Archive for November, 2014

Camp Fire Recipe: Blueberry Cobbler

Tuesday, November 18th, 2014

While I have written about making cobblers using an assortment of fruit topped with a cake mix, this cobbler recipe is different.  It combines the traditional flavors of a cobbler made with a piecrust verses a crumb-like topping.  It also gives you the chance to use up maybe a spare can of biscuits that you brought or, due to its design, create something new for breakfast.   Who would not think that fruit and biscuits would not be healthy? 

On that note, while the recipe does call for what I would call generic blueberries (fresh or frozen); I would like to explain why.  Yes, the recipe is better with fresh berries but……I have a story for you that was told to me by a camping friend that explains why one may want to use frozen berries.

The story goes that her and her husband along with their three year old was camping in an area where blueberries grow wild.  I think you probably know where this is going but they found a nice crop of wild blueberries growing along a path they were walking.  The adults in the group were experienced foragers and understood the concept of sharing.  The three year old, on the other hand, just saw blue balls of sweetness that when consumed ran down your chin like a blue river. 

Well, as the parents filled their buckets tied to their waists with blueberries, the little three year old filled his tummy.  When asked, are you picking the berries?  The three year old said, I know you know what he said and I also know you know how the story ended.  In doing so, I have left the decision to use fresh, foraged or frozen up to you especially if you have a little three year old camping with you.

blueberrycobbler

Blueberry Cobbler

Ingredients

4 cups blueberries

¼ cup sugar

2 Tablespoons flour

Grated lemon peel, optional and to taste

1 can of pop and bake buttermilk biscuits

Cinnamon sugar, optional

Dutch oven or a disposable aluminum pan with foil lid

Steps

  1. Wash blueberries and allow to dry.
  2. Once dry, place blueberries in a large bowl and mix with sugar, flour, and lemon peel (optional).  Mix thoroughly.
  3. Place in Dutch over or aluminum pan and place on rack over the fire.
  4. Cook for 10 minutes.
  5. Stir the blueberries and cook for another 10 minutes.
  6. Pop open the biscuits and place biscuits on top so that they form one layer.
  7. Sprinkle with the biscuits with cinnamon sugar if you would like.
  8. If using a Dutch oven, top with the lid.  If using the disposable aluminum plan, either top with the lid it came with or seal with a piece of aluminum foil.
  9. Cook for an additional 10 minutes.
  10. Remove from the fire and allow to set for 5 to 10 minutes before lifting the lid.

Now serve.

Camp Fire Recipe: When Pizza and Nachos get Married

Tuesday, November 18th, 2014

While I love to take my kids along when I camp, there are times I just want adult time.  During this special time, which does not happen that often,  I like to have some special dishes set aside.  This, when pizza and nachos get married recipe is the cleaned up version, as you can imagine.

When adult camping time occurs, I love to sit down by the fire, make my specially wed nachos, and pop open or pour me a good, stout glass of an alcohol beverage. 

Yes, I know there is nothing in these nachos that are naught for the youngsters but why spoil it.  I will leave this dish as a rite of passage when they can first join us in “adult camping.”

When Pizza and Nachos get Married

Ingredients

Sauce

1/1/2 Tablespoon unsalted butter

½ teaspoon olive oil

3 garlic cloves

½ cup heavy cream

¼ cup milk

1 pinch of each:  salt, black or white pepper, and red pepper flakes

¼ cup of Italian cheese

pizzanachos

Directions

  1. Chop garlic and place in a skillet with the butter and olive oil.
  2. Cook over the fire or camp stove until the butter and oil are melted and the garlic is fragrant.
  3. Slowly add the heavy cream and milk to the mixture along with the spices.
  4. Cook until the mixture begins to thicken and bubbles slightly.
  5. Add cheese and stir until melted.

Now that the sauce is made, the next step in this dish is to assemble it in a cast iron skillet.  First, add a good layer of tortilla chips.  If you do not have any, consider using plain old corn chips.  Next, top your chips with the sauce described above.  Once that is done, add your favorite pizza toppings.  The only rule at this point is to make sure they are cooked.  No raw sausage as an example.  Scratching your head, give this ingredient list a try.  Top your chips with diced onion, green pepper, olives and pepperoni.  Once that is done, top with your favorite grated nacho cheese. 

After you have assembled your love dish between pizza and nachos, seal the top of the skillet with aluminum foil and place over the fire.  Allow the skillet to stay there for only a few minutes.  The goal is to just melt the cheese.

Once that is done, remove the skillet from the heat and allow to cool before removing the foil.  After a few minutes, remove the foil and enjoy.

Campfire Recipe: Foil Pocket Apple Crisp

Tuesday, November 18th, 2014

Nothing beats a homemade dessert along the campfire.  Yes, I know there are roasted marshmallows, which are a camp fire staple.  While they are delicious, I am always looking for something different, something that uses natural and maybe even foraged ingredients.  Before I go on though, please make sure that when you are using forged ingredients that you first have permission and second you know what you are picking.

In this example, I feel it is safe to say that everyone knows what an apple looks like.  For me, this is where the story begins and that is teaching my kids how food is actually grown.

On one of our many adventures in primitive camping, my children and I decided to take a walk about American style.  We had been walking for awhile when we came upon a clearing.  I could tell that at one time this clearing had been a field and in doing so the land has been a farm.  As we walked through this land’s page of history, I looked up and out of nowhere was this tree.  Oh, what a beautiful tree it was.  The leaves sparkled with the dew.  The round balls that would turn out to be apples, shined in the sunlight as if they were covered with wax.

Once my children had seen what they thought was a mirage, they quickly ran up to the tree.  To their surprise, the tree did not just hand over the fruit instead you had to go to the effort to pick it.  As I stated before, make sure you have permission and since I knew the property owner I felt fine to pick the apples.

foilapplecrisp

Since we were on a hike and planned to go back to camp, I did not carry any cooking gear but just happened to have some foil and instant oatmeal mix that I had made.  I know that is so convenient but my kids love to just snack on the oatmeal.

In short, we came together to pick some apples, build a fire and make what ended up a wonderful dessert and/or snack that tied us over until we got back to camp.  Best of all, my children really got to see how; at least, apples grow in the real world.

Below is the campfire recipe that I created for Foil Pocket Apple Crisp.

Foil Pocket Apple Crisp

Ingredients

1/2 cup of oats

6 Tablespoons flour

3 Tablespoons packed brown sugar

¼ cup granulated sugar

¼ teaspoon cinnamon

Nutmeg to taste

3 Tablespoons butter

3 apples

Aluminum foil

Steps

  1. Mix all the dry ingredients together in a bowl and add a dash of nutmeg.
  2. Cut in 2 tablespoons of butter into the dry ingredients.  Mix until the butter is completely cut in and the ingredients are crumbly.
  3. Unroll foil and tear off 2 pieces that are about a foot each.
  4. Take the remaining 1 tablespoon of butter and grease each piece of foil.
  5. Cut apples into slices and place in bowl with dry ingredients.
  6. Toss apples and crumbly topping.  Once mixed to your liking, divide onto the two pieces of foil.
  7. Fold over the foil and seal like you would for any foil pocket meal.
  8. Place foil pocket(s) on a grate and cook for 20 minutes.

Once done, allow to cool for about 2 minutes before opening up the pocket.