[Sca-cooks] Camping food

Stefan li Rous StefanliRous at austin.rr.com
Wed Jan 20 16:28:51 PST 2010

Christianna inghean Fearghus asked a number of questions about food  
while camping at Gulf Wars.

We will, and have had, similar problems as you. Even about the same  
amount of driving time (about 12 hours), except you will be taking the  
northern route (I-20) and we coming from Bryn Gwlad will be taking the  
southern route (I-10/I-12).

"Can anyone recommend sources, cookbooks, etc.
for good camp meals or recipes, both period
and non period, that would work well with either a small propane
stove or even the boil in a bag seal a meal type stews and stuff? "

When it was just my wife and myself, we used a propane stove since we  
didn't want to spent all of our time cooking and we both had lots of  
other activities we were involved with. She usually works about 60  
hours on privy patrol and waterbearing, not at the same time, and I  
teach several classes.  She would cook up a weeks worth of simple  
stews and soups for dinner, freeze them and then it was a simple  
matter to pull one out and melt and boil it on the stove. And if it  
was rainy, it could be done with care within the pavilion. It's a  
large 17 x 17 ft pavilion so the CO problem was minimized.

We would buy ice periodically from the camp store for the ice chests.  
We kept one ice chest for drinks and such and the other for the frozen  
foods and that last one was not opened very much. A quilt on top as  
well as keeping it in the tent will help keep the ice from melting so  
fast. Here's a Florilegium file in the SCA-CAMPING section on ice  

ice-chests-msg    (12K)  7/21/07    Using ice chests at SCA events.  

The boil-in bags have been discussed off and on on this list and after  
hearing good things about them, I finally started trolling ebay and  
ended up a few weeks ago with one of the newest units, but like yours,  
this one came without directions. I managed to find directions in PDF  
format on the web. The format for them was strange, two pages, each of  
what looks to be four manual pages each but it should fill in what  
I've not known even if it is hard to read.

For more on using boil-in bags or even regular plastic bags see this  
file in the FOOD section of the Florilegium:

bag-cooking-msg   (50K)  4/25/08  Using plastic bags to warm pre- 
cooked foods
                                      at SCA events. Vacuum food  

For bread at Gulf Wars we would just plan on buying a second loaf at  
the camp store or pick some up on a trip into town, either at the  
beginning of Gulf Wars or later. If you only need a few items and  
someone else is already going into town in your camp, you can often  
just have them pick up those items for you.

For breakfasts and lunches we would usually just have some items that  
could be eaten as is, from the store-bought packages. Or juice or milk  
from the ice chest.

We usually do eat one meal at the food courts. We used to pack up on  
Saturday and leave right after Grand Court on Saturday night. Since  
everything was packed we would grab dinner before Grand Court at the  
food court, usually Gyros at the Greek place.

On the way in to Gulf Wars, we usually hit the site just as it is  
opening or just after it and we go by the Shoney's an hour south of  
the site for a final, all-you-can-eat mundane breakfast before the  
week of camp food.  We often see other SCA folks in there doing the  
same thing. Even in mundane clothes, it is often easy to spot the SCA  
folks. Not to mention the cars, trucks and trailers with shields and/ 
or bristling with pole arms and spears like porcupines.

Here are some more files in the FOOD section of the Florilegium with  
more camp food ideas.
breakfast-msg    (106K) 12/18/09  What's for breakfast? SCA and period.
Camp-Cooking-art   (8K) 12/ 4/00  "Camp Cooking" by Lady Caointiarn.
M-Camp-Cookng-art (11K) 10/ 2/01  "More Camp Cooking" by Lady  
                                      Some simple one-pot meals.
campfood-msg      (84K)  3/ 3/99  Non-refrig., period food for camping  

Camp foods if you freeze them and many soups will be eaten by those  
adverse to some medieval foods.
onion-soups-msg   (38K)  1/31/08  Period onion soups.
soup-msg         (110K)  9/26/09  Medieval soups. Cooking soups at  

Same for stews. This one is in the FOOD-MEATS section.
stews-bruets-msg  (82K)  7/22/06  Period stews and bruets. Recipes.

I hope this gives you some ideas.

Drop by and say hello. I'll be camping with my barony of Bryn Gwlad.  
Usually across the street from the Ansteorra gate, but that may change  
since we have a northern Ansteorra king this year. My banner, which  
you see on the Florilegium, should be hanging outside our pavilion.

If things go as I'd like, I will also be teaching my class on the  
Florilegium on Wednesday and Friday in the class tents and my hands-on  
pewter casting class on Tuesday and Thursday mornings and afternoons  
in the Artisan's Row area.

There have been times that we tried to have an SCA Cook's get- 
together, but last time we tried that there wasn't much interest. But  
if there is interest it could be done.

THLord Stefan li Rous    Barony of Bryn Gwlad    Kingdom of Ansteorra
    Mark S. Harris           Austin, Texas          StefanliRous at austin.rr.com
**** See Stefan's Florilegium files at:  http://www.florilegium.org ****

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