Camp Cooking with Brinkley Davies
To be honest, I absolutely love cooking.
I've been vegan now for over 12 years for all the reasons—I love animals, our planet, and my health. So it was an easy effort for me to learn how to get what I need from plant-based foods, while knowing I'm being kind to my animal friends, and their habitats. In almost all cases, we aren’t in a survival situation, where adequate veggies and plant foods aren’t enough to sustain us. So I choose to not eat animal products unless I really have to one day (let's hope that day never comes on that deserted island) haha.
There are just so many delicious things you can create out of plant foods. One of the best things about camping is that veggies, canned legumes, and most plant based foods will last longer, and don’t need the refrigeration that meat or dairy products need. Eating vegan while camping is actually one of the easiest times to do it!
My go-to is a curry, because I always have a lack of cooking equipment with one or two gas burners only.
I cook rice on one burner, and then the curry on the other, I always follow a little process in my head. Depending on what I have on hand, it is pretty hard to go wrong. It is a great way to get a huge dose of nutrients from a variety of veggies, while creating a really hearty, fulfilling meal that’s easy and pretty crowd-pleasing.
Some of the Key Ingredients I use + always have are -
- Curry Powder or a jarred paste that is your favorite.
- 3-4 cloves of Garlic
- 1 x Onion
- Olive Oil
- Nutritional Yeast ( you don’t need this but it makes it extra tasty and is stacked with vitamin B12)
- A few cans of Coconut Cream or Coconut Milk - honestly cant live without it
- Canned Chickpeas
- Salt & Pepper
- White or Brown Rice
- Greens ( Usually go kale as it cooks down well and lasts good on camping trips)
- Potatoes ( or sweet potatoes if you don’t like white ones)
Depending on how many mouths you have to feed, you can just add more veggies, curry powder, and coconut cream. Just cook to taste of your preferred strength of the curry.
Method - Camping methods run a little different to usual cooking, make sure you have a good head torch, sharp knife, something to stir with, and a chopping board (or table or whatever you can find haha)
I always chop everything first so that it's ready to go. Onion and garlic are always first so get that simmering in the pan with some olive oil. Carrots, and potatoes next—as they are hard and need more time, then add paste if you have it or some curry powder. After the carrots, potatoes, onion, and garlic have had a bit of time to absorb the curry powder and be cooked a little, I'll add in a can of coconut cream + fill that same can up with water and pour it in as well. Alternatively, add in coconut milk, which already has the water mixed in. You may need to add more cans depending on how many veggies you have. Continue to taste the curry, and if it is too weak, add more curry powder or curry paste to your desired strength. I then add in everything else, other veggies, and ensure your chickpeas are drained before you add them into your curry. Stir and Cook all the ingredients together until veggies are soft and the curry flavor is how you like it, then salt and pepper, with a bit of lime is an amazing touch once it all is cooked and you can stir it through.Rice
On the side, you can rinse your rice. When camping, I'm not too fussy as you maybe won’t have ample water. In your saucepan, add 2 parts water to one part rice, pop it on the cooker with a lid on, bring to the boil. Once it's boiling, turn the cooker off, but leave the rice in the saucepan with the lid on and allow it to be there for 5-10 minutes. This allows it to absorb the water and cook to perfection. Adding a big pinch of salt adds to the flavor.
Call everyone over and dig in! I always add a huge sprinkle of nutritional yeast on mine at the end as it adds so much taste :)