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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We are planning our first overnight camping trip for the holiday weekend next weekend. We'll only be camping for about 24 hours, and we'll have a campfire spot on a concrete slab with a metal grate over it.

I've never cooked over a campfire in my life! I can handle the gas grill in our backyard pretty well... please give me some guidance!

We can use charcoal or firewood. Which should we go with? Any firemaking advice for city folk?

What should I cook/prepare? We'll leave Friday morning, so I'll need something for lunch (I'm thinking sandwiches in the cooler) and hopefully we'll be set up in the afternoon with time to prepare a meal. I have some marinated chicken thighs in the freezer, I was thinking of grilling these; lay some foil on the grate and grill them. How long should I cook them since the grate doesn't have a cover likey my grill? What else should I serve?

Am I crazy to make a hot breakfast? I could do eggs or pancakes... will food stay cool enough in a cooler overnight? What should I do for lunch?

What kitchen items do you bring camping?

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Let's see. I would do a marinated salad to serve with the chicken that you made at home to make it easier. Then some bread to go with it.

Food will stay fine in a cooler if there is enough ice.
I might not do a cooked breakfast... I always do, but since it is your first time it might be best to take it easy. Or maybe just do one easy thing like scrambled eggs to go with cereal or something.

Things to take...
saran wrap/foil/zip lock bags
can opener/ cork screw
long handled ladles/ tongs/ spatulas/ wooden spoons
measuring cup one of those plastic ones with a spout, always seems to come in handy
pot holders
extra dish towels
soap
extra sponges
a soft sided bucket for washing dishes
something to dry the dishes
basic plate/bowl cup / spoon / fork
sharp knives
cutting boards ( I cut open milk cartons and use those as disposable cutting boards if I have to do meat)
containers for putting leftover food in

we do most of our cooking in a dutch oven so I can't help you on cooking times.

Grilled bananas with a bit of chocolate melted on top make a nice end to the meal. Add some chopped up nuts (leftover beer snacks)
:

Have fun.
kathryn
 

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What about preparing some soups and stews ahead of time, freezing them in large ziplocks and then thawing and heating them over the fire?

Bring a few loaves of fresh baked bread for sandwiches, toast, bread and butter, etc.

Ziplocks of pre-chopped veggies and potatos are a great idea. Add some meat to it and you can throw them on skewers to cook over the fire. As long as your cooler stays nice and cold with ice, the meat will be good for several days.

Eggs are a great meal for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Egg sandwiches with cheese on toast, a scramble with meat, veggies, potatos and cheese and scrambled egg burritos would all be yummy!

Lots of fresh fruit and veggies for snacking...along with cheese and crackers, peanut butter and maybe some deli meat?

You could also make a nice quiche or strada ahead of time and then just heat it up when you're ready to eat.

Corn on the cob can be cooked in the husks over an open flame, so they would be really easy to bring.

We always pre-marinated some chicken and steak (at home) in large ziplocks-they'd be ready to throw right on the grill for a nice dinner.

Are you only going to be gone one night? If so, that's so easy because you're cooler can keep just about anything cold for that period of time. You actually have quite a few options when you don't have to worry about your food spoiling.

Have fun!
 

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Campfire cooking is so much fun and so yummy!

I would go with wood just because that is what I'm used to. I'm sure that charcoal would burn more evenly for cooking though.

When you make your fire for cooking, make it 30-45min before you want to start cooking, or you will burn your food. Build your fire flat, placing some kindling down and split wood in a cross hatch pattern over the burning kindling.

Once your fire has burned down to nice hot coals you are ready to cook. For chicken you can use some foil , or cook directly on the grill. What I would do though is cut up the chicken and skewer it with veggies for kabobs. It will cook faster and be tasty and fun and no need for a veggie side! For potatos I like to slice russet potatos the long way, sandwich a scoop of onion rings sauteed in butter inbetween, and wrap the whole thing up with foil. Put these right into the coals (near the edge so they don't get too hot). These are a great prepare ahead side. Whatever we don't eat that night I slice up and pop back into the cooler to become hashbrowns for the next mornings breakfast!

Scrambled eggs are easiest for breakfast food, and bacon of course!
: We like to bring tortillas and make breakfast wraps. Easy to eat around the fire.

Have fun!!!
 

