Sunday, June 30, 2019

BYO Summer Cabin Cooking

For our annual summer retreat in the hills of West Virginia, we bring our own food. The one room cabin, built by the CCC during the Great Depression, has a fully stocked kitchen. We pack a large cooler with plenty of ice blocks and take everything we need for a 3 night and 4 day stay. My major foods are purchased from our local Farmer's Market. Free range chicken and beef, eggs and squash, garlic, green onions, red potatoes and carrots were all readily available. I brought every vegetable in my cooler! I was saving those petite fillets (seen above) for this special occasion and added them frozen to our cooler along with a blended beef-mushroom-carrot mix that I froze a few weeks ago. Since I wasn't sure when we'd be able to check in to our cabin, I baked a chicken breast the day before, sliced and took for the first lunch meal. Before leaving our home, I snipped some of all my herbs from the container garden on the deck and brought in a zipper bag at room temperature. My dinner menus were as follows:

Petite Fillets
Herbed Sliced Summer Vegetables
Spelt Muffins

Mexicana Shrimp Kabobs
Multigrain Bread

Blended Meatloaf
Roasted New Red Potatoes

The blended beef, mushroom and vegetable recipe I used was one I usually make into meatballs. I baked it in an oval loaf shape along with new potatoes.  The loaf had 1/2 pound of ground beef (& equal parts of vegetables). We ate half of it the first night and had the rest to slice for lunch the next 2 days.  

For the kabobs, I mixed the dry seasonings and transported in a large zipper bags. I portioned the lemon juice-olive oil into a small container with a lid to add  to the seasonings along with the shrimp and vegetables 1 hour before baking, This is an easy recipe, and I simply pulled the frozen raw shrimp from the freezer and threw in the cooler the morning of the trip.

Mexicana Shrimp & Vegetable Kabobs

(Serves 2)

Peel shrimp, leaving tail intact.  Clean and cut vegetables.
12 jumbo, tail on, raw shrimp
6-8 baby portobello mushrooms, halved or quartered, depending on size
1 zucchini squash, sliced in 3/4 inch pieces
6-8 mini red and orange sweet peppers, seeded and cut in half

Mix marinade ingredients.
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon oregano leaves

Place shrimp and vegetables in a large zipper storage bag.  Pour over marinade.
Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. 

Assemble kabobs, alternating colors on skewers.  Bake at 325 F. for 15 minutes.

The chicken breast I prebaked for our first lunch was seasoned using this recipe.  
We need no recipe for the meal pictured at the top, made the first night of our trip. The wood kindling in the fire added a nice smoked taste to both the meal and vegetables. I added the fresh herbs I brought from home and the meal was a real treat.

Breakfasts daily included eggs over easy, sometimes enjoyed for one dinner a week at home. Bob brought his frozen biscuits and I my spelt muffins. I took a cantaloupe, apples and grapes for fruit. On the last night of our stay, we went to the park restaurant and shared the homemade blackberry cobber (a la mode).

We plan to return to Holly River State Park, in Webster County, West Virginia year after year. It's the biggest park in the state land wise. There are 10 cabins-we've stayed in 4-and so look forward to the entire stay.

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