Camp And RV Cook provides tips on how to save time, fuel, work and water when you prepare meals in your RV, pop-up camper, tent site or boat galley. Janet Groene cooks quick, easy, good, clean and green RV meals. She has lived, traveled, earned while living full-time 10 years in RV and boat.
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Camp and RV Recipe of the Week Sunrise Sausage Gravy 1 pound lean bulk sausage 1 can condensed cream of mushroom soup 1/3 cup water, white wine or milk Small can diced water chestnuts, well drained 10-ounce can diced tomatoes with chilies (hot, medium or mild) 8-ounce package shredded or grated cheese Additional milk or water if mixture is too thick Hot sauce to taste (optional)
Fry out sausage until crumbly. Spoon off any excess fat. Stir in remaining ingredients, ending with cheese. When it melts, spoon over any starch such as biscuits, rice, grits, polenta, croutons, baked potatoes etc. Pass the pepper mill and/or hot sauce. Serves 6. Cook’s note: Sausage and cheese are naturally salty, so don’t add more salt.
Campground Potluck Recipe of the Week Roasted Red Pepper Dip
One of the most popular dishes at campground potlucks is always the dip. Serve this sumptuous dip with starchy treats such as chips or with a colorful tray of cut-up crisp vegetables. 12-ounce package soft silken tofu ½ cup mayonnaise 1 teaspoon garlic powder 2 cans, about 14 ounces each, artichoke hearts, drained 1 cup chopped roasted red pepper, well drained 16-ounce package fine-shredded cheese
In a bowl mash tofu with mayonnaise and garlic powder. (I use a potato masher). Chop artichoke hearts and peppers and let them drain again. Fold artichokes, peppers and cheese into tofu mixture. Serve as is or bake or nuke just until cheese melts. Serves 15 to 20.
Tips for the Camp Cook *To freeze cookies, waffles and other stackable items to take camping later, freeze in a single layer first on a baking sheet When frozen, stack with layers of waxed paper between and package.
* Make a healthful “fondue” dessert. Put a big bowl of applesauce on the table and use biscotti for dippers.
* Have a whole book of shortcut recipes. Janet Groene's Cooking Aboard your RV is packed with ideas, tips and shameless shortcuts. * No blender in camp? Briskly whisk 1 ½ cups partially thawed whipped topping with a cup of cold milk, 1/3 cup flavored syrup, ½ teaspoon vanilla and 1/8 teaspoon salt. Pour and serve. Instant milk shake.
Freeze-Ahead Recipe of the Week Chicken Meatball Soup Concentrate
This recipe is easily doubled. Don't forget to take bouillon cubes or other broth on your camping trip to complete this soup. It's OK to add water but it won't be as full-bodied.
1 egg 1 pound ground chicken ½ cup seasoned bread crumbs Pinch salt
3 cups water 3 chicken or beef bouillon cubes
2 tablespoons olive oil 2 ribs celery, chopped 2 medium carrots, chopped, Medium onion, diced 1 teaspoon dried oregano 1 teaspoon dried basil 6 cups cooked or canned white beans such as Great Northern or cannellini 5-ounce package baby spinach
In a bowl whisk the egg, then mix in chicken, bread crumbs and salt. Form into small balls and set aside. Bring water and bouillon to a boil and drop in meatballs gradually, keeping water at a boil. Cook meatballs until firm. Set aside in the broth. In a skillet, heat oil and saute vegetables to desired tenderness. Add herbs, beans and spinach to heat through. Add to meatballs and broth. Heat through to blend flavors. Cool and measure into packages for the freezer. In camp, thaw soup. Dissolve 1 bouillon cube in 1 cup water and add to 2 cups soup concentrate. Soup can also be thinned with tomato juice or canned broth at the ratio of 1 cup to 2 cups soup concentrate (or to taste).
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Camp and RV Recipe of the Week Sunshine Carrot Slaw Add crunch to burgers. Toss it with salads. Spoon it into fish tacos. Here’s a change from the same ‘ol salsa or coleslaw.
Ggrated carrots are available in the produce section
12-ounce package shredded carrots Medium yellow sweet pepper, cut in small slivers 2 cups tiny yellow tomatoes, quaartered ½ cup minced cilantro Small sweet onion such as Vidalia, finely chopped 1/4 cup each lemon juice and olive oil
Toss everything together and adjust seasonings by adding salt, pepper, more lime juice to taste. Serve at once or chill.
Tips for the Camp Cook
* There’s a knack to campfire grilled broccoli. Cut stalk in half lengthwise. Discard tough bottom end of the stem. Peel remaining stem. Brush with a mixture of lemon juice and vegetable oil. Grill, turn and turn again, brushing each time with lemon mixture. Sprinkle with salt and serve.
* Make sweet bread in the slow cooker. Whisk 2 eggs with 1 cup sour cream, ½ cup sugar, 1 cup milk, 1 teaspoon vanilla or orange extract. Fold in 3 cups biscuit mix and ½ cup raisins. Combine well but do not over-beat. Put in greased cooker. Bake on High 2 hours or until springy to the touch.
* If your homemade or store-bought cake is just too moist, press it into walnut-size balls and dip in melted chocolate to make truffles.
