Realistic cooking plans

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Realistic cooking plans

Postby VultureChow » Sun Nov 27, 2011 5:08 pm

I see a lot about having pre-made meals ready to go, and I'm wondering if my cooking plans are too "much" I'm only asking now, because it determines whether I buy a new small propane table top grill (which I just found for sale locally for a really good price) or go with a small stove.

I was planning on cooking breakfast. Eggs or pancakes.
Lunch is uncooked.
Dinner is simply grilled meat individually portioned and packaged with some grilled vegetables.

I should mention that I actually love to cook. So that's not an issue.

I'm cooking for just myself.
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby jkisha » Sun Nov 27, 2011 5:18 pm

If you love to cook, bring anything that you can keep properly chilled. I cooked gourmet meals everyday last year and had a ball doing it. Though we had a freezer and a refrigerator; so keeping things from spoiling was no problem.
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby VultureChow » Sun Nov 27, 2011 5:46 pm

jkisha wrote:If you love to cook, bring anything that you can keep properly chilled. I cooked gourmet meals everyday last year and had a ball doing it. Though we had a freezer and a refrigerator; so keeping things from spoiling was no problem.


Thanks. I'm planning a freezer cooler and an ice cooler. I figure I vacuum pack and freeze individual portions of some good steaks, lamb chops, etc. pick some veggies that will keep well and do dinner entirely grilled. The grill has a skillet insert as well, so eggs and bacon and instant pancake mix for breakfasts.

Lunch something simple. Good cheese, cured meats, olives and some of my home-canned pickled veggies.

I guess I was just nervous that I'd get there and be too tired/busy/hot/whatever to rally cook, but really I can't think of anything simpler than grilling a steak.
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby Savannah » Sun Nov 27, 2011 6:23 pm

Just bring a few mobile foods as well--jerky, Luna bars, trail mix, etc (and a canteen) so you can leave camp on an adventure. Nothing sadder than having to return to camp in the middle of some crazed event just because you're hungry.

It's also unfortunate to be spontaneously offered a meal or a drink and have to refuse because you have no cup/bowl/fork. Those are good knapsack supplies as well.
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby trilobyte » Sun Nov 27, 2011 6:34 pm

My girlfriend and I love to cook in the default world as well. But the playa poses a few challenges (for us, anyway). First, the environment. Second, it's a city with a billion and a half shiny blinky awesome things all happening at once which can make it tough to get motivated to spend a significant length of time in the camp kitchen. Third, our appetites tend to go right out the window, which can make it even tougher to get motivated. So the strategy that we find works for us is to aim for stuff that can be prepared in about 10 minutes (or less). Some things are just easy to make, others are more elaborate dishes and we've made them easy by pre-cooking. We've done both grill and camp stove in the past, and for us the grill didn't see much use and got retired. A little two burner camp stove handles all our camp's cooking needs.
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby Eric » Sun Nov 27, 2011 6:45 pm

I'm also someone who loves to cook at home but doesn't cook a damn thing on the playa (unless you count microwaving prepackaged food as cooking). If it's your first year I would plan to have enough to eat that is low maintenance (ie: quick things) as well as the items you plan on grilling etc.

You might end up realizing on the second day that you're tied to your stove more than you want to be. You might also discover that you absolutely love cooking out there. By having food for both situations your prepared for whatever happens.
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby VultureChow » Sun Nov 27, 2011 7:05 pm

Eric wrote:I'm also someone who loves to cook at home but doesn't cook a damn thing on the playa (unless you count microwaving prepackaged food as cooking). If it's your first year I would plan to have enough to eat that is low maintenance (ie: quick things) as well as the items you plan on grilling etc.

You might end up realizing on the second day that you're tied to your stove more than you want to be. You might also discover that you absolutely love cooking out there. By having food for both situations your prepared for whatever happens.



