Create Memorable Food and Wine Experiences in the Great Outdoors
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Cooking on a Live Fire
Few things make outdoor eating as magical as a great fire. We’re hardwired to crave that feeling but learn how to do it right for best effect.
- Fuel: hardwood charcoal is best (easy, hot, light) but you might have to make your own coals by burning wood. Either way, make sure you have ample fuel to create a bed of fire.
- Patience: wait for the coals to set as embers with few flames but constant heat and a strong glow. Don’t rush it. This is the good stuff.
- What temp?: hold your hand a few inches over where you’ll be cooking and count how long you can keep it there…
LOW (~250°F) around 8 seconds
MED (~350°F) around 5 seconds
HIGH (~500°F) only 1-2 seconds
Must Have Ingredients & Supplies
With just a few key supplies you can elevate your outdoor eating to new levels. Simple and effective.
- Seasoning: good salt, fresh pepper, garlic cloves, fresh parsley and a few pinches of magical sumac will transform simple foods into memorable flavors like the best fried egg. Ever.
- Acidity: a lemon, some vinegar or even a pinch of citrusy young pine needles can bring a new dimension to foods.
- Sharp knife: just one knife will do. Keep it sharp by honing the blade on any other metal edge you can find, even the side of a fire pit.
- Great wine: a single can of WEST + WILDER can go a long way to civilizing any outdoor dining. Light. Delicious. Beautiful.
Easy Can Be Great
Minimum prep and maximum convenience means that you have more time to soak in the beauty of your campsite, vista or backyard. It also allows you to spend more time with your guests, partner or friends.
- Shellfish: nothing beats mussels or clams on a live fire by the ocean. Cook over medium/high heat, finish with lemon, green onion and a little garlic.
- Onions & roots: toss whole veg onto low coals for a slow cook. When done, scrape off the char and enjoy the sweetness.
- Toasts: good bread toasted over a medium fire can be transformational. Rub with garlic, oil and salt and top with anything that takes your fancy or add to a simple charcuterie and cheese board.
Fire Roasted Salsa
Simple ingredients and next to no tools make this both easy and delicious as well as doable in even the wildest locations:
- A good fire
- White onion
- Salt + pepper
Place tomatoes and jalapenos directly onto mature hot embers to roast and blacken. Once cooked, scrape off char and combine with finely chopped onion. Work together using the back of a spoon then squeeze in a lemon and season to finish. Eat with chips, toasts or freshly caught seafood for best effect. Lightweight enough to carry into camp but tasty enough to demand salivated attention.
Don’t rush to cook on a young fire – wait for the coals to develop. Who needs heavy cast iron pans if the coals work just fine?
West + Wilder is the perfect accompaniment to cooking in the great outdoors. Convenient and delicious, these wines (available in White, Rosé, Sparkling White or Sparkling Rosé) pair perfectly with the open fire. Packaged in eye-catching eco-friendly cans, allowing you to leave your corkscrew at home. West + Wilder makes good wine choices both easy and rewarding; both for those who appreciate an active and outdoor lifestyle as well as those who enjoy high-quality, well-made wines. A small wine company with big world values, West + Wilder is dedicated to sustainability and committed to giving back through 1% for the Planet; donating their 1% to support the preservation of wild spaces that we all share. For more information on West + Wilder wines, visit westandwilder.com.