* Dice leftover French toast to make the next breakfast strata.
* Don’t hang kitchen or bath gadgets from hooks in the RV. Road motion causes them to swing, eventually scarring the walls.
Campground Potluck Recipe of the Week Slow Cooker Appe-teasers Finger foods always go well at potlucks. Provide plenty of toothpicks.
Try this as a change from the same ol’ smokies and ketchup. 3 packages, 12 ounces each, any lean link sausage 2 tablespoons cornstarch 1 teaspoon ground ginger 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper 1 cup apricot jam 1/2 cup each mustard and mayonnaise 1/4 cup soy sauce Medium onion, diced Medium red or yellow sweet pepper, seeded and diced fine 2 tablespoons minced garlic
Cut sausage links into bites. size. In a clean bag, mix cornstarch, ginger and cayenne. Add sausage pieces and shake to coat. Lift out sausage pieces and place them in a greased slow cooker. Discard leftover cornstarch mixture. In a bowl whisk jam, mustard and mayonnaise. Fold in onion, pepper, garlic and soy sauce and spoon over sausages. Stir, cover and cook 2 hours on High. Stir and serve with skewers or toothpicks.
Have your own collection of Janet Groene's shortcut recipes. Cooking Aboard Your RV, 2nd Edition, is available in paperback or Kindle. See more than 200 easy recipes plus tips. Order here.
Freeze-Ahead Recipe of the Week Cook twice as much as you need at home, then freeze leftovers in right-size portions for camping. Dinner for one? Two? Warm up your camp meals in boilable bags and never have to wash another pot.
3 to 4 large, meaty turkey thighs (4 to 5 pounds) Vegetable oil for browning
2 large onions, chopped 4 to 6 ribs celery, diced 1 tablespoon minced garlic 1 cup dry white wine 16--ounce can tomato sauce 2 teaspoon each dried oregano and lemon pepper 1 teaspoon lemon flavor dessert mix 12 to 16 ounces sliced small mushrooms 1 teaspoon crumbled, dried oregano 1 teaspoon lemon pepper
Lightly salt turkey. In a large Dutch oven heat the oil and brown turkey. Cover and cook over low heat until it’s tender. Cool, discard skin and bone and cut in bite size. In the same Dutch oven reheat oil and stir-fry onion, celery and garlic. Keep stir frying while adding mushrooms and turkey bites. Whisk together white wine and tomato sauce with oregano, lemon gelatin and lemon pepper. Add. Cover and cook over low-medium heat until vegetables are tender. Cool and package, allowing about 2/3 cup per serving. Freeze. Thaw, heat and spoon over a starch such as rice, toast, biscuits, pasta, noodles.
Camping and RV Recipe of the Week No-Fork Nacho Salad Here’s a cold, crunchy salad for a hot day. Cut chicken and vegetables small so they are scoop-able. If you make it ahead, chill but don’t toss with the dressing until just before serving.
About 3 cups meat from a rotisserie chicken, shredded or finely chopped 2 cups shredded cheese 2 cups diced zucchini, jicama, yellow squash, sweet onion, ad lib 1 can black beans, rinsed and well drained ½ cup minced cilantro or parsley 5 or 6 radishes, trimmed and cut up Medium avocado cut in small dice Small can diced chilies, well drained 2 to 4 diced Roma tomatoes About 1/3 cup citrus vinaigrette to taste 1 bag of tortilla chips or Scoopers
Toss everything together in a large bag to mix. Toss again with dressing. Spread salad in a wide dish such as a casserole so everyone can gather ‘round and dig in. Or, put in individual bowls. Pass the scoopers. Serves 6.
Tips for the Camp Cook * Dishwasher detergent can rout soil like no other cleaner. I periodically take some camping galley gear home for hot water wash in the dishwasher.
* Save space, time, mess with this stainless steel, silicone-covered, roll-up drain board. It fits over the camper sink to serve as a dish drainer, cooling rack, hot pad, produce wash rack, extra shelf. It’s easy to clean and can go home for a trip through the dishwasher. Simply roll up to stow.
* Space saving square lidded containers are for preparing camping meals ahead of time. Invest in reusable, micro-waveable, stackable boxes. Store food, heat in the box, eat from the box.
Campground Potluck Recipe of the Week Hot Potato Salad Why peel and boil potatoes when you can make a delicious potato salad using instant potatoes? Diced celery, water chestnuts and onion add toothsome texture.
12 servings instant potatoes 1 tablespoon yellow mustard 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar 16-ounce carton sour cream Medium Vidalia onion, diced Small can diced water chestnuts, drained and rinsed 2 to 3 ribs celery, diced Small jar of cooked, diced bacon bits
1 cup (or more to taste) grated Cheddar cheese
Make potatoes according to package directions and stir in mustard, sour cream, onion, celery and bacon. Put in a greased baking dish. To bake now, sprinkle top with cheese and bake at 350 degrees until it’s heated through. To save for later, cover casserole and refrigerate. If it’s chilled, let the casserole come to "room" temperature for about 30 minutes, then sprinkle with cheese and bake until heated through. Baking times depend on the temperature of the dish when it went into the oven. Serves 12.
