Earthy & hearty

recipe box August

There aren't too many things that taste better than food cooked outdoors over an open fire. These recipes are great for a campfire or even an outside grill throughout the summer and fall months. (Photo provided)


Recipe Box

By Annette Kukoy and Jackie Shayotovich


            Al Frapolli, a family friend, loves the great outdoors. He’s also a wonderful cook so he has shared recipes for simple meals to make over an open campfire. These recipes can easily be adapted for use with a gas grill, or indoor stove and oven. We enjoyed making them while on a recent hiking trip in Vermont with help from Gene Pategas, another friend and outdoorsman.


Campfire Saw Mill Gravy

1 lb. package Jimmy Dean sage country sausage

4 cups milk

1/4 cup flour

Coarse black pepper to taste


Sliced bread

            Break up sausage in iron skillet; cook over medium flame so as not to cook off all of the grease. Once the sausage is cooked, add the flour. Continue to cook and stir. Slowly add the milk and pepper to taste. Add more milk or flour to make the desired thickness of gravy. While the gravy is thickening, put the bread on the fire to make the toast. Pour the gravy over the toast and serve. (Al recommends lots of black pepper and if you have no plates, just eat it like a slice of pizza.)


Skillet Cheese Dip

3 cups shredded cheddar cheese

1 (8 oz.) package cream cheese

1 cup lager beer

1 clove garlic, finely minced

1 teaspoon dried chives

Pinch of cayenne

            Place all the ingredients in a cast iron skillet. Cover with foil. Place over hot coals and cook until melted. Stir well and serve with baguette slices or tortilla chips.


Lime Cilantro Skirt Steak

2 lbs. skirt steak, cut into 1/4 lb. sections

4 limes

2 cups fresh cilantro

1 cup canola oil

3 cloves minced garlic

            Salt and pepper the steak. Cut the limes in half and squeeze the juice into a large zip lock bag. Place the lime halves into the bag along with remaining marinade ingredients. Toss and mix together. Add the steak; seal and shake. Place in the freezer until ready to use. Cook the thawed meat over an open flame until desired doneness.


Hobo Potatoes

4 Yukon Gold potatoes

Olive oil

Salt and pepper

            Cut potatoes into 1-inch dice. Prepare a “hobo pack” using a large square of aluminum foil. Place cut potatoes in the center of the foil; drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Wrap top and sides tightly, sealing all openings. Place on grill over hot fire. Cook for 10 minutes on each side.


Tin Pan Mushrooms

1 medium-size disposable foil pan

4 cups fresh mushrooms, sliced

1 cup Worcestershire sauce

2 teaspoons black pepper

2 teaspoons soy sauce, or 1 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons butter

            Place all ingredients in the foil pan; mix lightly. Cover with foil, cook for about 20 minutes over campfire.


Apple Snickers Fireball

4 large apples

4 fun-sized Snickers bars

            Wash and core apples just to within 1/2 inch of the bottom. Place candy bar in hollowed out core. Wrap each apple with heavy duty aluminum foil, twisting tightly at the top. Place on coals of fire. Let roast for 15 minutes then turn over and let roast for another 15 minutes.


Tin Pan Soup (not pictured)

1 medium-size disposable foil pan

1 lb. hot Italian sausage, or hot dogs

4 cans of your favorite Campbell’s Chunky Soup

            Cook the meat over a campfire or grill. Cut into slices and put in tin pan; add soup. Heat over coals until bubbling hot.

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