Camp Cuisine

Camp Cuisine - Camping Recipes

Inspire your inner camp chef with recipes for camping trips.  It doesn’t matter if it’s shared around a campfire, cooked in your RV's gourmet kitchen, or take-out from the local deli, food just tastes better on a camping vacation!
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Make Your Own GORP

Make Your Own GORP

What do we always pack when we are planning on going on a hike? Well, the answer depends on the person, but most of us were probably thinking of getting some trail mix, or GORP. Making your own GORP is easy and doesn't take many ingredients or much time. Traditionally, GORP is made of its basic ingredients "good old-fashioned raisins and peanuts," but you'll find that your mix can contain just about anything.

Making GORP or trail mix is actually pretty simple. The best place to start is your local grocery store, preferably one with a good bulk foods section.  The specific ingredients depend on the individual, but you are going to need granola, (see below for the recipe), dried fruit, nuts, and maybe some chocolate.

These ingredients are packed with protein and nutrients, so when mixed they make a great energy supply as well as a delicious snack. When you make GORP yourself, step one is to make a grocery list. You will need lots of oats, or granola, and if you are making your own granola you will also need honey, maple syrup, and vegetable oil.

Next decide what types of dried fruit you want -- raisins, dried cranberries, dried apricots, banana chips, dried pineapple, etc.  If you are feeling really creative you can make a mixture of fruits. On top of the fruit, you will also want nuts, which could be peanuts, almonds, cashews, pecans, or a mix. Finally, you can add a sweet, such as M&Ms or chocolate chips.

Now it is time to make the granola. Making great granola is fairly simple and you can use these skills to make your own delicious breakfast cereal. If you want to make granola for breakfast, experiment by adding ingredients like nuts, coconut flakes, sunflower seeds, wheat germ, and sesame seeds to the raw granola mixture.

To make granola:
2 cups oats
1/8 cup vegetable oil
1/8 cup honey
1/8 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup water

1. Preheat your oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit. Put the oats in a bowl.
2. Spray your measuring cup with non-stick spray before you measure your honey and maple syrup. Then measure the vegetable oil, honey, maple syrup, and water; put all of these ingredients in a small cooking pot.
Note: this may seem like a lot of liquid for the oats to soak up. You don't have to include the water, but it expands the oats and helps them soak up the flavors of the maple syrup and honey.
3. Heat your liquid ingredients over low to medium heat until the ingredients are well blended. Heating them will make it easier to mix the different ingredients thoroughly.
4. Pour the liquid ingredients over the oats and mix thoroughly.
5. Spread the oats out in a single layer on a cookie sheet and toast in your preheated oven until all of the oats are thoroughly dried.

After the granola is thoroughly cooled, mix all of your GORP ingredients together.  And there you have it -- your own homemade GORP ready for copious snacking.

Kid-Friendly Breakfasts

Kid-Friendly Breakfasts

If you are looking for simple breakfast recipes that will knock the socks off your kids, here are a few delicious options. These recipes are easy, fun, and healthy, but amazingly delicious. Depending on what your children like to eat, choose from one of these three options and you are sure to get requests for more.

Fun Pancakes
Pancakes make an easy breakfast meal that requires the most basic baking supplies. They are so simple that you can easily experiment with your recipe to make it suit your family's tastes.

Basic Pancakes
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 egg
3 tablespoons melted butter
1 1/4 cups milk

Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl, then mix in wet ingredients until the batter is smooth. To bake, lightly oil a griddle or frying pan. Heat the griddle over medium high heat. When the griddle is hot, pour the batter on the griddle using as much or as little as you want depending on how big you want your pancakes. The best way to make consistently-sized pancakes is to find a spoon that holds the right amount of batter and pour from the same spoon each time. You only want to turn the pancakes once. When the pancake is just browning on the bottom, slide a spatula underneath and quickly flip the pancake over to cook the other side.

