Outdoor food does not have to come from a plastic package! You don’t have to do without fresh food even on shorter trekking tours. We have useful tips and five great recipes that will make camping a culinary experience!
This summer we were in Canada by car and tent and of course had no chance to bring food or spices from home. However, we had our outdoor recipes with us. The kitchen consisted of the camping stove with the use of a gas cartridge and two pots (including a lid) and a pan. The cooker is a light single-flame cooker and offers the “Simmer” function, which means you can slowly cook your dishes on a low flame. Of course, you can also prepare the recipes on another stove, but the cooking times given here are designed for the use of gas.
A small cutting board, two kitchen helpers, two sharp knives including a can opener (Leatherman), a noodle strainer (which can also be used as a lid) and a vegetable peeler were still in the luggage. With these utensils you should be able to prepare the outdoor recipes below.
We did a lot of shopping at weekly markets in Banff and Jasper during our Canada road trip. In between, we have added to our stock of small shops. There are no larger cities in the national parks, but there is also a larger supermarket (Safeways) in Banff and even an organic supermarket (Robinsonfoods) in Jasper.
Our top 5 outdoor recipes
Our recipe ideas were created based on these conditions. We tried hard and wish you: good appetite!
Vegetable curry with couscous (vegan)
- 1 can of coconut milk
- Turmeric and coriander, salt, pepper, chilli
- Swiss chard (approx. 200 grams)
- 1 sweet potato
- 4 large mushrooms
- 1 small onion
- 1 bowl of couscous
- Canola oil
Sear the onion with oil and immediately add the diced sweet potato.
Chop and add the mushrooms. Pour in a can of coconut milk.
Wash the chard and cut it into strips and add it too. Season to taste. I added some quinoa (about three tablespoons) to the curry because it had to be used up urgently. Now reduce the heat, switch the stove to the lowest setting and put the lid on.
After about five minutes, remove the pot from the stove and put on half a cup of water. Bring the water to a boil and pour over the couscous. This may now finish drawing. If the couscous is not yet soft but has already absorbed the water, I continue to pour on the curry sauce.
Put the curry back on the cooker and cook until the sweet potatoes are cooked.
Spread the couscous on two bowls and pour the curry on top.
Optionally, the curry also tastes great with other vegetables: for example carrots, pak choi, melanzani (= aubergine) etc.
- 5 potatoes
- 1 onion
- 1 pack of Philadelphia peppers (approx. 200 grams)
- 200 grams of sausages
- water, bell pepper, salt, vinegar, pepper and oil
Cut the onion and potatoes into small cubes. Dice the sausages as well.
Fry the onion, add the potatoes and pour in half a cup of water. Salt well.
Put the lid on and let the potatoes cook for ten minutes. Then add the sausages and season with paprika and pepper. Add a large dash of vinegar.
Whoever has them on hand: Pickles taste really delicious in potato goulash, just dice three to four pieces into them.
Let it cook again. Pour some water on if necessary. When the potatoes soften, fold in the Philadelphia.
If Philadelphia is too hearty for you, you can simply add a little tomato paste to get a creamy sauce.
- Greek pasta pan (vegetarian)
- Aubergine (1 piece)
- zucchini (1 piece)
- Feta cheese (200 grams)
- pasta (220 grams)
- onion, oregano, thyme, salt, pepper, garlic
Chop the onion and sauté, cut the aubergine and zucchini into small pieces and add.
Pour in a little water and let simmer. Cut the feta into cubes. Take the first pot off the stove and cover with the lid. Then fill a second saucepan with water and cook the pasta.
After five minutes, remove the pasta from the cooker and put the lid on. Let it cook away from the stove.
Put the first saucepan with the ragout back on the stove and add the diced feta. Continue to simmer on a low flame until the noodles are cooked.
Then drain the pasta and mix with the sauce and serve.
- Eggless pancakes (vegan)
- 160 grams of flour (wheat flour, type W480) (approx. 1.5 cups)
- 300 ml soy milk / almond milk
- 100 ml sparkling mineral water
- 1 tbsp baking powder
- 3 tablespoons of sugar and 1 tablespoon of salt
- Possibly. 1 tbsp vanilla sugar
Mix the ingredients (except the mineral water), stir the dough until smooth and then add the mineral water. Let it steep for ten minutes.
Now heat some oil in a pan and fry the pancakes. The dough should run apart very easily, but basically have a creamy, firm consistency. If not, add some flour.
If the pancakes get small holes on the top, they are ready to be turned.
Bake on the other side and serve. They taste great with jam, Nutella or maple syrup.
The information refers to my experience with W480 flour, another type of flour can possibly lead to the fact that you have to use more or less of it.
- Bannock bread with bacon and sour cream (also as a vegan version)
- 2 cups of flour
- 1 cup of water
- 1 bag of baking soda
- 250g bacon
- 4 tablespoons sour cream, 2 tomatoes, 2 radishes
If you leave out bacon and cream or replace it with soy yoghurt, you get a vegan dish. But we still had bacon to cook, so it was diced. The preparation is simple:
Mix ingredients apart from sour cream, radishes and tomatoes. Divide the dough and form two balls. Press them flat and pull them out to form a kind of flatbread. Then fry in the pan from both sides. I didn’t use oil in the coated pan and it worked great. You should expect around five minutes of cooking time per side of bread.
Spread the finished bannock with two tablespoons of sour cream and top with radishes and tomatoes.
Tip for trekking tours: portion the ingredients for the dough into freezer bags for transport, then add the water before preparing.
Tips and tricks for the outdoor kitchen
How do I cook on the single flame cooker?
It actually cooks on the gas stove just like on a gas stove, with the limitation that you only have one plate available. Cooking noodles in hot water by itself, that is, I usually boiled the noodles for five minutes and then set the pot aside and let them finish cooking while I was preparing the sauce on the stove. Since pasta cooks at different speeds, you have to try every now and then to see if they are al dente.
Can I prepare all outdoor recipes on the stove?
Basically, when camping, you can of course cook everything you can cook at home on the stove! However, keep in mind that the cooking time of individual foods is different. The longer a food takes to prepare, the more fuel is wasted. Cereals such as couscous are ideal as a side dish, as they can simply swell with hot water away from the cooker while you conjure up a quick curry on the cooker, for example. You can get instant couscous in any supermarket.
Stews are generally a fine thing on a camping stove and since there are delicious local sweet potatoes everywhere in Canada, and fresh vegetables are available in abundance in well-stocked supermarkets, we have eaten curries very often. You can find the recipe below.
Cooling and transportation of food
Due to the lack of possibility to cool our purchases sufficiently (it was sometimes 35 degrees Celsius), we tried to tailor our outdoor recipes to durable foods. So there was almond milk and coconut milk instead of cow’s milk, pancakes without egg, and we bought meat, if at all, fresh before grilling. Since zucchini, potatoes and many other vegetables can be safely stored for several days without refrigeration, we have been very healthy and very often vegan.
Alternatively, you can purchase a small cool box (available in the supermarket in Canada for $ 20 to $ 30), in which feta or sausages can then be chilled for a day.
Since we were traveling by car, the transportation of food was not a problem. The portioning of ingredients in small freezer bags is ideal for trekking tours, so there is nothing standing in the way of a freshly baked bread, even far from civilization (see last recipe).