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Camp Stove Potluck- Outdoor Cooking

Talking to veteran bike tourists, one realizes very quickly how bike touring has changed so much over the last three decades and in many ways hasn’t changed. The idea is still simple. Ride a bike and bring your gear to camp overnight, maybe over several nights or just start traveling the world. Keep it minimal and pack light. Bring memories and experiences and perhaps send home a pint glass or two from the breweries you visit…

At Coast In Bikes- we want to create a safe and fun environment for new and experienced bike tourists to develop friendships, ask questions, learn and share their experiences with us so we can keep learning and maybe even go on a future bike tour/packing trip with our new friends.

This week we held a Camp Stove Potluck at Estabrook Bier Garden. We invited people to bring their camp stoves and share their recipes and food suggestions. There was even a video made thanks to Mike!

Here are the camp stoves and pot systems that people shared and shared the pros/cons of each one.

  • Homemade “Beer” Can Stove Set with homemade stand (created by our own Mechanic and Third Coast Bike Works owner Jordan)
    • Pro- Cheap and light. Easy to transport and uses little denatured alcohol.
    • Con- Have to make it yourself and
  • WhisperLite by MSR
    • Pro- solid stand. good for winter and summer cooking. Can use a variety of fuel types.
    • Con- larger to pack. More expensive.
  • MSR WhisperLite
    • Pro- super light and easy to use
    • Con- specific canisters that have to be brought for the stove (such as REI and Clearwater in 3rd Ward)
  • Optimus Nova 
    • Pro-solid stand. good for winter and summer cooking. Can use a variety of fuel types.
    • Con- larger to pack. More expensive.
  • Perfect Flow 1 Burner Stove (rented from the backpacking gear the Urban Ecology Center rents)
    • Pro- Lightweight.
    • Con- Fuel specific to coleman.
  • Coleman Butane Stove– 8 oz
    • Pro- solid cooking service.
    • Con- Fuel specific to coleman. Large and hard to pack.

We had lentil strew, veggie curry, soup, black bean/egg tacos for dinner along with some tasty bier from the beer garden. Some tips are to keep it simple. Dehydrated foods such as the Fantastic mixes sold at the co-ops are great for quick simple “add only water” meals that are easy to pack. All agreed that after 50+ miles of biking that no matter how simple the meal- all that matters is making it quickly and sleeping.

Bummed you couldn’t make it? How about hosting your own pot luck? We’ll help advertise it. We’ll have more planned for next year but until then here’s Mike’s video of our gathering until then.

Check out the video here:

Phil’s Lentil Stew Recipe:

6 T lentils
(Red lentils will cook faster, but most others will work. Do not use French lentils—they won’t become thick and stewy.)

2-3 T dried chicken (or use ~12oz can of chicken)

1 t bouillon (or 1 cube)
(I used Hon Dashi, fish-bsed, but the recipe suggested chicken or anything else)

1 bay leaf
(I omitted)

1 t onion flakes
(Try not to substitute, but if you have to use granules, use much less—try ¼ teaspoon)

1 t garlic flakes
(Try not to substitute, but if you have to use granules, use much less—try ¼ teaspoon)

1/2 t thyme

1/4 t teaspoon crushed rosemary leaves

1/4 t teaspoon oregano

a few generous dashes of black pepper
(about 1/8 teaspoon)

1 dash cumin

2-3 C water
Add all of the ingredients (except water) to a zippered bag or other container, and label it so you remember what it is. When you’re ready for supper, empty the contents of the bag into your small, non-stick saucepan.

Cook for about twenty minutes (likely longer, depending on the lentils used), or until the lentils are soft and the consistency is to your liking.

Should you run out of liquid while the lentils are still hard, add a bit more water, and continue cooking. Water will also affect the consistency of the final dish: If you want the concoction to be soupier, add more water. If you want a thicker, stewy-er mix, add less.

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