Good advice all. I don't think I want to do fully double the food, but will add a few extra quick items in so that while I'll have to cook sometimes, it won't be necessary for every dinner.
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby jkisha » Sun Nov 27, 2011 7:37 pm

yup, all of the above are true. I've had a different burn every year. Last year was my cooking burn. Next year I'll have a golf cart, so I don't expect to spend near as much time cooking. It's going to be my see everyone/everything burn.
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby junglesmacks » Sun Nov 27, 2011 7:51 pm

This + 1 skillet + 1 pot is all you really need..

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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby tamarakay » Sun Nov 27, 2011 7:54 pm

We were prepared to do both, cook and just grab and go. I love to cook, but found we didn't want to spend the time this year. We had some pre-cooked hamburger patties and pre-cooked bacon. Those were lifesavers, the taste of homemade but the convenience of packaging. We could toss a couple of frozen burgers, a couple cliff bars and an apple in a bag and take off. Also, on an impulse I bought some frozen bags of fruit in Fernley. That was my favorite thing in the heat of the day, munching on frozen peaches, mangos and strawberries. Yummy yummy.

One of the many creative people in Barbie Death Camp had liquid nitrogen and froze some grapes on occasion. Tasty tasty and refreshing. He said he liked to use them in his wine to keep it cool, but I just munched them. LIttle frozen grape balls of goodness. :D
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby Dr. Pyro » Mon Nov 28, 2011 9:04 am

tamarakay wrote:
One of the many creative people in Barbie Death Camp had liquid nitrogen and froze some grapes on occasion. Tasty tasty and refreshing. He said he liked to use them in his wine to keep it cool, but I just munched them. LIttle frozen grape balls of goodness. :D


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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby melodiousdirge » Mon Nov 28, 2011 9:42 am

in 2011 I brought a ton of crap to eat. Realistically I wound up sticking to pop tarts, sesame snaps, peanut butter ritz sandwiches, bacon a couple times.

...oh and a fairly steady intake of sparkles.
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby dragonpilot » Mon Nov 28, 2011 1:14 pm

Everyone's mileage varies greatly on this topic. I for one have simplified my cooking...IOW, I don't. Except for brewing coffee in the morning and the occasional microwaved meal, I'm into salads, sandwiches and canned fruits...not to mention copious supplies of snack foods.

The BRC just has way to much to offer me then spending that time over a hot stove/grill. I've got the whole rest of the year to cook. The playa allows me the opportunity to get off my fixation on food....but that's just me.
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby Savannah » Mon Nov 28, 2011 2:09 pm

dragonpilot wrote:The BRC just has way to much to offer me then spending that time over a hot stove/grill. I've got the whole rest of the year to cook. The playa allows me the opportunity to get off my fixation on food....but that's just me.


Nope, not just you. I make sure to get protein, fruit & caffeine out there, but simply & quickly. I can't bear to cook and wash dishes when I could be dancing.

Bonus: If someone else offers me a meal, it's extra special.
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby Mojojita » Mon Nov 28, 2011 2:42 pm

The stove vs. grill is a good question for a small camp. I would be sure you have a quick way to heat water as my #1 consideration. It's harder to clean anything (including myself) without hot water. This will be my first year in many that I am not cooking, shopping, planning, packing, or prepping for 30. I get the luxury of only 4 people so I am excited to do a more complex menu than I have done for a long time. I am thinking of leaving my grill at home and just using the cast iron grill on my camp stove.
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby Eric » Mon Nov 28, 2011 2:52 pm

VultureChow wrote:I don't think I want to do fully double the food, but will add a few extra quick items in so that while I'll have to cook sometimes, it won't be necessary for every dinner.


Doubling would be bad- you'll just be bringing more home with you. My suggestion is just to make sure you have enough non-cooking food available so that you're not stuck if you discover you hate cooking. You might choose not to cook & end up under-eating (and in the med tent) if you don't have other options available.
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby VultureChow » Mon Nov 28, 2011 2:53 pm

Mojojita wrote:The stove vs. grill is a good question for a small camp. I would be sure you have a quick way to heat water as my #1 consideration. It's harder to clean anything (including myself) without hot water. This will be my first year in many that I am not cooking, shopping, planning, packing, or prepping for 30. I get the luxury of only 4 people so I am excited to do a more complex menu than I have done for a long time. I am thinking of leaving my grill at home and just using the cast iron grill on my camp stove.