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we often crack eggs into a nalgene or some bottle and add veggies, salt and pepper, cheese, whatever else and throw that into the cooler to cook up for breakfast as scrambled eggs or burritos.

we also chop up veggies and meat and wrap that in foil with seasonings and olive oil to put in the fire. it's delicious and so easy to prepare and cook.
 

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DH and I take one skillet and one large pot. we bought them at the camping section in a large store.

we cook everything in these. we had cheeseburger and mac n cheese. yeah not thhe healthiest but whatever. after we ate i heated up water in the used pot. used it to wash the pot then heated up some more to wash thhe other dishes. set to dry on a towel. for breakfast we had eggs in the pan and potatoes and sausage cooking in the pot. then DH made toast on the grate over thhe fire. delicious! i think we need 2 more skillets but we did fine. i would do the chicken in the skillet. but i dont like cooking on tin foil, and i def dont like cooking directly on the grate. except for the toast. jmo.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
These are great ideas! Thanks! Not only for the food, but for the supplies to bring, and fire instructions. I think I'm going to make the marinated ckn thighs (already in freezer) right on the grate, and also skewer some veggies to roast with the chicken. Breakfast can be eggs, bacon, mini bagels, and fruit.

For the corn on the cob in the husk, how long do you cook it?
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by lil_earthmomma View Post
For potatos I like to slice russet potatos the long way, sandwich a scoop of onion rings sauteed in butter inbetween, and wrap the whole thing up with foil. Put these right into the coals (near the edge so they don't get too hot). These are a great prepare ahead side. Whatever we don't eat that night I slice up and pop back into the cooler to become hashbrowns for the next mornings breakfast!
I love the idea of using the leftover potatoes at breakfast.

We do something very similar to this for campfire dinners. Before we leave we make individual foil packets with meat (ground beef works fine), sliced potatoes, fresh green beans, onions for the kids who want them, and salt and pepper all wrapped up in foil. Then they can go right on the hot coals. We call it "hobo supper" and the kids LOVE it. It's a really easy first night of camping dinner because we're usually so busy setting up camp and exploring that we don't want to spend a lot of time cooking. Hopefully the next day of camping we catch fish to eat
:

Have fun camping! Campfire cooking can be really fun too.
 

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We always did hobo packets as well... potatoes, onions, ground beef, s&p wrapped in foil and tossed onto the grill while we were setting up. Along with a bottle of ketchup on the side.


For corn on the cob - you really only need to get it good and hot... trim off any dangling pieces (silk and husk both), toss it on the grill (away from direct flame, as it is flammable) and turn it as it starts to brown. When it's fairly evenly browned, set it aside for a minute or two and then shuck it. Usually this takes about 10 minutes.

For breakfast... it depended. With my family we usually had a camp stove, so we'd often do a full breakfast (pancakes, eggs, etc.), but when it's just a couple of us, we go for simpler fare. Mini bagels on a stick (for toasting), some butter and cream cheese... hard-cooked eggs (either premade or just stick a pan of water over the fire to boil), oatmeal or cold cereal. The simple stuff. As kids, when we went camping was the only time we were allowed sugar cereal - they'd buy the multi-pack of the mini boxes.

If you want something a little more impressive, but still fairly simple, a cast iron griddle can be your friend - french toast doesn't take long to cook, and is pretty easy over an open flame.

And pretty much any food will survive a single night in a small ice chest (or 2-3 nights in a LARGE ice chest). Usually the first thing that would go bad would be milk, since it's difficult to maintain a steady temp without freezing it.
 

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Are you camping in a campground with running water nearby, or out in the woods?

that would make a diff in what I would bring.

Ps..I like the eggs w/ veggies in the nalgene idea....

Pss..We often do the leftover potaotos in the a.m. too.. especially salt potatoes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
What about coffee? I can grind the beans at home and bring them to the site. How can I brew coffee without a coffee pot?

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Originally Posted by dflanag2 View Post
What about coffee? I can grind the beans at home and bring them to the site. How can I brew coffee without a coffee pot?
There are a couple ways... without buying any equipment, you can make cowboy coffee just by boiling water and coffee together in a pot. Supposedly a splash of cold water into it (when it's done) will make the grounds settle and you can pour the coffee off... just be prepared to eat some grounds. A french press will work if you have one. Or a cup-top filter if you have one of those (probably the easiest thing to pack on a camping trip). Or you can always pack a carafe of cold coffee in the ice chest, and heat up a pan of milk to make cafe au lait.
 
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