It is often thought that cooking a great meal to compete with a home-cooked Sunday roast, in the great outdoors, is an impossible task. Most will settle for a tin of beans or some plain pasta on their expedition. However, there are many exciting and fun ways to cook a filling and energising meal in the wilderness.
Before your expedition
Firstly, you must ensure you have the right equipment to aid your cookery skills. The DofE recommends the Trangia stove system. The simplicity of the stove means it is extremely easy to use and stable, even on uneven ground. The whole system packs away into the windshield and is light and quick to assemble, leaving more time to cook and enjoy your meal.
All Trangia systems come with a built-in windshield, meaning a windy day up on a hill won’t hinder you having a warm meal. Just turn the system to/from the wind so that the holes in the bottom windshield let air flow through without dampening the flame. View DofE Recommended Trangia stoves.
Your Trangia stove will use gas, bio-gel or methylated spirits (meths) as fuel. Make sure you have been trained using fuels and are comfortable in doing so. View DofE Recommended fuels.
Ready to cook?
Make sure you take some time to pick the cooking location. A firm level surface at ground level where the stove will not be knocked over is ideal and it must be at least two metres away from tents and flammable items. For more stove safety instructions, download the DofE Stove Safety PDF.
Here are a few of our favourite recipes that you can make using your Trangia stove:
Dried rolled oats
Fruit and nuts
1. Heat up the water in your Trangia stove.
2. Add in the powered milk as per the instructions.
3. Stir in your oats and museli.
4. Add in fruit and nuts.
5. Stir until all combined and serve.
Vegetable pasta soup:
Carrots (grated beforehand)
Potato (chopped into small cubes)
Onion (chopped into small cubes)
1. Boil a pot of water on your Trangia stove.
2. Add in your pre prepared vegetables, stock and pasta. Let simmer for 10-15 minutes.
3. Serve up the hearty vegetable pasta soup! – It will give you energy plenty of energy to carry on with your expedition.
Pack of ready-made crepe mixture (just add water)
Marshmallows or fruit
1. Prepare pancake mixture as per the instructions on packet.
2. Using a clean pan, pour a small amount of the crepe mixture to cover the base of your pan.
3. When bubbles start to appear on top of your pancake, run your spork around the edges and flip the crepe over to cook the other side.
4. Add the chocolate spread and marshmallows or fruit.
5. Fold it in half and place on to your plate and enjoy!
Once you have had a delicious meal, you need to ensure a couple of things before packing up.
Firstly, you must check that any excess fuel is safely stored or disposed of in an eco-friendly way. Some fuels are ok to pour away but you must check the packaging before doing so. If you have opted for a Non-Stick or Hard Anodised Trangia, cleaning is super quick and easy but make sure you do it once the stove is cool and before you go to bed to avoid the local wildlife coming for dinner!
Secondly, leave no trace. Make sure you collect any rubbish you have at the camp site. This can be stored in a plastic bag attached to your rucksack to stop your clothes from getting smelly. You can then dispose of this at the first bin you find. After you have double checked your campsite and made sure you haven’t left anything, continue with your rewarding expedition; an experience like no other.