Boondocking and out of fresh food? Find recipes that require no fresh ingredients at Janet Groene’s BoatCook. Because all recipe are made without any fresh ingredients they're an excellent guide for stocking your emergency pantry. Freeze-Ahead Recipe of the Week Wild Rice Stuffing
Stuffing can stuff many things, not just birds. Tuck away packages of this tasty stuffing to serve as a side dish or to stuff acorn squash, pork chops, rolled flounder, grilled avocados or zucchini.
2 tart apples such as Granny Smith 1 tablespoon sugar 2 tablespoons butter 2 packages wild rice and rice mix 1 cup grated carrots 2 cups shredded cooked chicken (optional) 1 cup raisins, chopped walnuts or dried cranberries (optional)
Dice apples, sprinkle with sugar and briefly saute in hot butter. Set aside. Prepare wild rice mix according to package directions, adding the carrots to the boiling water. Cool rice and fold in apples and any other ingredients. Package for the freezer, allowing ½ to 2/3 cup per serving.
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Camping and RV Recipe of the Week Coconut Rum Custard This isn’t a dish to prepare just before you drive because it’s liquid until it sets. Pour it into individual dishes, a pie shell or one large dish. It’s good chilled or at “room” temperature but do refrigerate it for food safety.
5 eggs 1/4 cup brown sugar, packed 1 tablespoon cornstarch 2 cups milk (fresh, canned or reconstituted dry milk) 1/4 cup coconut rum OR 1 teaspoon rum extract Shredded coconut or other garnish
In a cold saucepan, whisk eggs until foamy, gradually whisking in sugar and cornstarch. Gradually stir in milk, then place over medium-low heat, stirring constantly until it’s thick. Stir in rum or extract. Pour into 5 or 6 serving dishes and cool . Garnish just before serving. Cook’s note: A skin forms over the custard as it cools so this looks better with a garnish.
Tips for the Camp Cook Campfire Cookware 101
Cast iron cookware has been a camping essential for centuries. Aluminum wasn’t introduced to the public until the early 1900's. Cast aluminum cookware became popular with home cooks in the 1920's and ‘30's. Today both cast iron and cast aluminum pans, skillets and dutch ovens are available. Which is for you?
Cast iron in slow to heat up but it also holds heatlonger. Because it spreads heat slowly it develops hot spots over a small burner. It’s best for oven use or in a bed of coals It’s inexpensive, extremely durable and it imparts an incomparable, down-home taste to food. When properly “seasoned” it’s fairly nonstick. Unlike aluminum, it can be used over an induction burner Cast iron pots are very heavy to carry, cook with and stow and they leave rust stains if not properly cared for and stored. Cast iron shouldn’t be washed in a dishwasher or with harsh de-greasers or it loses its “seasoning”.
The best feature of cast aluminum (not stamped aluminum) cookware is that it creates an even envelope of heat, even when used over a small burner. It's light to carry, cook with and stow. It doesn't rust. Used as a stove-top oven, it pre-heats evenly on the bottom and up the sides. It can be washed with soap or detergents or in a dishwasher. It can be used on induction stoves with an interface. It may cost more than cast iron. Is there a link between brain damage and aluminum cookware? There is disagreement on that. In any case, the food doesn’t have to touch aluminum. If you prefer, bake your bread, cake, pie or casserole in a stainless steel pan placed on a shall rack inside a preheated cast aluminum dutch oven.
Campground Potluck Recipe of the Week Cole Slaw Chicken Salad
Here’s a way to turn a pound of shredded chicken BBQ into a tangy, healthful, affordable salad for a crowd.. Barbecue gives it a special look and tang and the ginger dressing adds just the tiniest kick.
1 package red cabbage slaw mix 1 package angel hair cole slaw mix Large red onion, cut in paper-thin crescents 1 red sweet pepper, cut in slivers 1- pound tub shredded chicken barbecue (e.g. Lloyd’s) Bottled Asian sesame-ginger salad dressing
In a large bowl toss two cole slaw mixes with pepper and onion to mix well. Leave the barbecue out of the fridge for 30 minutes to loosen up. Twist a fork in the barbecue to break up the shreds. Add barbecue to vegetables a little at a time, tossing lightly to mix well with cabbage mixture. Add dressing to taste. Chill or serve at “room” temperature. Serves 10.
Freeze-Ahead Recipe of the Week Beef ‘n Butter Bean Stew This soupy, spicy stew recipe is easily multiplied. It can also work with other meats such as pork or turkey. Use canned butter beans or save money by cooking your own. The more variety the better when adding root vegetables.
1 to 2 pounds stew for beef, cut in small bite size 2 tablespoons vegetable oil Large onion, diced 1 tablespoon minced garlic 1 teaspoon crumbled dried oregano ½ teaspoon each cinnamon, ginger 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves 32-ounce carton beef broth 12-ounce bottle dark beer 4 cups peeled and diced root vegetables (sweet potato, carrot, rutabaga, parsnip, turnip, white potato) 15-ounce can large lima beans (aka butter beans)
In a large kettle brown meat, gradually stirring in oion and garlic. Add remaining ingredients except cooked butter beans. Cover and cook until meat is tender. Cool and package, allowing 1½ to 2 cups per main dish portion. .
