Camping trips used to mean sacrificing tasty home cooked meals for canned food and whatever else you could carry that didn’t need to be kept cold, but thanks to portable refrigeration that’s all changed. No more ‘bully-beef, camp pie, Spam or baked beans for us’. We eat just as well when we’re camping as we do at home, but that involves some careful planning.
Most working people have a very limited amount of holiday time and if the planned trip involves driving to and from your destination, that’s even less time to fit all the fun stuff in. Planning your camping trip menu ahead will save hours grocery shopping in unfamiliar food stores and and allow you to make the most of the time you have. Keep it simple and remember to allow for ‘cooks time off’ – a meal or two at a restaurant or cafe is a great treat for the cook!
It’s not necessary to buy everything on your menu before you depart on your big trip: as storage space is often quite limited and an often over-looked consideration is the overall weight of your vehicle when fully packed, yes food adds to that! Why would you take a two kilo pack of sugar if you only need a couple of teaspoons per day? Individual sugar sachets may be a bit more expensive but are usually a much better option.
Assuming that you’re heading off on the big trip of four or more weeks, pack enough food for 7-10 days and plan to top up supplies along the way.
Some of our favourite camping foods: Spice Tailor Indian Curries – Butter Chicken, Korma, Rogan Josh, Keralan Coconut, Fiery Goan, Tikka Masala, Punjabi Tomato to name a few. The meal is made up of three ratchets: one containing dry herbs and spices, the second contains the base sauce in which you can marinate your choice of meat or chicken, the third sachet contains the main sauce. Preparation time is minimal at 10-15 minutes and each serves 2-3 people. They require only one or two extra ingredients, listed on each pack. Pre-cooked steamed rice and roti or naan bread is heated in a pan to accompany the curry. They’re delicious!
Plan out a rough menu well ahead of your intended departure date, working out how many breakfasts, lunches and dinners you’ll be catering for; here are some ideas!
|Day 1||Breakfast at home prior to departure||Ham and cheese sandwich, roll or wrap, juice or water||Fish, jacket potato with sour cream and salad|
|Day 2||Yoghurt, fruit, coffee or tea, milk, sugar||Smoked chicken and salad sprouts wrap, juice or water||Thai green curry chicken and jasmine rice.|
|Day 3||Cereal of choice, milk, sugar/honey, coffee or tea||Tuna, potato salad, boiled egg, juice or water||Pork loin chops, gravy, garlic mashed potato and peas|
|Day 4||Muffins, baked beans, butter, coffee, milk, sugar||Salami, cheese, semi-dried tomatoes, biscuits, juice||Chicken, fried potato and coleslaw|
|Day 5||Sardines on toast, tea or coffee, milk, sugar||Cup of soup, bread roll, fruit, water or juice||Camp oven roast, potatoes, pumpkin, corn, beans, gravy|
|Day 6||Muesli with yoghurt, tea or coffee, milk, sugar||Roast meat (leftover), pickles wrap, water or fruit juice||Steak, mashed potato, beans|
|Day 7||Bacon, eggs, toast, butter, tea or coffee, milk, sugar||Egg, lettuce on Lebanese bread, juice or water||Lamb fillets, beans and cous-cous|
|Day 8||Crumpets, golden syrup, tea or coffee, milk, sugar||Smoked salmon, cream cheese, capers on biscuits, juice or water||Spaghetti bolognaise, pan fried garlic bread|
|Day 9||Cereal of choice, fruit, tea or coffee, milk, sugar||BBQ chicken, coleslaw, juice or water||Butter chicken, basmati rice and roti. Mango chutney and yoghurt.|
|Day 10||Eggs and toast, butter, tea or coffee, milk, sugar||Pastrami, cheese, gherkins / pickled cucumber on biscuits, juice or water||Make this an easy meal such as a sausage and onion sizzle, toasted sandwich or a cafe meal|
Australia’s Quarantine Laws
Before you start filling your food containers and camp fridge, you should be aware of what you can take in your vehicle across state borders and into special exclusion zones.
Each State and Territory in Australia has strict quarantine laws in place to protect its agricultural industries from pests and diseases found in fruit and vegetables, honey and plant material. Before you travel interstate, into or through fruit fly exclusion zones. Avoid the purchase of banned items which you’ll have to surrender (or eat) as you approach borders, checking stations or exclusion zones, take a look at Australian Interstate Quarantine.
For further information call 1800 084 881 during business hours.