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Thursday, March 8, 2012

Fire > BBQ > Oven

Even though I live in the middle of a city in the middle of the Canadian prairies, I love water and I love camping. I specifically love camping at a site that you can only reach by water (on a canoe). So, eight months into my relationship with The Boyfriend, I decide to test the waters (literally) to see if he likes my favourite and adored pastime. 

Our Bright Red Rental Canoe

We had to pack our canoe with food, shelter, clothing, and necessary supplies for three days. Problem 1: The Boyfriend is an over-packer. He leaves for a weekend? Pack the rolling suitcase. I leave for a week? Pack the gym bag with essentials. Camping is about living minimalistically... we'll get there.

Problem 2: I meant to take The Boyfriend to my favourite spot. It's a 20 minute paddle up a small creek and then a 5 minute paddle up the larger lake to the camp site. Unfortunately, this site was booked full so we had to make a 3 hour paddle with a full canoe (and with The Boyfriend being inexperienced and nervous in the front of the canoe the entire time) to our site while being passed by motorboats going full tilt.

The above pictures are what our "kitchen" looked like. My tip to you: bring an axe; bring fire starter; bring as little as you can get by with. And most importantly: bring somebody competent to cut the wood. I would cut off my own leg and bleed to death. The Boyfriend gets brownie points for 3 days of firewood.

North Saskatchewan lakes = Our Fridge

 Being gluten free while carrying your food is ridiculously simple. You won't die of starvation. You just have to be prepared.

For our first meal (not pictured), I brought up farmers sausage which I skewered on some twigs and roasted. Delicious and juicy. Boil up some quinoa and add tomatoes, and that was the best post-paddle meal ever.

Breakfasts both days were simple: hard boiled eggs, Honey Nut Chex without milk, fresh fruit, homemade granola bars (recipe provided by thebakingbeauty.com!), and a special treat of chili pepper roasted almonds.

 Some Other Meal:
Was this lunch? Was this supper?! I have no idea. But it was delicious. That's all you need to know.
  • roasted corn and veggies
  • pasta with sauce
  • tea and wine
  • toast with real butter
The meals were our favourite part of the trip and really easy to plan. I'll leave you with some tips to start planning your first camping trip, once everything defrosts:

  • Pack as lightly and as compact as possible: Choose food that is light and compact but fills your gut admirably: quinoa, rice, or maybe even pasta.
  • Just add water: bring food that only needs water and fire to prepare (and maybe some spices). This includes drinks, like tea! Tea is compact and light and realllly helps after the 3 hour canoe trip and late nights.
  • Avoid the canned goods as much as possible: I brought one or two cans, but those were painful (and The Boyfriend insisted we needed to eat Brown Beans while camping).
  • Bring fresh fruit and veggies: fresh fruit is delicious at any time, and can be roasted for dessert. Roasted or fresh veggies is a simple and nutritious addition for any meal.
  • Plan for leftovers: Leftover can be used as a component of next day's meal.

Happy Cooking!

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