See Janet Groene’s Pantry Recipe of the Week, using only shelf-stable ingredients at Boat Cook. These recipes are great for emergencies or times when you’re just too tuckered out to cook from raw.
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Camping and RV Recipe of the Week First Come, First Served Quickie Breakfast Squares When you need an early start to get into a campground that operates on a first-come basis, you don’t have time for bacon and eggs. Pack everything the night before, hit the road and eat a stick-to-the-ribs breakfast somewhere along the way. Note that no electric mixer is needed, so this is also an easy recipe to stir up in camp.
4 cups one-minute oats ½ teaspoon salt 2 teaspoons cinnamon 2 teaspoons baking powder 1 cup chopped, unsalted nuts 1 cup raisins or dried cranberries 2/3 cup brown sugar 1 cup chocolate or butterscotch chips (optional) ½ cup canola oil 2 eggs 1 ½ cups milk
Butter or spray a 9 X 13-inch baking pan. Set the oven for 350 degrees. Put dry ingredients in a large, clean bag and shake gently to mix. In a large bowl whisk oil, eggs and milk. Dump in dry ingredients and use a spatula to mix until everything is evenly moistened. Batter will be very thick. Bake 30 minutes, cool 15 minutes, and use a serrated knife to cut in 18 portions. Wrap individually for a quick getaway tomorrow morning. Bars can also be frozen. Makes 18 bars. No-Oven Method: Grease a heavy skillet or Dutch oven (preferably cast aluminum) and spread batter in it. Cover tightly. Nestle in well-started campfire coals or place over a low-medium burner. Bake until it’s firm and springy to the touch. Bottom and sides will be nicely browned. The top will not get brown.
Campground Potluck Recipe of the Week This recipe is from author Rivky Kleiman and her newest book, Simply Gourmet. An expert in Kosher cooking, Ms. Kleiman puts a simple spin on gourmet recipes for this new cookbook.
Recipe and photo reprinted with permission from Simply Gourmet by Rivky Kleiman Photo by Moshe Wulliger, ArtScroll Shaar Press/May 15, 2019
Waldorf Slaw Pareve Yields 10 servings This crispy slaw delivers satisfaction with every crunchy bite.
1 (14-oz) bag shredded cabbage 1½ cups shredded red cabbage 2 Granny Smith apples, with peel, cored and cut into matchsticks 2 ribs celery, diced ½ cup fresh blueberries ½ cup red onion, diced ½ cup whole cashews
Dressing ½ cup apple cider vinegar 1/3 cup sugar 1/3 cup canola oil ½ tsp sea salt ¼ tsp black pepper ¼ tsp onion powder ¼ tsp garlic powder
1. In a large serving bowl, toss together cabbages, apples, celery, blueberries, red onion, and cashews. 2. Prepare the dressing: In a small saucepan, over medium heat, bring vinegar, sugar, and oil to a boil. Stir in salt and spices. Set aside to cool slightly. 3. Pour dressing over salad; toss to coat well. Author Tip This salad gets better as it absorbs the dressing, so it’s perfect to prepare in advance. Janet adds: because blueberries sometimes stain other ingredients I fold them in just before serving.
Tips for the Camp Cook * Have a flavor explosion on hand when you have a supply of spiced ghee. Gently heat a cup of ghee and stir in zest of two limes, 2 tablespoons lime juice, 1 tablespoon tahini, and 1 teaspoon each salt, paprika and dried tarragon. Keep cold up to one month. Use by the teaspoon in hot vegetables, omelets, on hot breads. * Toss 2 sliced bananas in a skillet with 2 tablespoons each butter and sugar. When they’re caramel colored, stir in 3 cups cooked rice and heat through. Good with meat from the grill. * How to keep leftover rice? I often make extra rice to serve later. While it’s hot, spread it on a sheet pan lined with foil or waxed paper and let it cool. That way it won’t congeal into one, large lump.
Freeze-Ahead Recipe of the Week Rice and Ratatouille This is a vegetarian/vegan dish when made with vegetable broth. For a meatier mix add bits of cooked chicken, turkey, pork or beef and it’s also delicious with chunks of seafood.
2 pounds eggplant 1/4 cup olive oil Large green and red peppers, seeded and diced Large zucchini, diced 2 large onions, diced 1/4 cup minced garlic. 2 one-quart cartons broth (chicken, vegetable or beef) 4 cups white or brown rice 28-ounce can diced tomatoes Salt, pepper to taste
Peel and dice eggplant and dice other vegetables. In a large pot, heat oil. Keep stir-frying vegetables and garlic until they are limp. Add broth and tomatoes and bring to a boil. Stir in rice. Cover and cook over reduced heat until rice is tender. Season to taste. Stir in diced, cooked meat or fish if using. Cool to lukewarm and measure into individual bags, allowing 2 cups per main dish serving. Makes about 20 portions. Thaw, heat and sprinkle with grated Parmesan. This is an idea dish to freeze in boilable bags. Variation: Ratatouille is also a good dish to freeze alone, then heat and serve over any starch such as rice or pasta, or as a sauce on omelets, hotdogs and hamburgers. Cook’s note: if you’re not fond of peppers, reduce or omit them. In a frozen dish they tend to increase in flavor.
