5 Tips to Camp Oven Cooking
No matter how good a chef you are at home, camp oven cooking requires a different set of skills and a fair bit of practice. We recommend starting out with simple, smaller meals before volunteering to cook for a large group of tired, hungry campers.
While trial and error is one of the best ways to learn, we also covered a few additional campfire cooking tips that will help you master the camp oven once and for all.
- Season your camp oven
Seasoning your camp oven will not only create a non-stick surface, it will also help maintain longevity, prevent rust and remove any potential iron taste in your food. For the full seasoning process click here.
- Building your fire
One of the first things you should do when you get to your campsite is build a fire and get it going. This will ensure you have plenty of coals for when you are ready to start cooking. Successful campfire cooking is all about the availability of coals and where you place position them. *Tip: The bigger the fire the more coals produced. One-meter square is ideal.
You want to avoid placing a cold camp oven straight onto the coals as it will reduce the temperature. Instead, pre-heat your oven (carefully) over the fire before you start cooking.
- Coals, Coals, Coals
Once your camp oven is pre-heated and your dish is ready to be cooked, place the oven on top of the coals. You want to follow the rule of thirds to your coals - one third coals beneath the oven and two thirds on the lid. This will help prevent the base of your dish from burning and create a true oven effect.
- Temperature testing
A great little trick to temperature test your camp oven is to place a strip of newspaper, paper towel or napkin on a trivet inside your oven and watch for a colour change. If it is cream or pale yellow the temperature is warm - moderate (about 180˚C). Light brown indicates that the oven is moderate - hot (about 200˚C) and dark brown is very hot (about 230˚C). If the paper is black and smoking, the temperature is extremely hot and could cause your food to turn to ash very quickly.