In the summer and fall, one of my favorite weekend activities is camping at one of the many state parks around New York and New Jersey. My boyfriend James and I ‘car camp’, which means we can bring lots of cooking gear and food, since the car is on, or just a short walk from, the site. This lets us get out of the city for a few nights, cook and eat delicious food, hike a bit, and enjoy the outdoors. Food is usually the highlight of the trip for me, and although the classic hot dogs and hamburgers are always in the mix, I like to change it up and try new things as well.
This weekend, we camped at High Point State Park. We arrived on Friday and set up camp, then got going on dinner that has been in process for a while. On Wednesday I picked up a beautiful 28-day dry-aged ribeye on my way home. On Thursday James sous vided it to 130 degrees and put it in the fridge to cool. Sous vide, as it is done by home cooks, is a technique that involves using an immersion circulator to cook vacuum-sealed food in a warm, swirling water bath. I’ll write more about the immersion circulator and other fun stuff I have in my kitchen sometime soon. For now, just know that it is good for pre-making steak until it is almost done, so that you can finish it over the fire.
When we were ready for dinner at the campsite, I seasoned it with some salt and garlic powder from our ‘spice missile’ and threw it over the fire for a few minutes, just to put a nice crust on it. The spice container is a really handy thing to have with you on the go. It has three compartments on each side, so you can have a total of six different spices. It also comes with handy labels of common spices. I have salt in two sections, garlic powder, onion powder, dried rosemary, and lemon pepper.
James made some roasted baked potatoes as a side. He poked some holes in them, wrapped them in foil, and put them right into the coals to cook. After they started to feel tender, he pulled them out and finished them on grate above the fire. On other trips I have made up some chive sour cream to eat with the baked potatoes and brought it with me, but for this trip I was lazy and just used butter.