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Campground Potluck Recipe of the Week Tortilla Spirals Put out these finger-lickin’ good snacks before or during the potluck party and you’ll win rave notices. 2 packages, 8 ounces each, cream cheese 8-ounce carton of sour cream 1 tablespoon onion juice or grated onion 4-ounce jar of chopped pimentos, well drained 4-ounce can of chopped green chilies, well drained 1 to 2 tablespoons capers, well drained 6 to 8 burrito-size flour tortillas
Let cream cheese warm to “room” temperature or nuke it for a few seconds for easy mixing. Add the sour cream, onion juice, pimentos and chilies. Mix well. Spread on tortillas. Roll up, wrap and chill. Just before serving cut in slices.
Freeze-Ahead Recipe of the Week Bacon Spaghetti Sauce
You'll use this savory sauce on everything from pasta to chicken cutlets and omelets. Simmer a large batch and freeze in right-size portions for camping.
1 pound thick-slice bacon, cut up 1 pound ground beef 1 pound ground pork 1 teaspoon each salt, pepper, dried garlic granules 1 pound carrots, peeled and chopped 2 large onions, diced 2 cans, 28 ounces each, crushed tomatoes 1 cup dry red wine 3 cups beef or chicken broth
Fry out bacon until it's crisp and remove to paper towels. Fry out ground pork and beef in the same pan, breaking it into crumbles. Spoon off excess fat. Over high heat, continue stir frying to add carrots and onions, scraping up brown bits. Add tomatoes, wine and broth. Cover and simmer 3-4 hours to thicken. Add bacon bits and freeze in portions suitable for your own needs.
Camp and RV Recipe of the Week
HamMiracle This crazy combination of ingredients is an insanely delicious way to have ham in a large slow cooker or Dutch oven.
Bone-in half ham, 5 to 6 pounds 2 cups brown sugar 1 cup strong tea 1 teaspoon cinnamon ½ teaspoon ginger 1/4 cup Galliano liqueur 20-ounce can crushed pineapple
Lightly grease the slow cooker or Dutch oven. Press brown sugar evenly in the bottom and lay the ham on top, cut side down. Drain pineapple and whisk the juice with the tea, spices and liqueur. Stir in pineapple and spoon over ham. Cover and cook 6 hours on Low. If using a Dutch oven, cook over well-started coals 3 to 5 hours or until internal temperature reaches at least 145 degrees. Remove ham to a cutting board. Let rest 15 to 20 minutes, then slice. Stir sauce and serve on the side.
Variations: Try the ham recipe with different flavored teas such as peach or cranberry tea and with different liqueur such as Cherry Heering or Triple Sec.
Cooking note: Whatever your cooking method, keep heat low and don’t peek to often or moisture escapes. If ham is boiling dry add another cup of water or tea.
If Dad is an RV-er or prepper, get him a book for Father’s Day. Both these books come in Kindle or paperback Survival Food Handbook is a guide to provisioning the camper or your emergency pantry at home with shelf-stable foods from the supermarket. Survive refrigerator failure, stove failure, travel delays. Recover foods after a floor or fire. Bake bread without an oven. Cooking Aboard Your RVis all about shortcuts that save space, time, water, fuel, hassle, mess. Dad will use these 200-plus delicious recipes. Bonus Recipe Chili for Two If you’re an empty nester you probably never made chili for less than a crowd. Here is a little recipe that feeds two hearty eaters for one meal or one person for two meals.1 tablespoon olive oil Small onion, diced Half a green pepper, seeded and diced 1 teaspoon minced garlic 2 teaspoons chili powder 10- to 12-ounce can roast beef in gravy 8-ounce can of tomato sauce 1 large or 2 small Roma tomatoes, diced 8-ounce can kidney beans Grated cheese (optional) Crushed corn chips (optional) Sour cream (optional)
Sizzle onion, pepper and garlic in hot oil, gradually stirring in chili powder and roast beef. Break up beef with the spoon. Cover and cook 15 to 20 minutes over low heat until onion is tender. Stir in tomatoes and beans and..
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Taste the freedom of the open road
Serve this easy one-pot treat as a vegetarian meal or make it meaty by throwing in cooked or canned meat or fish. The tasty artichokes make it special.
Camping and RV Recipe of the Week Popeye One-Pot
10-ounce box frozen chopped spinach 14-ounce can artichokes 1 tablespoon vegetable oil Medium onion, finely diced 1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 can condensed cream of mushroom soup 1/3 cup milk or water ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg 1 can chunk chicken, turkey, ham or tuna (optional) *
Grated dry cheese such as Parmesan (optional)
*To make this a meatless main dish use 3 or 4 chopped, hard-cooked eggs or finely diced firm tofu
Drain spinach in a sieve and press out all wetness. Drain and chop artichokes. Set aside. In a large skillet, heat oil and stir-fry onion and garlic until soft. Whisk soup, milk or water and nutmeg. Add to skillet, stirring to heat through. Reduce heat and stir in drained spinach, artichokes, spinach and protein of choice . If mixture is too thick, add water, broth or more milk. Heat through and serve over biscuits, toast, pasta, rice, noodles. Pass the Parmesan. Serves 4.
