Wisconsin Natural Resources magazine

Wisconsin Natural Resources magazine

Kebabs on skewers © Kathryn A. Kahler

Using skewers is just one way to cook over a campfire.
© Kathryn A. Kahler

December 2013

More than s'mores

Kick up your camping fare with "Easy Campfire Cooking."

Kathryn A. Kahler

There's no need to put up with the same old stand-by recipes when planning your summer camping trips. Get yourself a copy of Georgia Pellegrini's cookbook, "Easy Campfire Cooking" (Fox Chapel Publishing, 2012), and you'll be eating gourmet foods by a lantern rather than candlelight.

If you're like me, you might hesitate to buy yet another cookbook to gather dust on your bookshelf. But this one is so versatile, you might want to buy two #&8212; one for the camper and one to keep in the kitchen. Pelligrini embraces our differences and has delicious recipes for the hot-dog-on-a-stick aficionados as well as the Dutch oven experts among us.

Easy "Fireside Pizza"

No need to forego the Saturday night pizza when you're spending it under the stars. Just remember to pack the tri-pod and foil and you can whip up a pizza over the flames.


Makes 4 to 6 servings

  • 1 (13 or 14 oz.) tube prepared pizza crust
  • 1 (14 ½ oz.) can pizza sauce
  • 1 (8 oz.) pkg. shredded cheese — any kind Pizza toppings, such as pepperoni slices, tomatoes, mushrooms, green peppers, etc.

Cover the grilling grate with aluminum foil. Place grate over campfire. Place prepared pizza crust on aluminum foil on grill. Top crust with pizza sauce, shredded cheese and pizza toppings of choice. Cook pizza until cheese is melted.

Recipes printed with permission from Fox Chapel Publishing.

Over 200 recipes are divided by method into chapters for cooking with a stick, skewers and kebabs, foil packets for hobo-style, pie iron, skillet, Dutch oven, or on a grate. You’ll find breakfasts, soups and stews, main dishes, sides and desserts that range from simple to challenging.

If your utensil of choice is a stick, you might try "Sausage and Toast on a Stick" for breakfast. Just spear a brownand- serve sausage link and wrap it with a refrigerated breadstick, seal the ends and brown over hot embers. If pie iron cookery is your forte, check out “Sweet Peach Pocket,” for a scrumptious dessert. Butter the outsides of two slices of bread, tuck a peach half and marshmallow inside, place in the pie iron and hold in the flames. Don’t forget to bring the powdered sugar to dust on top. For Dutch oven die-hards, there’s "Ham & Cabbage Stew," "One-Pot Lasagna" or "Big Pond Soup," to name a few.

Cover of Cook Book © Fox Chapel Publishing

The thing I love about the book is that you can use many of the recipes at home — in the oven, stovetop or on the grill. The "Beer Brat Sticks" and "Potato Wedges" make a great summer meal on the patio.

With the holiday season fast approaching, consider this idea for your camper friends or family members. Go to the Friends of Wisconsin State Parks website (FWSP.org) and click on "FWSP Store." You can choose to buy the book for $12.95 or as part of several gift packages that may include a 2014 state park sticker, a gift subscription to Wisconsin Natural Resources magazine and other options. Bon appetit!

Kathryn A. Kahler is an editorial writer for Wisconsin Natural Resources magazine.