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Old 12th March 2011, 13:33   #1
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Default Cooking at camps/wild destinations

I was just watching "Aaha enna rusi" on Sun TV. It is a slightly different cooking show. The chef takes all the ingredients, utensils, a small gas stove & cylinder to a wild/remote location, does the whole cooking there in the freshness of nature and enjoys it there. Watching him do that brings out the wild side (the bhpian) in me, the traveler in me, and makes me say "I wanna do that too!"

Anyone have any experience with cooking and eating at wild locations?

First, a few things to be sorted out:
1. Carrying a cylinder in the car - is it allowed? Is it safe?
2. The location itself! - most good places are probably either private/govt tourist spots, or owned by forest department. No one is going to allow anyone to cook there. Maybe, for the TV show they paid a lot and took special permissions.
3. Cleaning up the utensils afterward - may not be possible, and even if there is a water source we will be polluting the place by cleaning vessels there.
4. Disposing of waste
5. Safety in remote locations

As my boss always says, "don't come to me with just problems. Come with potential solutions too." So a few thoughts around that:
1. Are there any super-safe travel-proof gas cylinders?
2. If not, any alternative fuel? Solar?
3. Remote locations which look good but forest dept doesnt care about? (unfortunately I'm not familiar with any). How about remote beaches?
4. Don't clean vessels there! Plan the cooking so that the no of vessels is kept to a minimum. Put them in plastic bags and put them into the boot so that they can be washed later.
5. Similarly collect waste and dispose at a proper place.
6. Go in groups of at least six or eight people so that safety doesn't become such a big issue.

Maybe one option to make it easier would be to do part of the cooking at home, and do only the final part in the picnic spot? (eg. all the vegetable cutting, boiling etc can be done before we start, so that we can do only the frying / chappatis / rice boiling at the spot).

Veteran travelers, any experience / suggestions along these lines? Any ideal locations, and do's & don'ts? Will the whole thing be worth all the work?
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Old 12th March 2011, 15:26   #2
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Default Re: Cooking at camps/wild destinations

Here's a related thread : What stove for the wilderness? (Cooking in the wilderness, what kind of stove?)
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Old 12th March 2011, 16:36   #3
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Default Re: Cooking at camps/wild destinations

We were once asked to cook as a part of our outbound training, in the middle of a forest.

Raw materials (Veggies, oil, spices and condiments) and vessels were given.

We used few bricks/stones to mount the vessels and twigs/stray wood lying around as fuel for the stove.

I feel a kerosene stove would be safer to carry around in a car, than a LPG cylinder!
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Old 12th March 2011, 23:45   #4
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Default Re: Cooking at camps/wild destinations

Thanks GTO & DRIV3R. Looks like kerosene or small LPG cylinder is the best option.

Now to find destinations
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Old 14th March 2011, 17:32   #5
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Default Re: Cooking at camps/wild destinations

Quote:
Originally Posted by rajushank84 View Post
Watching him do that brings out the wild side (the bhpian) in me, the traveler in me, and makes me say "I wanna do that too!"

Anyone have any experience with cooking and eating at wild locations?

First, a few things to be sorted out:
1. Carrying a cylinder in the car - is it allowed? Is it safe?
2. The location itself! - most good places are probably either private/govt tourist spots, or owned by forest department. No one is going to allow anyone to cook there. Maybe, for the TV show they paid a lot and took special permissions.
3. Cleaning up the utensils afterward - may not be possible, and even if there is a water source we will be polluting the place by cleaning vessels there.
4. Disposing of waste
5. Safety in remote locations
1. Best option for wilderness cooking is kerosene as it is relatively safer to carry.

2. If you are on an outbound excursion into hills, etc - world is your playground. Only exception may be private and government lodges. So, feel free to perch near a river or a flat area.

3. Carry as much disposable stuff as possible and reuse utensils for multipurpose tasks like we tend to use the cooking utensil for serving or even eating!

Do take care that you carry all disposable material with you after eating and dispose it suitably. River washing is fine as long as water is flowing nicely and not stagnant.

Contrary to some people's belief, washing food utensils in river is a good thing as it provides food to organism under the water. Do not use soap/detergent though. Just remove food particles using water and leave the utensils to be cleaned properly once you reach your destination.

4. Veggie waste can safely be disposed by digging a pit as it is bio-degradable and good for nature. Avoid carrying stuff in plastics and maybe transfer it into paper bags / re-usable picnic baskets to avoid clutter. Do ensure that you carry every bit of plastic back home.

5. Wilderness excursions are best enjoyed in company of friends and it is the best way forward as far as safety is concerned. Secondly, Avoid cooking in late evenings and night. Always prepare your food in daylight not just for safety but also to avoid insects, etc. that may end up gatecrashing your party.

Also ensure enough light (Fire, torches) and sound (not too much or you will disturb the real inhabitants of wilderness).

HAPPY COOKING !
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Old 14th March 2011, 19:21   #6
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Default Re: Cooking at camps/wild destinations

Quote:
Originally Posted by akhilesh51 View Post
1. Best option for wilderness cooking is kerosene as it is relatively safer to carry.

2. If you are on an outbound excursion into hills, etc - world is your playground. Only exception may be private and government lodges. So, feel free to perch near a river or a flat area.




Contrary to some people's belief, washing food utensils in river is a good thing as it provides food to organism under the water. Do not use soap/detergent though. Just remove food particles using water and leave the utensils to be cleaned properly once you reach your destination.


Also ensure enough light (Fire, torches) and sound (not too much or you will disturb the real inhabitants of wilderness).

HAPPY COOKING !
Also remember lighting firewood in in an area designated as a forest reserve is illegal.

You will be surprised how plain sand cleans utensils and makes them shine much better than modern detergents manufactured at high carbon cost!!
My personal experience is that dirt on the hands in remote forest places is safe when eating - it does not make you sick, unlike touching elevator rails or overhead slings in public transportation.

Unless you are at an ecologically damaged environment hot spot of course!

HTH

Last edited by Ragul : 14th March 2011 at 19:23.
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