Friday, April 20, 2018

Fast and Tasty Meals for Camping and RV Cooks

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Camping and RV
Recipe of the Week
Sweet Stovetop Beef Stew
Add a touch of sweetness with a mystery ingredient. Use  fresh or frozen stew vegetables ad lib according to the number of servings you want to make.

3 pounds bite-size lean beef for stew
1/4 cup olive oil
1 or 2 packages, 24 ounces each, vegetables for stew, thawed
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1 cup dry red wine or V-8 juice
1/4 cup tomato paste
2 cups water
1 tablespoon powdered beef bouillon
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1/2 cup pitted, chopped dates
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 cup water
Salt, pepper

In a large, deep skillet or Dutch oven, brown beef in hot oil. Stir in vegetables, scraping up brown bits to coat vegetables. 
     In a bowl whisk balsamic vinegar with the wine, tomato paste, water,  bouillon and garlic salt. Add to the beef with the dates. Cover and cook over low heat until beef is tender. 
     Stir cornstarch into 1 cup water. Add to stew, increase heat and stir until sauce thickens. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serves 6 to 8.
Pressure cooker or instant pot: brown meat, cook stew, thicken gravy. 
Slow cooker: brown meat, add everything up to and including dates, cook 6 hours on Low. Thicken gravy.  

Tips for the Camp Cook

* Make up a package of cornbread mix and cook it in your waffle iron. Here’s one made by Coleman for camping. It is lightweight aluminum, nonstick and can be used on a campfire, gas or electric stove, camp stove or any cooker except induction. No electric hookup needed. I keep two going at once.

* Buy a package of inexpensive packaged Pecan Swirls (e.g. Tastycake brand) and arrange in a buttered skillet. Beat 6 to 8 eggs with salt, pepper and a little milk or cream. Pour over rolls. Cover and cook over medium heat until eggs set. 

* Whisk a tablespoon of dried chives and a teaspoon of dried tarragon into a cup of sour cream. Heat a large can of small, whole potatoes in their own juice. Drain well, toss while hot with sour cream mixture. 

* The next time you whip up a graham cracker crust, substitute one cup shredded coconut for one cup of the graham cracker crumbs.  

* Add variety to pea soup. Use ½ cup lentils per cup of dried peas. 

Campground Potluck Recipe of the Week 
Unbeatable Beet Rolls 

This tasty, sweet, unusual red-streaked bread will be the talk of the campground potluck.

3 packages store-bought dinner rolls
1 1/2 cups bottled beet juice
1 cup light brown sugar

If rolls are not in a container, put them in one to catch run-off. Several hours before serving, use the round handle of a wooden spoon to make holes of varying depths in the rolls.  Bring juice and sugar to a boil until thick, as for pancake syrup. Carefully spoon hot syrup into and over rolls,  allowing it to soak in randomly. 
Do not over-soak or allow rolls to get soggy on the bottom. If you have excess syrup, discard or save it for another use. Set rolls aside to cool. Separate rolls and arrange them on a plate. Makes 3 dozen rolls.  

Survival Food Handbook is different from doomsday prepper books. First, it’s aimed at provisioning your camper, cabin, or vacation home for good times as well as emergencies. Second, it calls for familiar, affordable supermarket staples, not high-cost survival rations. See it here.

The One and Only Recipe 
You’ll Ever Need for.....

Pasta Primavera 
Master Recipe

The essence of Pasta Primavera is springtime freshness, using whatever the garden produces on a given day. The more color and variety the better. It works well with canned chunk chicken, turkey or ham or with no meat at all. 

(Optional) 2 to 4 cups  cooked meat, ham, or poultry. Or, use raw seafood such as shrimp

2 tablespoons olive oil
4 cups diced or chopped vegetables (celery, pea pods, scallions, matchstick carrots, yellow squash,  red and green sweet peppers, torn spinach or kale,  broccoli and cauliflower florets, etc. )
4 cups water
5 chicken flavor bouillon tubes 
1 ½ cups medium pasta such as macaroni, gemelli, rotini
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
2 tablespoons dry white wine OR
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
Grated dry cheese

Cut meat or seafood into bite size. Seet aside.  If using canned meat, use the juice as part of the water measurement. 
Heat oil in a large saucepan and stir-fry vegetables (except leafy greens)  until barely crisp-tender. Add  water and bouillon, bring to a boil and add pasta and cayenne.  When pasta is al dente, stir in spinach and meat or seafood. Cook gently until meat is heated through or seafood firm. Stir in wine or vinegar and serve. Pass the cheese shaker. Serves 4 to 6. 

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