This past week, my mother, my children, my brother’s children and I headed to a local state park for some camping and family time. The baseball season had come to an end, the weather was beautiful and we had a full week before the chaos of football practice began. Who needs any other excuse to get outside and back to nature with family?
Well, back to nature with family for this week really meant, sleeping in a rustic cabin at the local state park. There was a roof over our heads, but no running water or indoor plumbing to be seen. There were however, showers and bathrooms spaced ever so intermittently around the campground. Being, the county girl who has become accustomed to village life that I am, I grabbed my coffee maker and my crock pot. With these things, I can do anything. Right? Well, at least I was going to be caffeinated while I tried.
I also saw this as an opportunity to try out some great Pinterest ideas for campfire cooking. One I had my eye on for quite some time involved bananas. This recipe inspiration “pin” came from http://lickmyspoon.com/recipes/banana-boats/. We took our bananas and split them in the middle. Into that we added chocolate chips, peanut butter and mini marshmallows. We then wrapped them up and placed them on the grill over the hot coals from dinner. These little boats roasted up in about 5 minutes. They were spectacular! I mean, just really fabulous…have I said how awesome these were? Because they were. The bananas were perfectly warmed and caramelizing from the heat. The chocolate and peanut butter is just an awesome combination as it is but then with the marshmallow goodness melted all through… just bliss I tell you, pure perfectly wonderful bliss.
Since I was on a role after those banana boats, the next night, we roasted marshmallows with the kids and what summer night campfire is complete without s’mores? To our s’mores, I spread peanut butter on the graham crackers, then added the chocolate bars and let the kids add their own roasted marshmallows. These were also wonderful. I am pretty certain if I learned anything this past week it is that peanut butter makes everything spectacular.
All this dessert and I have yet to tell you about my brilliant idea to bring a crock pot camping. We have a couple of outlets to use at our site. We brought along a surge protector strip and used this to give ourselves a couple extra outlets to plug things in. That is brilliant in its own right, but the crock pot really does take the cake. In the crock pot we made mac and cheese one day. Just set it on low and let the noodles, milk and cheese, blend together while we were off enjoying the lake. On another day, that crock pot warmed chicken and veggies. It was a great holder of hot dogs too, kept them warm and ready to go as soon as the last munchkin came out of the water to eat. We never did get a chance to try out the crock pot for breakfast foods. It’s a must try on our next trip, but even in spite of not trying out the breakfast options, the crock pot has for sure found its way into the essential pile when I am packing for camping.