On our last day of a camping trip we like to plan an easy breakfast involving minimal clean-up. Often we make bagel sandwiches but really enjoyed this breakfast flatbread on our last trip.

South American Breakfast Flatbread

For this one, we used leftover homemade chimichurri which is an Argentinian herb & garlic sauce. A simple drizzle of good olive oil would work just fine.

Choose any type of flatbread such as naan, pita, focaccia, pre-baked pizza crust, or even English muffins.

Serves 2

  • 1 medium-sized flatbread
  • 2-3 Tablespoons chimichurri (recipe follows)
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 1 plum tomato
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 Tablespoon oil for frying eggs
  • chipotle hot sauce, optional

Naan with chimichurri & avocado

Warm flatbread over moderate heat. Spread with chimichurri. Cut avocado in half and remove pit. Hold one half and slice lengthwise, then across, with a paring knife, careful not to cut all the way through the skin. Repeat with the other half. Turn over and squeeze out over the flatbread. Smash and spread out evenly with a fork.

Sliced Tomatoes

Slice tomato and place over avocado. Heat oil in a pan and fry two eggs, sunny-side up.

TIP: When cooking eggs sunny-side up, place a lid over the pan after they have set and the trapped heat will help cook the tops perfectly.

Latin Breakfast Pizza

Slide eggs over the tomatoes. Top with chipotle hot sauce, if desired, or simply a grind of salt and pepper.

CJ Chimichurri Sauce

  • 1 bunch flat leaf parsley
  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 3 – 4 cloves garlic
  • juice of 1/2 – 1 lemon
  • olive oil
  • salt & pepper
  • hot pepper or pepper flakes, optional

Snip the ends and roots off the herb bunches but keep in mind that you’ll use both the leaves and stems so you don’t have to pick the leaves off. Place the bunches in a large colander or salad spinner. rinse well, and shake or spin to dry.

Place the and garlic in a food processor and pulse until evenly chopped. Add about half a lemon’s worth of juice. Put the top on and drizzle olive oil through the inlet while the processor is running, until the mixture is slightly loose but not runny. Taste and season with salt, pepper, and hot pepper to taste. You may need to add more lemon juice (or white wine vinegar) and olive oil.

Chimichurri

Chimichurri

Scrape out into a container, cover, and keep in the fridge for up to a week.

Chimichurri is a traditional Argentinian steak sauce which is interesting because it is nothing like the North American idea of steak sauce. Yet, if you top a lovely grilled steak with it, you will understand!

Chimichurri

Chimichurri

The herby flavoured sauce relies mainly on fresh parsley. Many varieties exist throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. Some use oregano and others contain a lot of cilantro. We favour the cilantro/parsley combination. If you are one of the folks for whom cilantro tastes like soap (it’s a real affliction) substitute your preferred herb to go along with parsley.

What we like best about chimichurri is that it’s such an amazingly simple but versatile sauce for beef, pork, chicken, shrimp, fish, game, vegetables, and even tofu. Use it straight as a condiment, finishing sauce, basting sauce, or marinade. We’ve also mixed it with melted butter for basting vegetables and seafood. Add a spoonful to plain vinaigrette for an awesome salad dressing. It also makes a unique pizza sauce, bruschetta topping, or addition to a dip.

It blends into many cuisines. We make South American dishes with it as well as Tex-Mex (corn & black bean salad), Mexican (fish tacos), Spanish (potato & chorizo pockets), Italian (pizza & bruschetta base), Greek (souvlaki), and Thai (spicy coconut soup).

CJ Chimichurri Sauce

  • 1 bunch flat leaf parsley
  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 3 – 4 cloves garlic
  • juice of 1/2 – 1 lemon
  • olive oil
  • salt & pepper
  • hot pepper or pepper flakes, optional

Snip the ends and roots off the herb bunches but keep in mind that you’ll use both the leaves and stems so you don’t have to pick the leaves off. Place the bunches in a large colander or salad spinner. rinse well, and shake or spin to dry.