Order now for Mother’s Day. Cooking Aboard Your RV has more than 200 scrumptious, shortcut recipes for the small kitchen, motorhome, RV, travel trailer. Save space, time, hassle, water, fuel. http://amzn.to/1NdWI4o
Tips for the Camp Cook
* Make nachos with Tater Tots instead of tortilla chips.
* Don’t throw away pickle juice. Think of it a infused vinegar. Use a little pickled pepper juice in deviled eggs. Boil juice from bread and butter pickles, pour over carrot sticks and chill overnight. Moisten ground beef with sweet pickle juice when making burgers or meatloaf.
* Save money and space by making your own chili seasoning instead of buying it in packets. In a bowl combine ½ cup chili powder, 1/4 cup sweet or smoked paprika and 2 tablespoons each garlic powder, onion powder and salt. Stir. Keep tightly lidded in a cool place. Starting small, stir into chili to taste and simmer to let flavors blend, then add more if needed. * Homemade mixes and blends save space and weight for camping. They also give you control over amounts and ingredients. Reduce salt, omit sugar or MSG, go all organic or non-GMO. Buy ingredients in bulk to save $. Package the mixes in amounts sized according to your needs from dinner-for-two to the Brady Bunch. Don't forget to label with instructions for completing the dish when you get to camp.
Campground Potluck Recipe of the Week Green ‘n Gold Salad Packers fans will love the colors. Everyone loves a colorful, crunchy, refreshing salad side dih.
2 cans whole kernel corn 2 European-style unwaxed cucumbers Small jar diced pimento, drained 1/3 cup each sugar, vegetable oil and fresh lemon juice
Drain corn and put in a large bowl. Cut unpeeled cucumbers lengthwise in long strings, then slice strings into bits just a little larger than corn kernels. Stir in pimento. In a small jar, shake sugar, oil and lemon juice to dissolve sugar. Stir into vegetables and chill. Stir. Serve with a slotted spoon. Serves 10-12. Cook’s note: If you’re using regular cucumbers, peel if they are waxed and strip out any excess seeds.
Freeze-Ahead Recipe of the Week Breakfast Taco Filling
2 pounds bulk chicken or pork sausage with sage 1 tablespoon vegetable oil 1 to 2 cups trimmed, finely chopped kale (optional) 12 eggs 1 teaspoon each salt, pepper, ground cumin, smoked paprika
In a large skillet fry out sausage, breaking it up in hot oil. Gradually stir in kale until it's limp. When sausage is thoroughly cooked whisk eggs and seasoning and pour over sausage. Stir until eggs are just set. Do not over-cook. Cool and package for the freezer, allowing about 2/3 cupful per serving. To serve, thaw and heat in a nonstick skillet. Spoon into corn or flour tortillas with your choice of "taco-ndiments" such as sour cream, shredded lettuce, grated cheese, salsa, chopped tomato, etc. Filling can also be frozen in boilage bags. Reheat in hot water.
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Camping and RV Recipe of the Week Icebox Pistachio Pie 1 store-bought graham cracker crust 1/3 cup chopped pistachio nuts 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened to “room” temperature 1 1/4 cups milk
1 packet instant pistachio pudding mix 8-ounce tub of whipped topping
Scatter nuts (or save some for a garnish later) in the crust and put crust in the refrigerator or ice chest to chill. Thoroughly mix milk and cream cheese using a whisk, egg beater or hand mixer. Add pudding mix. When it begins to set, fold in half of the whipped topping. Put in the crust and chill an hour or more. Top with remaining whipped topping and reserved pistachios. This is best served the same day.
No refrigerator? It’s OK to carry whipped topping in a well-chilled ice chest for two or three days.
Great gift idea for Mother's Day! Best cookbook for shortcuts when cooking in a camper or RV. Cooking Aboard Your RV has more than 200 delicious recipes that save space, time, water, hassle and mess when you're on the go. Order in paperback or Kindle. http://amzn.to/1NdWI4o
Campground Potluck Recipe of the Week Crunchy Cornbread Salad This recipe is a sweet, corny twist on the Italian bread salad, Panzanella. If you can’t find cornbread croutons, make a batch of cornbread, crumble it, spread on a baking sheet and bake at 400 degrees until it’s toasty.
1 bunch scallions, trimmed and sliced 2 or 3 ribs celery, sliced 3 or 4 plum tomatoes, diced 1 green sweet pepper, seeded and diced 1 sweet red pepper, seeded and diced Large head lettuce, cut in bite size Bottle vinaigrette 1 package cornbread croutons 1 bag Fritos corn chips
In a large bowl toss vegetables with vinaigrette to taste. Immediately before serving, toss with cornbread or croutons and corn chips.
Tips for the Camp Cook
* Make twice as many sandwiches as you need . Cut leftovers to fit in a skillet or casserole. Whisk eggs and milk to cover and soak sandwiches. Cook until eggs set.
