oh and don’t forget the drinks! 

Stress_Free_Camp_Kitchen_Image_2

Top Tip – Look for a pantry with no doors or drawers blocking your access.  Nothing is more annoying than having to close a door to access your pantry items, or even worse not being able to open a storage area once your kitchen is set up. Want to learn more? Check out our "What makes a great camp kitchen" video here.

The 3-burner stove has ample space for my pots and pans, all I have to do is pull out the slide and connect the gas, and I'm good to go. And having hot water plumbed through to the kitchen means no longer waiting for the kettle to boil to do the washing up. By the time the kettle’s boiled, the washing up’s done and I can settle down and enjoy my well-deserved cuppa!

 

Planning 

I can hear the groans now, but a little bit of planning at home can mean more time spent relaxing whilst camping!  And after all that’s what we’re going camping for isn’t it?

I try to write a very loose meal plan before I head off - usually just dinners and a few breakfast and lunch ideas.  From this I can easily work out my shopping and packing lists to reduce the terrible over packing I used to do! And of course, make sure you pack lots of snacks – everyone seems so much hungrier when camping.

Don’t forget to factor in a night out or lunch at the local bakery – you don’t have to cook every meal!

 

Pre-Prepare

I like to pre-prepare a few meals at home so I don’t have to spend all my time in the kitchen.  Using a vacuum packer to pack your food can save you time and washing up when you’re out camping as you can just cook or reheat in the bag.  One of my favourite recipes is "Cook-in-the-bag" chicken, sundried tomato and feta with pasta that will have them all coming back for more.

Check out the video and recipe below. 

HubSpot Video

 

Recipe for "Cook-in-the-Bag" chicken, sundried tomato & feta with pasta

Ingredients 

  • 300g chicken breast, diced fairly small
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, crushed
  • 150g sundried tomatoes, coarsely chopped
  • 150g feta, crumbled
  • 200ml cream
  • 2 tablespoons finely grated parmesan cheese
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 2 good handfuls of spinach
  • 500g dried pasta – any type that takes approx. 10 mins to cook

Method

  • Mix sundried tomatoes, fetta, cream and parmesan together and season with salt and pepper.
  • Place uncooked chicken, cream mix and spinach in vacuum pack bag (ensure it is sous vide quality).
  • Using marinade cycle or manual override on your vacuum packer, remove air and seal your bag. (See video above)
  • Either refrigerate or freeze until needed, defrost before using.
  • To serve, bring a pot of salted water to the boil, drop in your pasta and unopened chicken bag, bring back to boil and cook for approx. 10 mins until pasta is cooked.
  • Remove bag from pot, the cream may look a little separated, give the bag a little jiggle and it will all become creamy again.  
  • Drain pasta and add the contents of bag and stir to mix.

Enjoy!

 

Looking for a Hybrid Camper as easy to set up as this recipe?

Modcon RV's hybrid camper range is designed with luxury, comfort, convenience, and durability in mind.  Whether you’re looking for an easy setup or a gourmet kitchen with an enormous pantry, we have everything you need.

eBook Download: Your Guide to a Great Camper Kitchen