Nothing tastes better than a hot dog slowly roasted over the campfire. Patience is the key, and some of our family members have turned it almost into an art form. We also do our burgers, sausage, bacon, and many other meals over the campfire.
We also use the dual-burner gas stoves for eggs, pancakes, meals requiring boiling water, and just about everything else. For the Memorial Day campout, where we’re serving 35-40 people, we set up two gas stoves.
But our favorite cooking is with the dutch ovens. We have three of them and often borrow a fourth. We make eggplant parmigiana, Swiss steak, chicken in wine sauce, chuck roast, Beef Enchiladas and other family favorites. We cheat a little by using charcoal instead of digging hot coals out of the campfire. This also gives us better heat control.
In this picture we are browning cube steak as the first step in making dutch oven Swiss Steak. You can find some of our camping recipes here.
Food shopping has become easier over the years. When we first started we tried to bring all the food with us at the start of the camp-out. As the number of people has grown its easier for two of us to run to the store daily. We have our menu planned way in advance with careful attention to the challenge of cooking for 40 people.
Our campfires last all day long, with people reading, knitting, swapping stories or just relaxing. The fire never goes out. At night, it becomes more lively as everyone in the family pulls their chair around the fire (sometimes two deep) and we cook S’Mores, popcorn, baked apples, hotdogs, or mountain pie pizza’s. The songs start, and maybe a game of Jack’s Alive, or a story gets passed from person to person, or perhaps some of the kids will put on a skit.
The kids also enjoy finding hollow logs that can be made into “chimneys” with flames shooting out the top.