* I often recommend putting dry ingredients in a bag as an easy way to combine them without using an extra bowl. When making large quantities of, say, gorp or parmesan popcorn, you need a BIG, big plastic bag. Just a reminder NOT to use a scented garbage bag.
* Dump Soup: fry out a pound of ground beef, turkey or sausage and dump in 1 can each mixed vegetables, diced tomatoes, chicken gumbo soup, whole kernel corn, Rotel tomatoes and black beans. Simmer. If it’s too thick add broth, water or tomato juice. Serve as is or ladle over split biscuits. I recommend low-sodium canned foods, then salt and pepper to taste.
* On the way to the campground pick up Subway chopped salads to go. Hold the dressing. In camp, add drained and rinsed garbanzos or black beans, dressing of your choice and dinner is served.
Freeze-Ahead Recipe of the Week Mustard Glazed Meatballs
2 pounds lean ground beef 1 pound lean ground pork ½ cup bread crumbs 2 beaten eggs 1 teaspoon each salt, pepper, mixed Italian seasoning
Mix well and form into golf ball-size meatballs. Arrange on a rimmed baking sheet and bake at 425 degrees until browned. Internal temperature should reach 160 degrees. Set aside to cool.
Glaze: Up to 1/3 cup pan juices 16-ounce jar apricot or pineapple preserves 8-ounce jar Grey Poupon mustard 1 teaspoon curry powder 1 cup brown sugar 20-ounce can crushed pineapple
Drain pan juices from the meatballs into a saucepan and add preserves, mustard, curry powder, brown sugar and undrained pineapple. Bring to a boil to dissolve sugar. Remove from heat and cool. Put meatballs in freezer bags, alowing 3 to 4 meatballs per adult serving. Divide sauce appropriately among bags. Freeze. Thaw, heat and serve over rice or noodles. Also good with crisp Chinese noodles from a package.
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Camp and RV Recipe of the Week
No-Crust Pizza Have all the great taste of pizza without the mega-carbs. With or without an oven, try this maxi-meaty main dish for your pizza-loving camping family.
1 egg Small can mushroom pieces, drained 1/3 cup minute oatmeal 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning 1 pound lean ground beef Pizza sauce Your favorite pizza toppings such as pepperoni, mushrooms, peppers, onions, black olives Shredded mozzarella cheese
Put the egg in a large freezer bag and squeeze the bag to break up the egg. Add water to juice from the mushrooms to make ½ cup liquid. Add it to the bag with the mushrooms, oats, and Italian seasoning. Squeeze bag to mix. Let stand 10 minutes to soften oats. Add ground beef and keep squeezing the bag until everything is well mixed. Strip this out of the bag into a 12-inch greased skillet. Spread mixture in an even layer on the bottom and up the sides enough to form a rim that will hold the pizza toppings. Spread with pizza sauce. Arrange pepperoni slices around the edge. Cover tightly and cook over low-medium heat 30-40 minutes. Beef should be done to a minimum of 160 degrees and browned on bottom and sides. Top with grated mozzarella and cover over low heat until cheese melts. Cut in wedges. Serves 6.
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Campground Potluck Recipe of the Week
Fruit and Nut Bread Pudding Square sandwich bread is the easiest loaf to dice evenly. Just stack several slices and slice one way, then the other. This dessert is dotted with little jewels of flavor in different colors and flavors.
1 loaf stale sandwich bread ½ cup each raisins, snipped apricots, dried cranberries, chopped pecans, chopped and drained maraschino cherries Small can crushed pineapple ½ cup brown sugar 1 teaspoon cinnamon 12-ounce can sweetened condensed milk 13-ounce can evaporated milk Water 4 eggs ½ stick butter, in small pieces
Oven method: Butter a large aluminum foil baking pan and set the oven for 350 degrees. Drain pineapple, saving juice. Scatter bread, fruit, nuts, sugar and cinnamon in the pan. Add water and pineapple juice to condensed and evaporated milk to make 3 ½ cups total liquid. In a bowl whisk milk mixture and eggs. Pour mixture slowly over pan, allowing it to soak in. Press floating bread gently down into the liquid until liquid is absorbed. Dot with butter. At this point, bake it or cover and chill. Bake at 350 degrees about 50 minutes or until top is golden and center is “set” as for custard. Baking time will be longer if pudding was chilled. Serve warm, at “room” temperature or chilled. Serve with a spoon or ice cream scoop. Serves 12-16. Stove-top method: Butter a large kettle, Dutch oven or large, deep skillet. Proceed as above. Cover and cook over low-medium heat until it’s set as for custard.
Tips for the Camp Cook
* Lightweight and compact, this handsome 1.2 liter air fryer lets you have small batches of fried foods in less time, with less oil. It’s small enough to tuck into an RV cupboard or your camping grub box.
*Stir up bread pudding with your favorite recipe. Then line a skillet with pineapple rings and top with pudding. Cover and cook over low-medium heat until it’s set. Turn out of the pan like upside down cake.
* Cover two burners at once on your camp stove or RV range to make lots of pancakes, burgers, eggs or toasted sandwiches with this nonstick griddle.
