Are you planning to do some Cajun outdoor cooking? You can really spice up your dining experience during your next camping trip by including a few (or several) tasty Cajun dishes in your menu plan. Preparing Cajun meals in the great outdoors isn't difficult, but you will need to plan ahead. Cajun outdoor cooking requires the use of certain types of equipment and seasonings, so you'll need to think about what you'd like to prepare ahead of time and pack equipment and ingredients accordingly.
Cajun Outdoor Cooking Equipment
A Cajun fryer is a must-have item for anyone who is serious about preparing Cajun recipes outdoors. This includes inividuals who enjoy cooking in their own backyards as well as during camping trips. This type of appliance can be used for a variety of purposes, from deep frying a turkey to boiling a large quantity of crawfish. Both propane gas and electric models are available. If you always stay in improved campsites with power hookups, either type is acceptable. However, if there is a chance that you will find yourself somewhere without access to electricity, a propane model is your best option.
Cast Iron Cookware
The secret to the tasty flavor of many Cajun recipes lies with preparing them in well seasoned cast iron cookware. You can use cast iron pots and pans to prepare many dishes in the great outdoors, either over an open fire or on the grill. For example, you can place your favorite gumbo recipe in a Dutch oven and allow it to simmer over an open fire suspended from a hook or tripod. Alternately, you can add Creole seasoning mix to your favorite baked bean recipe and allow it to simmer cast iron frying pan or chicken fryer on the barbecue grill.
You'll need to pack the standard accessories necessary for any type of outdoor cooking, including long handled utensils, oven mitts, and other items. You may also want to consider taking a Cajun Injector, a special syringe that allows you to inject marinade or other liquid seasonings directly into meat or vegetables. A pair of crab tongs will also come in handy if you will be boiling crawfish or some other type of seafood.
Cajun Cooking Seasonings
No matter what type of equipment you use for your Cajun outdoor cooking efforts, it's essential to properly spice the food that you are preparing. A few must-have ingredients for Cajun cooking include:
- Creole Seasoning - Use Tony Chachere's Original Creole Seasoning in your favorite recipes instead of salt and you can give any dish a Cajun flavor.It is available in regular and salt-free varieties.
- Blackened Seasoning Mix - If you're planning to go fishing the next time you go camping, consider taking along a bottle of Cajun blackened seasoning. When you sprinkle this delicious combination of spices on fish filets before grilling or cooking in a cast iron skillet, you'll be able to enjoy a delicious Cajun meal prepared in the great outdoors.
- Cajun Marinades - There are several flavors of Cajun marinade sauces available from online retailers and in supermarkets throughout the country. Using a prepared marinade is a simple way to spice up any type of meat that you will be cooking outdoors.
- Creole Roux Mix - If you'd like to make gumbo or gravy the next time you go camping but don't want to deal with creating a roux from scratch over an open campfire, consider an instant roux mix. There are several options available, including Tony Chachere's and Cajun King brands.
Cajun Cooking Recipe Resources
If you already have a stockpile of favorite Cajun recipes, it's certainly fine to use those when you are camping. If you purchase a new Cajun fryer, or other piece of cooking equipment, to use during your trip, you will likely find a small recipe booklet in the packaging materials. These recipes will probably be very easy to follow because they are written specifically for use with the particular piece of equipment that you now own.
There are also many additional resources for finding delicious Cajun recipes that you can prepare outdoors. A few places you may want to review when you are ready to start doing menu planning for your next outdoor adventure include: