Friday, June 15, 2012

Hobo Stew - Camping (Tinfoil Meal)

When I was in sixth grade I had a teacher take our class on an overnight "field trip" to Silver Creek Falls, supposedly it was "educational," I honestly don't remember learning much of anything, other than there were some amazing meals that could be cooked in the coals of a campfire other than s'mores and of course that fish will spit out my bait to bite the bait of the person next to me. 

One such meal was what they called "Hobo Stew" where you place your meat, potatoes and veggies all into a tinfoil pouch and shove them into the fire and in roughly 20 minutes they're done! Could anything be so easy? I really didn't think so.

My family are going on a trip to the coast, and will hopefully arrive home with our bellies full of freshly caught clams and crab that we not only procured ourselves but also cooked by ourselves. Just in case our trip isn't as successful as I hope, I'm preparing these in advance so they can be an easy back up plan.  And if we do happen to have a successful fishing trip, we can always save them for dinner the next night on the grill!

Hobo Stew - Camping (Tinfoil Meal)

1 Potato, cut up into 1/8" thick slices - per person
1/4 to 1/2 lb of ground beef - per person
1 to 2 carrots, cut up into 1/8" thick slices - per person
2 Tbsp butter or margarine - per person
Onions 1/4" slices (optional)
Bell Peppers 1/4" slices (optional)
1 Tbsp water - per person
cooking spray (optional)
1-2 pieces of 18" x 12" foil - per person
permanent marker


Build a fire that can produce enough coals to cook the stew.  Open flames are not recommended.
Cut your veggies before you leave if you can, if not cut them as the fire crackles away.
Spray the foil with cooking spray.
In the center of the foil add meat first, then vegetables. Top with seasonings and then butter and about one tablespoon of water.
Fold foil, first starting by lifting the foil from each long side and bring the long sides together. Fold these sides together over a few times, sealing the edges tightly. Continue to fold down tightly until it almost reaches the food layers leaving some room for steam to build. Pinch shut and fold over the width-wise edges to seal them, if you feel that there's a chance it might leak, use an extra piece of tinfoil to lock in the moisture and contents.
Be sure to mark your packet so it doesn't get mixed up with someone else's.
Put packet into the coals. Cooking time depends on how hot your fire is. Average cooking time is 10-20 minutes.
Generally, if you can smell the food, it's close to being finished. Check after 10-15 minutes to see if the ground beef is completely cooked, and if the carrots and potatoes are tender. If the meal is not fully cooked, wrap it back up and put it on the coals for a few more minutes.

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