Overland Chef: Fall 2008 Recipes

In the Fall 2008 Overland Journal, we debuted the new Overland Chef column, a celebration of good camp cooking, equipment, and tips on useful things like storage and nutrition for long trips. Each issue will feature a menu and one recipe, with the rest of the menu’s recipes posted on the blog. (To search future recipes, use the Overland Chef category link at left.) 

Fall 2008 featured this delicious menu:

Starters & Drinks ~ Spiced Nuts and Dried Fruit, Dawas for sipping

Dinner ~ Chicken en Adobo with Tropical Lentil Salad, Grilled Zucchini and Green Chile

Wine Pairing ~ For white, a soave or vernaccia di gimignano; for red, a rioja

Dessert ~ Grilled Mango with Honey

Equipment for this menu: Two-burner stove (one-burner will work as well); pressure cooker (I use the GSI 3.5-quart hard-anodized model, only 4 pounds, is compact, and cleans up easily); grill for campfire



Recipe from: African Kitchen by Josie Stow

Serving Size: 4

  • Crushed ice
  • 1 lime, cut in wedges
  • 8 tots vodka
  • Clear honey

Put a lime wedge in each glass and fill 3/4 full with crushed ice. Pour 2 tots vodka into each. Dip the sticks into honey and coat. Place sticks in glasses and serve.


Spiced Nuts and Fruit

Recipe adapted from: African Kitchen by Josie Stow

Serving Size: 4

The recipe calls for tossing mixed nuts (macadamia, cashew, almond, pecan, etc.) and dried fruit (prunes, apricots, cherries, etc.) in hot olive oil in a big fry pan over an open fire and then sprinkling with freshly chopped cilantro and chile and grated lime or lemon peel. If this sounds like a bit too much work, I’ve had good luck heating oil with chile to get the heat going, then tossing the nuts and fruit and sprinkling with fresh lime juice. Alternatively, sprinkle with a spice flavor mix like Penzeys Cajun Seasoning or Vindaloo curry (very hot!). I usually stock a snack bag of good-quality nuts and dried fruit mix from our Sunflower natural foods market (untreated, no salts, no coconut or cereals) that make this dish really easy.


Tropical Lentil Salad

Bananas and beans sound weird? Trust me, this is great.

Recipe adapted from African Kitchen by Josie Stow 

Serving Size: 4

  • 1 cups green lentils
  • 2 cups water
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
  • 2 bananas, semi-ripe, cubed
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 – 2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
  • salt and pepper

Lightly sauté onion, bell pepper, and garlic in a saucepot; add lentils and briefly saute. Add water, bring to boil, reduce heat and cook until done. Cool. Stir in bananas, vinegar, and cilantro (to taste). Chill if possible. 

Notes: If you don’t have cilantro, substitute with a dash of curry powder or cinnamon spice. Red wine vinegar works if you don’t have balsamic.


Grilled Zucchini and Green Chiles

Serving Size: 4

Grilled vegetables are easy and incredibly delicious. For four people, slice three medium or four small zucchini lengthwise, about 1/4″ thick. Lightly coat with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill until lightly colored with grill hash marks but not so soft they wilt. For the green chiles, toss Anaheims or similar on the grill and cook, turning often, until blackened. Put them in a covered pot or ziplock bag to steam for about 15 minutes, then the skins will slide right off. Use unpowdered nitrile gloves to handle them or tongs and forks. Slice into strips and serve with the zucchini.


Pressure Cooker Chicken en Adobo

Recipe by: Roseann Hanson

Serves: 2

Time to cook: 12 minutes plus 10 – 15 to cool down 

  • 4 chicken thighs
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, scant
  • ½ onion, sliced or diced
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 dried chipotle pepper (smoked jalapeño)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • ¼ cup low-sodium soy sauce
  • ¼ cup vinegar (cider or white wine)
  • ½ cup water 
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch

In the pressure cooker, brown the chicken in oil and remove to a plate; sauté the onions until translucent, then add the garlic, chipotle pepper, and bay leaf and sauté for just a minute or two more, until the garlic is aromatic. Pour in the soy sauce, vinegar, and water, then return the chicken. Secure the lid, following instructions for your cooker. The GSI over medium-high heat cooks at about 12 PSI. Bring to full steam, and cook for 12 minutes (less if higher PSI). While the chicken cooks and fills the air with the maddening, piquant aroma of adobo broth, finish making the salad, and slice the zucchini and toss them on the grill with a couple of green chiles. You can let stand 10 minutes or more to let off the steam and deepen flavors. Remove the chicken, add a tablespoon of cornstarch to the sauce (dissolve it first in a little water, to keep it from lumping) and simmer until thickened. Serve with warmed flour tortillas (rice is also excellent; I prefer not to have to cook too many items).

Note: after making this a couple more times, I recommend taking the skin off all but 1 of the chicken thighs, to reduce the fat. I’m not anti-animal fat, it’s just that it can be too oily tasting with full skin-on thighs. Alternatively, use breast meat or legs.


Grilled Mangoes with Honey

Serving Size: 4

Slice the sides off 2 large mangoes (the 2 hemispheres around the hard core) and then score the insides of each all the way to the skin (but not through the skin) in a grid. Paint with a little oil, then grill over a fire until nicely colored but not too dark or burned. Drizzle honey on each and serve.



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