Friday, March 24, 2017

Quick Menus for Camping Cooks

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Camping and RV Recipe of the Week
Tropic Isle Pie
    Just a little cooking adds up to a LOT of compliments when you put this pie on your crew's plates.

1 large or 2 small graham cracker crusts
20-ounce can of crushed pineapple, not drained
3/4 cup water
1 ½ cups sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
½ cup golden raisins
3 ripe but firm bananas
1 cup shredded coconut
½ cup coarsely broken pecans (optional)
Whipped topping

    Chill crusts. In a saucepan mix pineapple and sugar. Stir cornstarch into cold water, add to the pineapple and cook until it thickens. Cool. Fold in bananas, coconut, raisins and nuts. Put in pie crust(s). Frost with whipped topping.  Chill. This is best served on the same day it’s made.

What foods do you have hand for emergencies in the RV or camp? How much food will you need for a week in the boondocks? Do you really need survival rations that cost a lot and taste awful?  See Janet Groene’s Survival Food Handbook

Campground Potluck Recipe of the Week
Sweet Potato Dressing
    Here’s an easy,  affordable side dish to make at your campsite to wow ‘em at the campground potluck. Jimmy Dean, for one, offers sausage crumbles in 9.6-ounce packages.
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 packages (about a pound) fully cooked sausage crumbles
Large onion, diced
1 tablespoon each parsley flakes and poultry seasoning
#10 can of sweet potatoes, drained

    Heat the oil and stir-fry the sausage crumbles and onion until fragrant. Set aside.
    Open the can of sweet potatoes but leave the lid in place while you drain off the juice. Save the juice. Now remove the lid and mash the sweet potatoes coarsely in the can with the seasonings. Add  just enough juice to make them moist. Lumpy is OK.  Spoon into a baking dish or Dutch oven alternately with the sausage mix, mixing as you go.
    Oven method: Bake in a buttered pan at 350 degrees until it’s heated through.
    Stove-top or campfire method: Put mixture in a greased pan or Dutch oven and heat through.

    Make your own trail mix to save money, control ingredients, control portions and reduce packaging. Each big batch can be served in a bowl or measured into snack bags to carry in a pocket or tackle box. See easy recipes at Create A Gorp.

Camp Cook Tips

    * To make 4 muffins, whisk together 1/4 cup real mayonnaise, ½ cup milk and a cup of self-rising flour. 

    * Use your sewing machine  buttonhole attachment to put buttonholes in all your camping washcloths, dish cloths, tea towels, bath towels and hand towels. Then you can hang them anywhere, even if you have nothing more than a nail or twig to hang them on. 

    * Double up on plastic tablecloths for the campground picnic table. One covers the table. The spare can be spread over the table and everything on it if there’s a sudden rain shower. 

    * Make your own gravy mix. Stir together 2 tablespoons powdered chicken bouillon per cup of cornstarch. To make gravy mix 1 1/2 tablespoons of the mix with each cup of cold water. Then cook, stirring,  until it thickens.      

    * If you need a funnel, curl a cheap paper plate into a cone. 

    * Cut up a deli-roasted chicken. Finely chop a tart apple and an onion. Melt a little butter in a skillet and stir in the apple, onion and a tablespoon of curry powder. Stir in a can of condensed cream soup and a cup of light cream. Smother the chicken, heat through and serve over rice.    

Bonus Recipe
Skillet Raisin Oat Bread
    No electric mixer needed. For weekend camping, measure dry ingredients into zip-top bags  before you go. Better bring several!
2 ½ cups flour (all white or part whole wheat)
½ cup each brown sugar and minute oats
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon each baking soda and salt

1 cup milk or water
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 cup raisins

    Measure dry ingredients into a clean bag and jostle to mix. 

    Heavily grease a 10-inch heavy skillet. In a bowl whisk liquids, then dump in dry ingredients. Fold together until everything is evenly moist. Fold in raisins. Put batter in the skillet and cover tightly Place over low/medium coals or burner. Check after 20 minutes, and every three minutes after that. It’s done when it’s springy to the touch and bread pulls slightly away from edges of the pan.
    Let cool in the pan 5 minutes. Serve out of the pan or turn out on a cutting board and cut in wedges. This moist bread is good with or without butter. Serves 6.
    Cook’s note: To bake in a loaf pan, give it 40 to 50 minutes in the oven at 350 degrees. For easier slicing cool, then wrap and let “season” several hours.


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