Place the and garlic in a food processor and pulse until evenly chopped. Add about half a lemon’s worth of juice. Put the top on and drizzle olive oil through the inlet while the processor is running, until the mixture is slightly loose but not runny. Taste and season with salt, pepper, and hot pepper to taste. You may need to add more lemon juice (or white wine vinegar) and olive oil.

Scrape out into a container, cover, and keep in the fridge for up to a week.

These are some of the dishes we’ve used chimichurri on…

South American Breakfast Pizza

Breakfast Pizza: Naan bread, chimichurri, smashed avocado, sliced tomato, sunny side up eggs, and chipotle hot sauce

Canned Potatoes and Chorizo with Chimichurri, Fresh Cilantro, and Grilled Lime

Brunch or Lunch Pockets: Canned Potatoes and Chorizo with Chimichurri, Fresh Cilantro, and Grilled Lime served up in Pita Pockets

Greek Dinner: Pork Souvlaki with Sautéed Onion & Bell Peppers, Tzatziki served in Pita Bread

Souvlaki Dinner: Chimichurri Marinated Pork Strips with Sautéed Onion & Bell Peppers, Tzatziki served in Pita Bread

Surf & Turf Grill: Grilled Steak Topped with Chimichurri, Grilled Lobster Tails and Corn-on-the-Cob Basted with Chimichurri Butter

Surf & Turf Grill: Grilled Steak Topped with Chimichurri, Grilled Lobster Tails and Corn-on-the-Cob Basted with Chimichurri Butter

 

 

 

Here is a simple and tasty omelet that you can make on your next camping trip. The trick is to have a large enough sauté pan for a 3-4 egg omelet, but not so large that it won’t fit over a small camping burner. You can scale it down to a two-egg omelet for one person.

A week ago we were camping during a very hot stretch of weather so we decided on a cool and refreshing Caprese salad for supper the first night, drizzled with olive oil and balsamic, and a baguette to sop up the juices. The next morning we used the leftovers to make  the omelet, letting the ingredients do double duty.

 

As a side note, an omelet is great for dinner, too.

We asked our sommelier friend, Christopher Wilton, of The Small Winemakers Collection and Wilton Wine Consulting, for a recommendation to go with the Caprese salad we had the night before. He suggested any Italian white other than Pinot Grigio.  We chose an inexpensive Soave Classico. It was spot on, light and refreshing.

Caprese Salad

When we’re camping, we like to make sure we have a no-fuss meal for breakfast or lunch on our last day. Something quick & light with little clean-up involved makes packing up a lot easier.

This is also a great item if you’re headed out for a hike or picnic.

Buns with cheddar, ham, apple (1)

In cooler seasons, we might use buns, but prefer bagels at other times because they keep a little bit better. Bagels are also a good option if you’re wrapping these up and packing them because they don’t squish. Jalapeño bagels are tasty if you like spicy food!

If you want to get fancy, lightly toast the sliced bagel or bun on a griddle. You can even soften the apple slices although the crunch of fresh apple adds a nice texture.

  • Firm bun or bagel, sliced in half
  • Spreadable cheddar (substitute flavoured cream cheese)
  • Thin slices honey ham or black forest ham
  • Apple, thinly sliced

Buns with cheddar, ham, apple

If you’re packing these ahead of time, assemble and wrap tightly with plastic wrap. They’ll keep unrefrigerated for a couple of hours.

Asparagus Omelet (1)

An omelet makes a great outdoor camping breakfast, especially if you have some veggies to add. While this may not be suited for backpackers, just about everyone else can prepare this tasty stuffed omelet. If you have leftover grilled vegetables from the previous dinner, that’s even easier! If not, we suggest grilling your vegetables first so that they are ready to go when your omelet is just about done.

Vegetables: Red or sweet onion, bell pepper, portobello mushroom, spring green onion, asparagus, zucchini summer squash, and mild chiles are all good candidates. Toss with a little oil and pinch of salt before cooking. You can grill vegetables in various ways, over campfire with a grate, on a charcoal grill, on a portable propane grill, with a grill basket or cast iron grill/griddle, or even in a sauté pan. Some vegetables are best sliced and others can be left whole, or grilled whole and sliced after cooking. Keep veggies warm on a plate with a lid on top, or with foil.
Firepit Grill (1)

 

Grill Basket

 

Grilled Veg

 

 

 

 

Cheese: For additional creaminess add cheese, crumbled, sliced, or grated. Best options are goat cheese, gouda, or havarti, plain or flavoured, to suit your taste.

