Camping chef, 136pp.
by Heidi Marfurt
Explore Australia Publishing, Prahran, Victoria, 2009
Cooking on page 32
If you follow my travel blog, you’ll know that Poor John and I do a lot of camping—usually in remote places. Sometimes we’re cooking for just us and sometimes we’re part of a cook group preparing meals for anywhere from four to 28 people. This is when a collection of easy-to-make recipes is invaluable.
So I was delighted to grab this for $2 at one of Canberra’s regular Lifeline Book Fairs (the next one starts 26 June 2015). It had lots of useful tips for camp cooking, and I was even happier to find a page-32 recipe that is perfectly geared for our remote camping. In all the far-flung places we’ve travelled, the only ingredients we’ve been able to buy in almost every place are eggs, bread, tomatoes and onions. So here goes.
3 tablespoons milk
8 slices bread
2 teaspoons oil or butter
Place the eggs and milk in a medium-sized bowl and whisk together with a fork. Dip he slices of bread into the egg mixture, allowing as much liqud to soak into both sides of the bread and possible.
Heat the oil or butter in a frying pan. Fry the slices of bread over a medium heat for 3 minutes on each side, or until golden.
Sweet—Add a few pinches of cinnamon and 1 or 2 teaspoons of sugar to the egg mixture. Serve with fresh berries or stone fruit, or fried apple and pear slices. For something a bit different, top your French toast with fried mashed banana, yoghurt, cream, maple syrup and a squeeze of lemon juice ate optional extras.
Savoury—Add a pinch of salt, half a cup of grated cheese and dried oregano or chopped fresh herbs to the egg mixture. Serve with fried bacon, mushrooms or greens.
Both—Add a teaspoon of sugar to the egg mixture, dip a peanut butter sandwich into the mix and serve with bacon. The result is a salty–sweet combo that’s more North American than French and very, very tasty.
How it played out
It’s hard to orchestra a breakfast for Poor John. He’s up and out the backdoor at sparrow’s fart (in his case, 5:30am) to walk for an hour before settling down with toast, marmalade, coffee and Canberra’s daily newspaper.
Last night I reminded him that I was going to make this recipe for breakfast, so would he hold off until the light was good enough for photographs. The freshly cut loaf of my sourdough bread and the knife smeared with marmalade were obvious signs that he forgot or ignored my request.
So I decided to make three-quarters of a batch. And instead of the sweet version I’d planned, I made a savoury one, adding grated parmesan and black salt (that I bought in India). Sautéed some mushrooms to go on the side and sprinkled on some extra parmesan. Still wished I’d had some bacon.
This is almost exactly the way we’ve made French toast when we’ve been camping, so it’s nice to know I’ve been doing things right. It’s also great to have the author suggest so many variations. A wonderfully versatile recipe.