Thursday, June 3, 2010

Camping/ Beachside State Park

I realize that I haven't posted in awhile, lots of excuses but let me answer one thing, yes I have still been cooking. We went on a fabulous camping trip, our family goes to state parks and camps with my father's side extended family (there is about 40-50 of us every time!) It is fantastic for our miss Molly to know what a big family is like. The trips also consist of large group meals so that we can all get together and visit and eat as one. We used to have one family be in charge of cooking for everyone, which obviously had its pros and cons, now we are sticking with a theme bringing most of our own stuff and cooking together. Our first night in, again remember lots of people were rolling in at different times, we did a Top Ramen night, and I know what you are thinking really? Really, Top Ramen? But can I just say, it was fantastic! Honestly, picture cold night, large pot of water, noodles, toppings (green onions, seasoned chicken or BBQ pork, hard boiled eggs, shrimp, chili oil/ Saracha sauce etc...) I mean really the possibilities are endless. And honestly don't discount the warmth factor of eating noodles by the campfire. SO GOOD! I wish I had taken a picture it would have looked fabulous (insert here)!

Then the next day we had our infamous cocktails and hors de'ouvres, it was a fantastic offering we had everything from polenta cake pizzas, stuffed grape tomatoes, fresh (AWESOME) french fries in a dutch oven, Thai spring rolls, Union Square Cafe Bar Nuts -my offering- spicy chicken wings, bruscheta/ seafood bruscheta, cupcakes (the kids loved these) Anchovy/Tuna cracker snacks, ham cheese and salsa roll ups, ham cream cheese and pickled asparagus roll ups, and little smokies. Really quite the smorgasbord.

Then of course the cocktails! I brought homemade hard lemonade, there were scoobie snacks, 4-5-6-7's, Honey Jagger, Mango Strawberry Margaritas (strawberries picked from my cousin Trina's backyard patch! OVER ACHIEVER!) Apple Kisses, Some Kool Aide tasting drink, Cesar's??? -This was a spicy bloody Mary type drink. I can't remember any of the others, or that could be it.

Sunday night we did kabobs over the fire or on the BBQ. Trina made fantastic sticky rice, now I am going to be looking into this some more, but apparently she has her own little corner Asian market where she asked the owners how to do sticky rice. This is yet again another little reminder of how it pays to get to know people and to ask questions, it doesn't hurt to ask. Trina proceeded to get a form of rice that has no English translation (she used to be able to tell the difference because there was pink Elephant or something on the front, but now they have changed it??? If you know this rice please let me know). Also the other weird tid bit is that the owner of the Asian market proceeded to sell her a spittoon, a metal spittoon to cook the rice in. Yes, you read right, a metal spittoon! She also said a key was to soak the rice for awhile (preferably overnight). It was truly fantastic rice. So the deal was we would do our own kabobs and then there was communal rice for everyone. I did teriyaki chicken (this had been marinating for a few days) pineapple, mushrooms, red and yellow peppers. It was fantastic! But really who doesn't love kabobs?

Then scattered in there were some fantastic, FANTASTIC, breakfasts (pancakes, French toast, bacon, sausage, eggs, fresh strawberries and blueberries). We also had soup and grilled cheese, hot dogs and potato salad, seems like things just taste better while camping! Sorry this got so lengthy and with no pictures but honestly it was a great trip. Full of activities, Molly learned to pedal her trike (she isn't even two yet!) playing on the beach in the sand, Bocce ball, Ball toss (which my family calls something else... just think about it!) mini-car races, sidewalk chalk, and of course great family!

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