The Ultimate Guide to Cooking Outdoors
Gather round an open fire. Share delicious food inspired by the outdoors and infused with age-old wisdom. This is living. This is the way of the wilderness chef.
Ray Mears has spent his life travelling the world, living with and learning from trackers, adventurers and indigenous peoples in the desert, the rainforests and the Arctic north. In this book he presents us with a delicious array of his most popular and enduring recipes, tried-and-tested for all levels of skill and in all conditions, from quick and tasty meals to opulent gourmet feasts.
Opening with advice on setting up your outdoor kitchen and essential cooking techniques, Ray shows how to assess your ingredients, light a fire, cook in ashes and leaves, steam, smoke, and build a ground oven.
He then shares his fabulous and enjoyable recipes, including:
- easy ideas that children and grownups can try out (campfire s'mores, wilderness hot dog, egg on a stick, lemon chicken wrapped in dock leaves)
- gourmet meals (Italian hunter's rabbit, succulent split-stick roasted salmon)
- recipes learned from bushmen and indigenous peoples around the world (potjiekos, canoe country pancakes, fragrant and intense Gurkha curry)
Woven throughout are colourful stories of Ray's cooking around the world, from baking a birthday cake using ingredients sourced in the rainforest, to steaming fish Maori-style using bags crafted from Bull Kelp, and pulling a giant Emu leg drumstick out of a ground oven built by a Pitjantjatjara elder in the Central Australian desert.
This is a practical and inspiring book drawing on the love of the outdoors, cooking in the open air and creating delicious food from scratch.
Mears, an outdoorsman and U.K. television personality, brings his survivalist expertise to bear on this guide to cooking while camping, hiking, or canoeing. The instructions can be as clever as baking an egg on a skewer or as involved as his hunter's spatchcock poussin with honey glaze. Food choices for heating directly on embers include steak and oysters, or one can add layers of moss to create a natural steamer for sea bass. A brief section on improvised grills instructs how to transform dampened sticks into a hibachi, and ample attention is paid to cast-iron cookware, stone or steel griddles, and soup pots. But his refreshingly minimalist and primitive approach leaves no room for aluminum foil ("It has no place in the pristine wilderness"). Mears's British sensibility shines through with various types of curry, plus offerings such as toad-in-the-hole and a steamed pudding called dead man's leg. Quick bakes include a panoply of breads including Lebanese flatbread and lightly pan-fried corn pone, while an extended exploration of tea drinking includes a chart of wild teas and how to use them. This book belongs in any nature lover's backpack.