I'm not planning on boiling anything really, though I will bring a pot. I only drink iced coffee, so I was just going to get the starbucks instant iced coffee and go with that. The grill has a griddle insert for breakfast. Grilled meat and veggies for dinner. Eggs bacon and pancakes for breakfast, no cooking for lunch.

I think by the second night I should have a feeling for whether I want to continue cooking every day. If not, I'll hard boil the left over eggs and keep them refrigerated for the rest of the week. Same thing with the meat. I'll cook two days worth of steaks and just eat them cold on a sandwich the next two days.
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby Nipple » Mon Nov 28, 2011 2:58 pm

Eric wrote:
VultureChow wrote:I don't think I want to do fully double the food, but will add a few extra quick items in so that while I'll have to cook sometimes, it won't be necessary for every dinner.


Doubling would be bad- you'll just be bringing more home with you.


You could always intentionally plan to feed anything you're not going to eat to DPW in the Collexodous.
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby Savannah » Mon Nov 28, 2011 3:09 pm

Nipple wrote:
Eric wrote:
VultureChow wrote:I don't think I want to do fully double the food, but will add a few extra quick items in so that while I'll have to cook sometimes, it won't be necessary for every dinner.


Doubling would be bad- you'll just be bringing more home with you.


You could always intentionally plan to feed anything you're not going to eat to DPW in the Collexodous.


True. They like sealed, non-perishable food, booze and supplies (including feminine hygiene, btw). Pack any items you plan to gift so that you can access them on your way out of the city. If in doubt as to whether they can use a gift, ask. Certain things they trash, to be on the safe side.
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby Bounce530 » Mon Nov 28, 2011 3:47 pm

huh? DPW doing something "to be on the safe side"???
Now you're just making up stories....
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby VultureChow » Mon Nov 28, 2011 4:23 pm

Savannah wrote:
Nipple wrote:
Eric wrote:
Doubling would be bad- you'll just be bringing more home with you.


You could always intentionally plan to feed anything you're not going to eat to DPW in the Collexodous.


True. They like sealed, non-perishable food, booze and supplies (including feminine hygiene, btw). Pack any items you plan to gift so that you can access them on your way out of the city. If in doubt as to whether they can use a gift, ask. Certain things they trash, to be on the safe side.


I feel like I should get really weird non perishable items with the intention of donating them just for fun...

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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby Savannah » Mon Nov 28, 2011 4:41 pm

They would probably knock you over to get at that Tactical Bacon.
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby lemur » Mon Nov 28, 2011 5:49 pm

i remember at my familys little fishing cabin there were a bunch of cans of food we kept around for nostalgia puproses..

at one point we decided to open one.. these things were made in the 70s ..just a plain label that said "BACON" on it was an example.

so we opened it up..

it was raw bacon, rolled up like a lollypop... and man i tells ya it didnt smell so good.


that 'tactical bacon' BS has always made me laugh "fully cooked" ..pfft

that aint hardcore.

wheres the REAL bacon in a can of yesteryear ?
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby TinkerMom » Mon Nov 28, 2011 6:18 pm

I love to cook on the playa as well as at home. I am a BBQ queen. I cook for many, not just me. Last year, I had
bisquits and gravy with bacon, sausage, eggs and pancakes. My neighbors loved it! For lunch would be random
meats or sandwiches. And dinner, well, awesome as always. Ribs, chicken, steak....

I use a BBQ and a stove. And with my boys being natural hoovers, clean up was easy. Wipe it out with a paper towel.