Seasonings: A sprig of fresh herb is nice too, or simply some dried seasonings like Italian blend or ground chipotle.

Meat: If you want to add meat, smoked salmon or trout is nice. Diced ham, bacon, pancetta, or smoked chorizo are good options, but less is more, we have found! We like ours simple and delicious.

Eggs: Allow 2 eggs per person. A four-egg omelet fits a medium sauté pan and feeds two people quite well. You can use egg whites or egg substitute, but we prefer whole eggs.

  • eggs, beaten thoroughly (dash of milk, cream, or water, optional)
  • goat cheese, crumbled
  • asparagus, grilled
  • sprig of dill, minced

Pre-heat a medium sauté pan over low heat with a dash of oil. Add beaten eggs and swirl around the pan before setting back on the heat. With a spatula, gently push the egg mixture from the inside towards the outside, allowing the uncooked egg to run into the centre. Lift the pan off the heat to regulate temperature if it’s cooking too quickly. When the egg has started to set firmly on top, flip the omelet using the spatula. If you’re not too confident about flipping the omelet, you can invert a large plate over the pan and flip the omelet onto the plate, then slide it back into the pan. Turn the heat off and allow the residual heat to finish cooking the eggs. Add the cheese around the centre to soften. Then add the veggies on one half (and meat, if using). Add herbs and season to taste. Gently fold omelet over in half and slide onto the large plate. Cut and serve.

If you’re making more than one omelet, put a lid or foil over the plate and it will keep warm long enough to make another.

Asparagus OmeletAsparagus Omelet (1)

 

Just because you’re camping doesn’t mean you can’t eat extravagantly! There are all kinds of easy-to-pack treats you can indulge in like a little pâté and pepper jelly on crackers, or slices of apple with shavings of hard aged artisanal cheese.

For a very simple, yet decadent breakfast, we made “Duo of Eggs”.

Duo of Eggs

This recipe is flexible:

Use whole eggs, egg whites, or egg substitute, as you desire.

For cream, use sour cream, crème fraiche, plain yogurt, or as we did, sour cream with a dash of horseradish blended in. Lemon zest would be nice, too. We brought a small container of the cream, but you may find yourself using sour cream or yogurt in other meals. You can even whisk the eggs with some of the cream!

We used lumpfish caviar which is relatively affordable and comes in a very small container. Salmon roe would be nice, too. If you aren’t a fan of fishy caviar, try Kelp Caviar. It’s a sustainable, Canadian caviar substitute made from seaweed. It’s not nearly as fishy tasting, has zero calories & cholesterol, is high in calcium, and is shelf-stable prior to opening. There are several flavours – the wasabi caviar would be tasty and pretty!

Kelp Caviar Wasabi

Recipe:

  • 2 eggs per person, whisked and scrambled until soft
  • 2 Tbsp per person of sour cream, crème fraiche, or plain yogurt
  • 1 heaping teaspoon per person of caviar or substitute

Bon Appétit!

We picked up an 8-pack of Golden Grill Russet Hashbrown Potatoes at Costco in Peterborough, Ontario. They’re made by Basic American Foods of Walnut Creek, California and are also available through Amazon. The packs are shelf-stable and lightweight – perfect for camping, boating, backpacking, and the cottage.  In the past, we’ve used Idahoan and Ore-Ida brands but have to admit that the packaging on the Golden Grill is much handier. You rehydrate right in the carton!

This recipe is great for camping or boating. It’s perfect for breakfast, lunch, or dinner and comes together quickly with a minimum of ingredients like canned sliced potatoes which are shelf-stable. You can choose the spiciness of the sausage and hot sauce to suit your tastes. Grilling the lime in the pan brings out the essential oils and adds a nice tartness to the dish.

