Fire! Nom nom nom.
August 5, 2012 7:55 PM   Subscribe

What is your favourite car camping, open fire, simple to prepare food appropriate for kids? Besides hamburgers, hot dogs and chili?

We've got a cast iron dutch oven, frying pan and a boil stuff pot. We're already planning bannock and dump cake. Previously
posted by Mitheral to Food & Drink (23 answers total) 32 users marked this as a favorite
What you need is something called a "pie iron". Among other things, it will permit you to make grilled cheese sandwiches on your campfire.

But it's also tasty using peanut butter and jam instead of cheese for the filling, or applesauce, or any of a number of other things.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 8:01 PM on August 5, 2012 [9 favorites]

Chicken, diced potatoes, diced vegetables, with a little water (use a couple of ice cubes) - rolled up in aluminum foil (crease the edges) and cooked over a campfire.
posted by yclipse at 8:10 PM on August 5, 2012 [2 favorites]

When I still ate eggs/cheese, I used to like "ziploc bag omelettes". You need eggs, ziploc bags, cheese, and whatever else you like in your omelettes (diced green onions, ham, bacon, mushrooms, tomatoes - all good).

Break 2-3 eggs per person into the bag, add the extras, close. Mush it around to mix it up, then toss the bags in a pot of boiling water until cooked through.

Fish out, open bag, dump on plate. Super tasty, very little clean up, and if you have picky eaters, everyone gets what they want.
posted by dotgirl at 8:22 PM on August 5, 2012 [2 favorites]

Camp cobblers are a perennial hit for dessert.
posted by jquinby at 8:30 PM on August 5, 2012

Similar to yclipse's suggestion are foil fajitas (chicken, but peppers and onion with seasonings).
posted by katyh at 8:36 PM on August 5, 2012

Tin Foil Dinners, all the prep work is done at home. Chicken Cordon Bleu is my favorite, I precook everything so all you're doing in the fire is re-heating.
posted by zinon at 8:40 PM on August 5, 2012 [2 favorites]

Pasta- you can make the sauce at home if you want. Boil water, drain, heat, serve, etc. Every one sleeps warm & toasty.
posted by TDIpod at 8:43 PM on August 5, 2012

Fall camping is just around the corner. Here's my favorite recipe from the NOLS Cookbook. The book is well worth the $8.00. The food is universally simple, tasty, and accessible to kids, requiring minimal at-site involvement if need be.

Potato Cheese Soup
Prep directions before you leave for camping:
2 bags.
1. Potato Spuds (dehydrated potato flakes) + Powdered Milk + Onion Powder + Garlic Powder + Salt + Cayenne Pepper in one bag
2. Shredded Cheese in the other bag.

Bring a pot of water to boil, turn to simmer, dump in the spuds+milk bag, stir and simmer 4 minutes. Add shredded cheese - stir for 2 more minutes

amazingly you now have a passable soup that is great with bread.
posted by Nanukthedog at 9:10 PM on August 5, 2012

Since you have a Dutch Oven that opens up all sorts of possibilities! For smaller people you can do all sorts of things like pizza, breakfast casserole, cakes, cobblers, etc.

Some recipes for Dutch Ovens are a little more advanced than normal fire cooking, but if you want to try it, there are plenty of websites devoted to it and also many cookbooks for sale. I'd suggest starting out using the Dutch Oven mainly for a dessert (so if you mess up, you still had your main dinner!) than after a few more camping trips use it for the main course.
posted by Deflagro at 9:22 PM on August 5, 2012

That should read "For smaller groups of people" not "smaller people"...
posted by Deflagro at 9:23 PM on August 5, 2012

Kraft Dinner, obviously.
posted by klanawa at 9:36 PM on August 5, 2012

Iron on campfire is the perfect temperature for pancakes.
posted by rhizome at 10:22 PM on August 5, 2012

To expand on klanawa's idea: slumgullion. Bring some pre-browned beef and it's super easy.

Also, s'mores!
posted by vorfeed at 11:33 PM on August 5, 2012

Bread on a stick.
posted by travelwithcats at 3:32 AM on August 6, 2012

We like to do tacos on our first night - we'll usually prep everything ahead of time (shred cheese and lettuce, dice tomatoes, and make up a spice mix for the meat) and then once the tents are up and the fire is going all that really needs to be done is cook the meat.
posted by backseatpilot at 5:05 AM on August 6, 2012

When I was a kid I was taken on a youth camping trip. For dinner they made chicken soup over a campfire, adding in an equivalent amount of rice while it simmered. It was the most delicious thing I'd ever tasted.
posted by L'Estrange Fruit at 5:32 AM on August 6, 2012

How about hanging steaks off of toasting forks. Easy to clean, yummy as hell, and as fun as toasting weeines, but, you know, steak.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 6:19 AM on August 6, 2012

posted by pracowity at 8:25 AM on August 6, 2012

Best answer: Smoky orange poached egg
Cut an orange in half. Keeping the rind intact, eat (or discard) the flesh. Crack an egg; deposit white & yolk into orange rind. Replace top half of sphere & wrap in tin foil. Place in fire. Wait 10-20 minutes. Unwrap. Check for doneness. Eat. Marvel.
posted by feral_goldfish at 8:36 AM on August 6, 2012 [1 favorite]

Beanie Weenie Casserole, yum!
posted by exphysicist345 at 3:56 PM on August 6, 2012

OK, a few more for the Dutch oven:

Swamp Pizza/Pasta. The ingredients are in this thread, but it's also in the Scouts Outdoor Cookbook. You're basically layering the ingredients and cooking, so make sure to bring charcoal briquets along for the lid.

Lodge also has a Dutch oven cookbook which has all sorts of things, including the best cobbler in all creation: Pumpkin Pie Cobbler, the recipe for which you can find here. This one has won contests whenever troops and packs get together around here.

On a recent canoe trip, we used the dutch oven to do a salisbury steak in mushroom gravy dish: grilled hamburger patties and cream of mushroom soup, combined in the DO. I wasn't involved in the prep, but it was pretty basic and very tasty, though a day of paddling probably helped out a bit. There are more recipes along these lines here.

Breakfast casseroles are also a cinch in the Dutch oven and can easily feed a decent sized group. The key to most recipes is the charcoal briquet count. So many for the bottom, so many for the top. Bring your chimney starter or (gag) lighter fluid, get the coals starting while you're prepping, clear an area so no one will fall on the damn thing and you're good to go.

Don't forget to bring something to lift the lid for checking progress or serving. Pliers, or a bent rod of some kind. Glove are a must, too. They make DO liners which can help tremendously when it's time for clean up. I've also just built the campfire up and turned it upside down in the flames to cook off any final residue.
posted by jquinby at 5:15 PM on August 6, 2012

Banana boats are pretty great. Take as many bananas as you have people and cut a slit along the inside curve. Stuff chocolate chips and marshmallows in between the skin and the banana. Wrap the whole deal in aluminum foil and put in the coals of a fire for, oh, five minutes.

posted by punchtothehead at 1:04 PM on August 10, 2012

Response by poster: Well I asked this question a little late so I didn't actually get to try out anything except the "Smoky orange poached egg", which is bloody brilliant, due to lack of prep time. Our experiments in dutch oven cooking convinced us we need practice with heat control (and a hook to pop the hot lid off).

I'll definitely be trying the other suggestions in the future.
posted by Mitheral at 9:58 PM on August 11, 2012

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