But, I also have quick grab food for our back packs and for the times when it's too windy to fire things up.
Canned goods, chips, jerky, cookies, etc.
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby funkyjigsaw » Mon Nov 28, 2011 9:15 pm

2011 was my first year ... and I came from the UK, so my cooking plans were limited (unless I "buy and gift" cooking kit). A few comments :

- Don't worry too much about it, it's only a week. Just make sure you shovel enough stuff down your neck to stay healthy.
- Plan every meal, and only bring that stuff.
- Beer filled me up a lot, so I had to make a conscience effort to eat! :roll: :oops:
- You can keep food very nicely refrigerated very easily : 2 big coolers (one for food, one for beer), ice at Reno ... lasted for at least 3 days! Day 4 : buy ice. Now I know this, I would happily buy fresh steaks, bacon, salad.
- I would only plan for two meals per day ... one upon getting up (11am ish), and one before heading out for the night (7pm ish). Everyone has less appetite on the playa.
- I would have killed for bacon rolls every morning. I may buy a grill this year just for that alone!
- Get tinned fruit and fresh salad.
- Miso soup sachets from Trader Joe's.

What I may do this year : buy a cheap grill and gift/trash it; bacon rolls every morning (bring lots, and gift some :D ); half the days, plan for a freeze-dried meal (x4); half the days, go for a lamb or beef steak + salad (x4); one tin of fruit per day; 1 x miso soup per day; peanuts/trail mix for the playa; electrolyte powder mix.

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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby jcliff » Tue Nov 29, 2011 4:23 pm

This topic has actually been on my mind because my capabilities have greatly increased for next Burn. I took the leap an purchased an RV from fellow Burners (with a working stove, oven and sink and such.) I've caught myself many times saying, "Oh wow....I want to make that on the playa!" However, Lamplighters put out a kick-ass spread every night, and dinner together is one of the things I love best. I'm also aware that my appetite is drastically less on playa than it is at home. I've always eaten almonds on the go for breakfast, some crackers or granola bars mid-day, and then a big dinner with my village. I think my new cooking horizons will be mainly on the gifting end of things. I found a recipe for bacon meatballs that sounds incredible. I thought it might be nice to get a little smokey-joe to grill some hot dogs some afternoon and offer them to passer-bys. Maybe some warm chocolate-chip cookies or cinnamon buns for breakfast on a chilly early morning? Quesidillas while waiting out a dust storm? The long of the short will be to stick to a plan rather than purchase food on a whim. If I do that I'm likely to wind up at DPW sheepishly trying to pawn off food I didn't use.
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby Savannah » Tue Nov 29, 2011 5:20 pm

Cinnamon rolls would be godly. :lol:
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby tamarakay » Tue Nov 29, 2011 6:21 pm

So, you camp at lamplighters huh? I need to add you to my stalking list.

We ran across a hotdog stand out by the man one day. They cooked you up a hot dog and sang the cutest hot dog song while you ate. It was the best danged hotdog I've ever eaten in my life. I highly encourage this hot dog endeavor of yours. :D
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby BlackRockCityPimp » Wed Nov 30, 2011 4:55 am

I find it hard to eat alot on the playa. I use Mountain House and Natural High dehydrated food in a bag. You add boiling water and consume in 15 mins. The bag rolls up small and makes for minimal trash to haul. I also bring snack bars for the camelbak. I use a small homemade hobo inspired multifuel stove with kevlar rope coiled inside to hold fuel. I also bring EmergenC to keep with my h2o so I dont get all fawked up and need a babysitter.

If its your first burn you may want to consider preparing for camp food that dont spoil and camp cooking just in case your big plans of cooking like at home fail for whatever reason. Ice may have a fail at the location you choose to goto, your eggs could all break, my point being shit gets fawked up so have a backup you can handle.

Oh yeah.. wine bottles can pop open and such due to heat increasing air pressure etc etc.
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Re: Realistic cooking plans

Postby AntiM » Wed Nov 30, 2011 5:50 am

Savannah wrote:Cinnamon rolls would be godly. :lol:



Well, we were handing out orange rolls most of the time, but we also had cinnamon.

The rolls of rolls popped open, even in their sealed zipper bags. I think it was because we went with a store brand. Funny, we live at a slightly higher altitude, and we've been successful with rolls before, but this time our shopper bought too many rolls. Too crowded in the cooler?
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