Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Car Camping Barbecue-

I do a lot of camping in my truck. I use a Sportz II truck tent, and camp at least three days each week to avoid a morning commute following a night shift. I do this for safety, mine and everyone elses. I do not drive well after being up all night.

Travel is a dream for me, far more often than a reality. However, the prospect of camping to cut costs has opened up some travel ideas that I had not previously considered. Truck tent camping is not quite stealth camping. A tent in the back of a truck just stands out in a parking lot, and any camping in unauthorized locations is just plain out. Still, cost for camping often comes in much lower than motels, and any dollar saved can be used to extend the journey.

So, I think often on matters of travel and camping. I have looked at a lot of different grill options as a result. The best solution was demonstrated by Alton Brown, on his show Good Eats. In the particular episode to which I refer he was preparing to grill some lovely pieces of fresh Tuna, cut from the loin. He prepared the meat, and got his coals started in a starting chimney.

Ready to grill, he just placed a grill on top of the chimney, and grilled the Tuna right there. Brilliant! Instead of taking a starting chimney and a barbecue of some kind along, the chimney can be the whole barbecue! All that is needed is a suitable grill to place on top!

Since I have been exploring the prospects of adding dutch oven cooking to my camping repitoir, I would need a starting chimney as part of my kit. Now I have more cooking options without adding another item to my kit. The dutch oven I presently have has legs below, for cooking on coals, and legs on the lid. It can serve as a small griddle.

On the whole, a lot of travel cooking options. Now I just have to get out on the road, instead of camping in a parking lot where outdoor cooking is limited to a small propane burner and a pot or two.

I can hardly wait!


Anonymous said...

I too admire the simple ideas of a grate on top of the metal chimney and have been doing that for years when it comes time to grill steaks for just the two of us at the beach or the river.

But when I need to prepare for more than just a couple I needed something simple and easy to use, that was as practical as the grate over the chimney method. I was talking to the product guys at Char-Broil (my sponsors) one day and they smiled. Seems they had been thinking along the same lines.

They've developed a simple grate that will work as you've described as well as have multiple grates for camp fire cooking.

They've called it the Rambler and you can see it here: http://www.charbroil.com/Consumer/product_detail_m.aspx?ProductID=2312 Tell me what you think?


Michael Lockridge said...

I had a look at the Rambler, and think it is a great idea. I think I would like to add it to my gear. What a great way to camp cook!

Follow the link and have a look. If you picnic or camp, this could be just the ticket for portable barbecue.