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building the oven

building the oven

On Sunday our family celebrated Canadian Thanksgiving, albeit a day early, in Algonquin Provincial Park. Believe it or not, we cooked two turkey breasts in an oven that was made out of a cardboard box lined with foil. Instructions on this are in my wilderness cookbook, A Fork in the Trail, in a small chapter related to campground and base camping.

While Bryan, my darling husband, built the oven I prepared homemade cranberry sauce using fresh cranberries, valencia orange juice, black pepper and sugar. I also made stuffing which consisted of Calabrese style Italian bread, diced/cooked Oktoberfest sausage, onions, apples, crimini mushrooms, salt, pepper and sage. Oh and butter too. I baked this in something called an Outback Oven which is a camp oven for backpackers.

the finished product

the finished product

I put bits of butter and rubbed sage under the skin of the turkey breasts and placed them in an oven bag and then in a pan. This got placed on the rack we suspended inside the oven. The cardboard box oven ran at 350ºF.

How?

Well you preheat 10 charcoal briquettes in a campfire for 15 minutes and then place them in a pie tin at the bottom of the box. The pie tin has to be sitting up on a few rocks so the air circulates. It is pretty accurate but to maintain the temperature you have to replace the charcoal every hour.

It worked out really well. We also roasted sweet potatoes, baby carrots and baby yellow potatoes over the campfire. I forgot to turn the potatoes so, as you can see from the photo, some of the skins were a little dark.

I also received some big news on the weekend from my publisher. The proposal for my second book, Another Fork in the Trail, has been officially accepted. The trail cookbook will be on the shelves in Spring 2011.

You have probably noticed that I have been a little scarce around the craveable blog lately. So many things have been going on including a few camping trips, working on the second wilderness cookbook, client work and getting my son settled in the back-to-school routine.

My current trail cookbook, A Fork in the Trail, is doing well and I have been doing signings, interviews, demonstrations and such for that.

Now that I have a little more time I can get back to experimenting in the kitchen. Over the next few weeks I’ll be creating some new recipes to share with you and resurrecting some old family favorites.

bamboo rice & red quinoa

bamboo rice & red quinoa

I love it when the mail-lady comes to my door with a parcel. Often times it is gear to review for our website Outdoor Adventure Canada or copies of newspapers and magazines that my cookbook has been reviewed in. Then there are days like today where the parcel is some unusual ingredient that I have purchased online last Thursday. Talk about speedy delivery!

Today’s ingredients arrived from a company called Shalit Foods who is a Canadian distributor for Indian Harvest. I am very impressed with the ease of ordering and the delivery time.

I ordered 2 pounds of red quinoa (pronounced keen-wa) which is often more difficult to find than the more traditional white quinoa. I also ordered 2 pounds of bamboo infused rice. The bamboo rice is a really pretty shade of pale green.

I plan to use these ingredients to create some new dishes for my second backcountry cookbook and for the mainstream cookbook I am working on. I might even have to share a few sneak peeks on Craveable.