Spice up your camping food.
The four of us, myself and three good paddling friends landed on Rosa Island, the gem of Nuchatlitz Marine Park at about 10:30 at night. It was early July and we still displayed our Canada Day flags on the back-end of our kayaks though out there in the coast not many would see our lingering patriotic flare. Rosa greeted me for the second time in two years on that evening after the long drive and equal time spent paddling and we all were tired. None of us could meet the fatigue dealt with by one of our group suffering from the effects of kidney disease. He was knackered but unlike the rest of us who settled for setting up tents and boiling up pouches of boil-in-a-bag goop for dinner, he pulled out all the stops. Stove set up and a camping wok with sizzling bits of chicken under a shower of spices sprinkled from small containers that he brought in an old first aid kit bag. The aroma was wild, spiced and appetizing while my indian rice and spinach lay on my plate looking pre-digested.
Since then we all stepped up to the plate and began cooking better camp meals, myself especially so much so I wrote a cookbook with some of my favorite camp cooking ideas. No more freeze-dried boil in the bag for this kayak camper!
Our kayaks now weigh in very heavy on those first few days of paddling tours, mainly due to the fresh ingredients that have pushed a bag or two of essentials to the kayak’s deck to make more room. For me, the key to a good meal is always seasoning. Not too much and never too little. The tough part is how to bring those precious dried herbs and spices? Moisture is the enemy and around here there is plenty of that. Kayaking and camping always go hand in hand with a bit of humidity or damp that can cake up your spices. My friend used old film canisters as he was the avid photographer of the group and this was in the pre-digital camera age. They worked well and were air and water tight. I have tried it all but while surfing the interweb the other night I stumbled in this. I guess I will be sucking on a few Tic Tacs this spring in time for the outdoor camp cooking season.