If you’re packing an avocado for camping, wait until it’s softly ripe. Put it into a small plastic container to keep from bruising and pack in your little fridge or camping cooler. The chill will slow down the ripening.

Serves 2 – 3 (easy to scale up)

  • 1 can sliced potatoes, drained
  • ½ lb (250gr) chorizo sausage, mild or spicy, removed from casing and roughly crumbled
  • 1 Tbsp oil or butter
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro. Cilantro-haters can substitute flat leaf parsley.
  • 1 lime, cut in half
  • ½ cup guacamole (quick recipe below)
  • In place of guacamole, substitute chipotle mayo, cilantro-lime aioli, or queso cheese sauce
  • favourite hot sauce, Summer Kitchen Piri Piri Garlic Chile Sauce is perfect
  • 2 – 4 pita pockets (1 – 1-½ whole pockets per person)

Quick Guacamole

  • 1 lime
  • 1 – 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • optional, 1 small tomato chopped
  • pinch of salt

Heat the oil and/or butter in a medium sauté pan over medium-high heat. Spread the sliced potatoes out in the pan and cook until they become golden brown, turning occassionally. When done, remove to a plate and cover with a lid to keep warm.

Brown the chorizo in the same pan until it’s cooked through and the smaller bits are a bit crispy. Turn the heat down to medium. Add the potatoes back to the pan and mix in half of the cilantro. Push some of mixture aside and press the lime halves onto the bottom of the pan, cut side down, to quickly “grill”. Remove the limes; set one half aside and squeeze the other half over the mixture. Turn off the heat and toss in the remaining cilantro, turning to combine. Transfer to a serving dish with a lid on top to keep warm. Briefly warm the pitas in the pan just to soften up.

Chorizo & Potato Pockets

While one person is cooking the chorizo-potato filling, another can make the guacamole. Cut the lime in half and squeeze all the juice out into a small bowl. Finely mince the garlic and add to the bowl. Cut the avocado in half lengthwise and remove the pit. Squeeze out the avocado into the bowl and immediately stir into the lime juice with a fork or spoon to prevent browning. Add the chopped tomato, if using. Add salt to taste.

Potato & Chorizo Pockets

Cut the pita pockets in half and serve with the chorizo-potato filling, fresh guacamole, Piri-Piri sauce, and an extra squeeze of lime.

Enjoy!

One of the joys of camping for us is camp cooking. We enjoy adapting recipes to suit outdoor cooking and also reserve a few family favourites just for camping trips. Some things taste better in the great outdoors! Eggs Diablo is one of them. It’s simple to prepare and uses primarily shelf stable pantry items. If you like shoulder season camping when the mornings can be a bit chillier, you’ll find this hearty dish quite fulfilling. You can suit your own
tastes by varying the flavour of the salsa from mild to hot.

Eggs Diablo

Serves 2 – 4

  • 1 can of sliced potatoes or package of dehydrated
    hash browns
  • 1 large jar of your favourite salsa or two smaller jars
  • 4 eggs
  • oil for frying

Heat oil in a medium sized frying pan over medium-high heat. If using canned potatoes, drain them and place in the pan. If using dried hash browns, mix with water per package directions and spread out in the pan. Fry the potatoes until they are evenly crisp. You don’t need to season with salt & pepper because you’ll get plenty of flavour from the salsa.

Eggs Diablo (1)

While the potatoes are cooking, place another medium frying pan over medium-high heat. Pour all of the salsa into the pan and bring up to a simmer. Once simmering, gently break four eggs separately into the salsa, keeping them as much apart from each other as possible. Turn the heat down slightly, cover the pan, and allow the
eggs to poach.

Eggs Diablo (2)

If the potatoes are done before the eggs, turn off the heat and cover the pan. They will stay warm for quite a while. When the egg whites have lost their translucency, uncover.

Eggs Diablo (3)

Divide the potatoes among the serving plates. With a large spoon or spatula, spoon salsa over the potatoes and slide the eggs out of the pan on top of the salsa. Spoon the rest of the salsa around the eggs.

Eggs Diablo (4)

Enjoy!