COOKING LIKE A PIONEERCrystal Calhoun
I am here to give a short, but insightful outlook on cooking on an open fire, what that is like, and what to expect.
I know it can look so fun and just the best thing ever on those movies where the women are outside just making those nice southern meals under a small controlled fire, where flies and all other bugs cease to exist, and the smoke doesn’t bother them and heat is of no concern. Now that is not to say that one cannot have a good time while cooking over an open fire, especially if you have the camaraderie of family or friends. But there are certainly some things that (if you have never done so), you will find out go along with the territory of outside cooking.
Yes, unfortunately bugs are a common side effect of pioneer style cooking. They are attracted to the wonderful smells of a good meal and a happy time. Why can’t they have fun too? So when you decide to take your food outside to cook, keep in mind that flies and sometimes other insects will want to join in too, and they don’t ask permission.
Sometimes I think some people watch too many movies and take those as a sort of reality, where you can wake up with your hair already done with a full face of make-up on and be out the door in three minutes with time to stop at Starbucks and grab your favorite coffee. Ha, I wish. Just like you won’t wake up with everything falling into place, your fire isn’t going to magically keep itself going at the same heat and flame. Tending a fire to cook your food can be a difficult task because you don’t want it too high or too low. This skill only comes with practice and time. The more you do it, the better you become. A steady hot fire directly underneath your pot is what you want, without it licking up the sides, because then you run the risk of it cooking too fast or burning it altogether.
What does weather have to do with this? Well, the bottom line is, if it’s hot outside, chances are it’s going to feel a LOT hotter by the flames! Make sure you take into account the weather conditions outside, because what could have been a great time could turn utterly miserable due to the heat, cold, rain, or snow.
Having brought to light a few concerns about pioneer cooking, this should not deter you from trying it. Outside cooking is a great way to bond with family and just have a nice time away from phones and computers. Make a day and get your family or friends together and just hang out and have fun