Let’s talk about Campfire Cooking today, specifically, setting up a Camp Kitchen when you are staying outdoors and away from home either by the lake, the river, or at your favorite campground.
1. Where Should You Set Up: If there isn’t a picnic table or other defining marker that will determine your eating area, then take a look around and find a spot that you think would be a great cooking and dining place. Make sure it is at least 100 feet or so away from your tent/sleeping space so you are safe from furry invaders in the night. Make sure sure it is as sheltered from weather as you can get and the ground is flat where you will place your Cooker.
2. Set up the Kitchen: Here is where we start unpacking all of the food, including toothpaste and any toiletries with a scent that would attract those furry critters. Organize all of your cooking gear (pots, pans, skillets, utensils) and separate from your food and other items. Hopefully you brought a couple of coolers with you and we recommend you store your drinks separate from your other perishable food items. Organize your dry goods based upon the meals you will be cooking over the Campfire. It’s a good idea to separate into it’s own bag or box, cover and place in a shaded area. If you leave camp, make sure to lock your kitchen stuff up in your vehicle.
3. Preparing Your Space: We are almost to the best part, eating! Did you bring tables with you? Set those up with chairs and if you are really going primitive style, with no modern conveniences, see if you can find a rock or stump to dine upon. No rocks or stumps, be prepared for Criss Cross Apple Sauce style dining around the Cooker or under a tree! If you have a Pappy’s Campfire Cooker and you brought it with you, drop that puppy on the ground, load it with firewood or charcoal and set up your trash area. Cooking at night, set up your lantern or headlamps and you are all set to cook!
4. Getting Ready to Cook: What are you cooking? Hot Dogs, Marshmallows, and other “stick” roasting type foods? If you brought Roasting Forks, have those ready, or go gather sticks to have on hand for roasting. Maybe you went all out and brought steaks, chicken, or kabobs. If you didn’t prep these before leaving home, it’s a good time to season these and then place them back into the cooler to soak up the seasonings while you get the fire ready. Get ready any and all other foods that you did not prep ahead to be ready to go on the fire, as well as the cooking gear you will need for that meal.
5. Time to Fire it Up Baby!: That’s right, light it up! Get your wood or your charcoal burning and get a nice flame going. If you are using a Pappy’s Campfire Cooker, once your fire is going you can place meats directly on the grill plate or veggies in a cast iron skillet on the grill plate. If you are roasting, slide that grill plate over and stick those weenies in the fire. Eat your delicious meal and enjoy the sounds and sights of nature!
6. Clean Up: My least favorite but necessary part, cleaning up. Gather all of your trash and dispose of it if the area you are camping in has a trash barrel. If not store all of your trash away from your area until it’s time to go so that you are not attracting critters or bugs to your eating or sleeping area. Hopefully you brought a bucket or basin for washing your dishes in with soap and a wash cloth. Wash up your dishes, dry them immediately and store them in the box you brought them in. It’s a great idea if you brought a large pot to put some water in there, place it on the Grille Plate for a few minutes and you have warm water to wash your dishes in! Great for chilly evenings.
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