What goes along with summer fun while vacationing with family at a Texas RV Park? Great food of course! If you’ve done much camping at Texas RV parks maybe you’re already a pro at dutch oven cooking, or maybe you’ve always wanted to try your hand at it, but have been a bit too intimidated to get started.
Roger L Beattie of the Backwoods Home Magazine describes dutch ovens: “squatting heavily in dank basements, drafty attics, and dusty, cluttered garages, these three-legged hulks from a bygone era wait impatiently to release their treasures. Until then, they are pitted by time and tarnished by neglect. For those who will uncover the mystery, their gaping caverns can once again be brimming with magic.
“From the birth of our nation, Dutch ovens have been an integral and versatile part of Americana. Sadly today’s high-tech hustle-and-bustle lifestyle has all but forgotten the art of “leather-glove cuisine.” The coal-black cast iron ovens appear outdated, unfriendly, and forbidding. Interestingly however, with seven simple secrets revealed, the beginning camp cook and the consummate backyard chef can utilize these forgotten friends to produce a marvelous and unforgettable variety of succulent delicacies.”
Here is a helpful link for beginners and expert dutch oven cooks alike with Roger’s seven secrets of dutch oven cooking.
If the first thing that comes to mind when you think of dutch oven cooking is dump cake, think again! Virtually anything you can cook in the oven, on the stove top, or in the microwave can be cooked in a dutch oven. Dutch ovens are one of the most versatile pans you can own! For those that are new to the art, here is a link to some handy tips from WikiHow on how to use a dutch oven.
And for those of you who are ready for your next trip, take advantage of the RV specials here at our beautiful RV resort, a top rated Good Sam Park for 2012 and who many call the best East Texas RV Park. And while you’re doing your meal planning to decide what delicious food you’ll enjoy while you’re here, here’s a great dutch oven recipe for you to put on your menu list, Campfire Jambalaya, the grand-prize winning recipe from Scouting magazine’s national contest. Complements of Kevin Young and Jim Brown, Scoutmaster and assistant Scoutmaster of Troop 44, in Heyburn, Idaho:
1 pound boneless chicken breast, cubed
1 pound mild Italian sausage, chunked
1 pound mixed seafood (shrimp, crab, crawfish)
1/3 cup oil
1 large onion, sliced and chopped
1/2 cup celery, chopped
2 small red or green peppers, quartered and sliced
2 medium tomatoes, coarsely chopped
1 14-oz. can chicken broth
3 cups okra, sliced
2 cups mushrooms, sliced
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon white pepper
1 teaspoon gumbo filé (powdered sassafras leaves)
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup orange juice
2 to 3 cups long-grained white rice
* Option: Replace cayenne with crushed and dried hot red peppers.
Cook in a deep, 14-inch Dutch oven. Heat chicken and Italian sausage until cooked through, but not browned. In a separate pot, steam seafood mixture until done (shrimp will turn pink).
In the Dutch-oven lid or another pan, sauté onions, celery, and red or green peppers until tender. Add the sautéed mixture, along with the tomatoes, broth, okra, and mushrooms to the chicken and sausage. Mix thoroughly.
Add dry peppers, gumbo filé, and rice. Mix thoroughly.
Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Add Worcestershire sauce and orange juice. Add water as necessary to cook rice. Add steamed seafood mixture. Simmer for another 10 minutes.
Serves 8 to 10.
Texas RV Park
Mill Creek Ranch Resort
2102 N. Trade Days Blvd
Canton, Texas 75103