* Still the best campfire meal for fussy eaters, dieters and people who have allergies. Give everyone their own non-stick pie iron to make a sandwich any way, your way or their way.
* Another tip for serving bread pudding. Make it with eggs, bread and milk but without sugar. Instead, season with herbs and garlic and serve as a savory starch course with meat from the grill.
Freeze-Ahead Recipe of the Week Chicken ‘n Chipped Beef
4 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast 2 to 3 cups sliced fresh mushrooms 1 tablespoon each powdered chicken bouillon and mixed Italian seasoning 2 tablespoons vegetable oil 1 jar dried chipped beef, cut up Family-size can cream of chicken soup OR 2 regular cans cream of chicken soup ½ cup cooking sherry
Cut up chicken into bite size. Heat oil and stir-fry chicken bits and mushrooms to brown them. Sprinkle with powdered bouillon and Italian seasoning and keep stir-frying while adding dried beef. In a bowl, whisk condensed soup and sherry. Add to chicken mixture, cover and simmer until chicken is done (170 degrees). Cool, stir and package for the freezer, allowing 2/3 to 1 cup per serving. Thaw, heat and serve with a campfire-baked potato.
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Camp and RV Recipe of the Week No Bake Coconut Pudding Cake
2 plain pound cakes, 12 ounces each 12-ounce can evaporated milk 1 ½ cups sugar ½ stick of butter 1 ½ cups flaked coconut 1 teaspoon vanilla, coconut or almond extract
Slice the cakes about two inches thick and arrange tightly to fill sprayed 9 X 13-inch pan. Reserve any excess cake for another use. Bring the milk and sugar to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in butter to melt it, then the coconut and extract. Spoon hot mixture slowly over the cake, allowing it to soak in. Let stand until cool. Serve with a spoon.
Campground Potluck Recipe of the Week Hammy Pumpkin Pancakes
Have a potluck breakfast at the campground and win raves with these buttery pancakes. It’s fun to set up a cooking station and an assembly line to keep these flapjacks coming. Let others bring accompaniments such as hot and cold beverages, sausage, bacon, fruit and imaginative toppings for the pancakes.
4 eggs 2 cans, 15 ounces each, pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling) 1 or 2 cans chunk ham 2 cups white flour 2 cups whole wheat flour 2 cups minute oatmeal ½ cup sugar 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder ½ teaspoon baking soda 1 tablespoon cinnamon Milk or water to make batter Oil for the griddle Cinnamon applesauce for serving
In a large bowl whisk eggs. Add pumpkin and ham, breaking up the ham as you go. Put dry ingredients in a bag and jostle to mix. Dump into the pumpkin mixture. Add milk or water to make a batter as thick as heavy cream. Lightly oil a griddle. Cook batter like pancakes. Serve with buckets of warm cinnamon applesauce. Serves 8 to 10.
For boondocking and emergencies, see the Pantry Recipe of the Week, using only shelf-stable ingredients, no fresh foods required, at BoatCook.
Tips for the Camp Chef *Save money and time when you make fish tacos with fish sticks. Thaw, then heat in a big skillet with a little vegetable oil. Put in a taco with deli cole slaw and your choice of add-ons such as pickled pepper rings, hot sauce or sliced avocado. * No bacon for your corn chowder? Cut up dried, chipped beef.
* Soudough is about as campy as you can get. Have you always wanted to master sourdough baking? Begin with a Sourdough Starter Kit. It will last a lifetime. After you get the starter going and growing, share starter with your camping neighbors and friends. * Make your egg custard or custard pie with brown sugar and it tastes like butterscotch.
* Add a bottle of Mapleine flavoring to your grub box. To save space, make pancake syrup as needed. Boil 2 cups sugar in 1 cup water, then add 1 teaspoon Mapleine.
* Be prepared for emergencies while camping and at home with shelf-stable foods that make up a balanced meal. How to stow, use, choose? How much is enough to sustain four people for three days? Two people for four days? See the Survival Food Handbook, a guide to shopping the supermarket for affordable, familiar storage foods.
Freeze-Ahead Recipe of the Week Spicy Sausage and Rice
When you make your own meals for camping it’s not just about saving money. You can fine-tune ingredients to your own preferences and diet needs such as less salt or organic or gluten free or omit the sugar. I love this kicky one-dish meal with a special local brand of sausage. Warm it in a skillet, microwave, double boiler or boilable bag. 3 pounds ground sausage 2 large onions, diced 3 to 4 large ribs of celery, diced 2 carrots, peeled and diced fine 2 ½ cups raw white rice 1 tablespoon chili powder 1 or two cans diced tomatoes plus water
In a large kettle fry out sausage, breaking it up. Gradually stir in onions, celery and carrots. Keep stirring over high heat while adding rice and chili powder. Stir to coat. Add water to the tomatoes to make 6 cups total. Bring to a boil, cover and cook over reduced heat 20 minutes or until rice is tender. Cool and measure into containers, allowing 1 ½ cups per main dish serving. Cook’s note: Sausage is salty and canned tomatoes also usually contain salt. Freeze this dish without added salt. Pass salt and the pepper grinder at the table.