If you want to spice up your pancakes a bit, you can add berries. Blueberries are a very popular option for fruit pancakes. Another kid-friendly addition is mini chocolate chips. The secret to making chocolate chip pancakes is to add 1 to 2 teaspoons of vanilla to the batter and to add the chocolate chips to each pancake individually. If you add the chocolate chips directly to the bowl of batter they will all sink to the bottom and only the very last pancakes will have any chocolate chips.

Yogurt Parfaits

Yogurt Parfaits are another great kid-friendly breakfast. They look exciting, taste great, can be filled with delicious, filling, and healthy ingredients.

You will need:
Yogurt - plain or vanilla are the best options

Get a clear glass for each person you will be serving. Start with a layer of yogurt at the bottom of the glass. Add a layer of granola, then a layer of berries, and continue with this pattern until the glass is full. When eating the parfait, you can eat each layer individually or you can mix it all together.

Lighthouse Eggs
These eggs have an exciting name, but they are easy to make. When you make Lighthouse Eggs you get to enjoy your egg and your toast together.

You will need:

Start by cutting circles out of the center of each piece of bread. One easy way to do this is to use a glass and press down on top of the bread. Warm a lightly-oiled frying pan over medium heat. When the pan is warm, place the bread in the pan and break an egg into the hole in the center of the bread. Fry the egg and bread, turning once, until the egg has cooked to the desired consistency.

These lighthouse eggs are a great way to spice up a basic breakfast meal. They’re also easy to individualize, so you can make the same meal for your child that likes sunny-side up eggs and for the child that likes hard-cooked eggs.

Tropical Fruit Recipes

Tropical Fruit Recipes

As spring and summer roll around, a wider variety of fresh fruits becomes available at our local markets. For those of you lucky enough to live in warm climates, you may have tropical fruits ripening on your trees. Most tropical fruits do not need to be mixed into special recipes to be enjoyed; they are amazing on their own. If you want to try a few new ways to enjoy your tropical fruits, these recipes are a good place to start.

Mango Salsa
Many families love spring and summer-time dinners of fish tacos, which are amazing topped with mango salsa. There are many ways to cook fish tacos (some like their fish fried and others like it grilled.) No matter how you enjoy your fish, this mango salsa will take your taco from "mmm" to "YUM!"

For the Fish Tacos, you will need enough fish to serve all your dinner guests. In addition, you will need 2-4 fresh warmed soft corn tortillas for each dinner guest. If you want to use grilled fish, place the fish on a hot grill and turn only once; cook until it's done, but still moist. If you have time, try making your own corn tortillas.  This is actually fairly simple - you only need water and masa harina. You will find a recipe on the bag of masa harina you buy, which will have the right proportions for the type of masa harina you are using.

Mango salsa can add the perfect combination of sweet and spicy to your fish taco.

You will need:
1 1/2 cups diced mango
1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
1 tablespoon fresh minced jalapeno pepper
1 tablespoon fresh minced cilantro
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
Salt to taste

Mix all ingredients but salt in a large bowl. Add salt to taste.

This salsa is also good if you exchange some of the mango for another type of tropical fruit. You can pick and choose what fruit you like to mix with your mango. Pineapple is a delicious fruit to make into salsa, as is papaya. You may want to try making this salsa a few times to find the proportions and flavors that you like best.

Tropical Fruit Smoothies
Smoothies are a classic way to enjoy fresh fruit. They are great for breakfast, lunch and even desert. This recipe is a simple way to enjoy a variety of tropical fruits.

1 banana, sliced
3 cups tropical fruit cut into 1 inch pieces (you can use papaya, pineapple, passion fruit, mango or any other tropical fruit)
1/3 cup milk or yogurt for a thicker smoothie
1/3 cup orange juice
2 ice cubes

All the fruit should be peeled and seeded. In addition, using frozen fruit makes a much better smoothie. Of course, you will want to use fresh fruit for the very best flavor, so you can freeze your diced fruit before blending it into a smoothie. Once your fruit is frozen, put all ingredients into a blender. If your smoothie is too sweet, you can add some lemon juice, and if it is too tart, you can add a tablespoon or so of sugar. Blend until smooth and pour into a chilled glass. Add colored straw and paper umbrellas for extra flare.

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