Two new cookbooks are on my BUY list. The first is 150 Best Toaster Oven Recipes. A toaster oven is light to carry and it roasts, toasts, bakes and broils. (Get one for camping, one as a gift for a college student in a dorm room.) Order at https://amzn.to/2tGJxGz
Seriously Good Freezer Meals is a guide to dishes to freeze ahead for camping or anytime convenience. Recipes cover small and large batches and techniques for fitting the most food into the smallest spaces. Order the book at
Camping and RV Recipe of the Week
Ham and Potato Curry
Use two cans of chunk ham or cut up a canned one-pound ham. Depending on how spicy you like curry, use one or two tablespoons. This complete, one-dish meal serves right out of the skillet.
1/4 stick butter
4 medium potatoes, scrubbed and sliced OR
2 to 3 cans of sliced potatoes, drained and rinsed
Medium onion, sliced
Medium tart apple, peeled and sliced (optional)
1 pound canned or cooked ham, diced
1 to 2 tablespoons curry powder or paste
1 cup heavy cream
½ cup sour cream
1 tablespoon maple, corn or agave syrup
Optional garnish: sliced scallions, grated cheese, chutney, chopped peanuts, raisins or shredded coconut
In a large skillet, melt butter and swirl to coat pan. Layer potatoes, onion, apple and ham. In a small bowl whisk curry, cream, sour cream and syrup and pour over skillet. Cover and cook over low-medium fire until vegetables are tender. Serves 4.
Campground Potluck Recipe of the Week
Gnarly Barley Salad
2 cups cooked pearl barley
1/4 cup bottle vinaigrette
2 heads romaine, cut in bite site
Medium sweet green pepper, cut in wedges
Medium sweet red pepper, cut in wedges
1 bunch scallions, sliced (white and light green only)
12-ounce package matchstick carrots
8 ounce packaged sliced fresh mushrooms
Cook barley in water or chicken broth. When barley has cooled to lukewarm, stir in 1/4 cup vinaigrette. Chill. Assemble prepared peppers, scallions, carrots and mushrooms. Chill. All this can be done up to two days ahead and carried in two plastic bags.
Just before serving, put barley in a bowl and fluff with a fork. Then toss everything together with vinaigrette to taste. Serves 10.
Tips for the Camp Cook
* When a recipe calls for oats in a cookie recipe or in a crunchy topping for cobbler, use granola instead.
* Make a Sausage, Shrimp and Suds Boil. Brown 2 pounds of onions in butter in a large kettle until they are caramelized. Add three cans or bottles of IPA-type beer and two cups water. Boil two pounds of pricked (to prevent splitting) brats until thoroughly cooked. Remove brats to the grill. Keep broth at a boil. While brats brown on the grill, boil shrimp or fish in the same broth.
* Rule of thumb: when a chicken salad recipe calls for three cups diced, cooked chicken, one pound of skinless, boneless chicken should do it.
* To keep a delicate skillet meal warm without overcooking, such as an omelet or fish, cut a piece of parchment the diameter of the skillet. Butter it and place it over the food. (Keep this paper away from open flame).
* Drain a 20-ounce can of pineapple tidbits into a large bowl. Stir in a packet of instant French Vanilla pudding mix until it’s dissolved. Then fold in the tidbits, a cup or two of thawed whipped topping and a cut-up angel food cake. Serve at once or chill.
The Only Recipe You’ll Ever Need For
Fudgey Bar Cookies
Make these dense, moist bar cookies with any flavor cake mix. You don’t need an electric mixer. There are many choices in chocolate cake mixes alone (to make brownies) plus strawberry, lemon, spice, orange, yellow, white, French vanilla. Make a different treat every day.
½ cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons water or milk
Two-layer cake mix, any flavor
Grease a 9 X 13-inch pan and set the oven for 350 degrees. In a bowl whisk oil, eggs and water or milk. Dump in cake mix and stir until it’s evenly moist. Batter will be thick. Bake now or fold in:
1 to 1 ½ cups shredded coconut, chopped nuts, raisins, granola, chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, cut up orange slice candy, chopped candy bars or golden raisins.
Bake, cool and cut in squares. Serve now or with:
Frosting, whipped cream, whipped topping, ice cream, flavored ice cream syrup, warm vanilla sauce or hot fudge sauce.