Tag Archives: rv cooking

RV Kitchen Storage Solutions

Keeping our RV refrigerators packed full of our favorite fresh fruits and vegetables is not realistic due to the high potential of food spoilage. However, there is a way we can stock our pantries with a wider variety of foods that is lighter in weight than canned goods. It is through the simple process of dehydration. By dehydrating we extract moisture from fruits, vegetables and even meats we can get more into a smaller footprint in our RV.

Here are some Dehydrating facts:

  • The most natural way to prevent food from spoiling is through preserving it through dehydration.
  • It is a proven fact that dehydrating your foods saves you money.  Buying in bulk at a Farmers Markets or while it is in season is very cost effective and nothing’s better than organic home grown fruits & vegetables.
  • When done properly, foods can last for months and even years.
  • Reconstituting foods with water or other desired liquids will only take 5 to 20 minutes depending on the temperature of the liquids.
  • It is a perfect option if you are into the healthier lifestyle.

What a wonderful thought – Imagine going out to the campsite after a long week of work at your 8 to 5 job and not having to spend valuable family time going to the grocery store for supplies.  All your food prep has been achieved through dehydration and you bring all your meals with you in your RV in a small footprint of storage.

RV Kitchen Storage Solutions- Getting More Into a Smaller Footprint

Find this and more of my RV kitchen blogs at www.AmeriGoRV.com

 


Sheila’s Cheesy Potato Soup Recipe

Recipe from The RV Centennial Cookbook – Celebrating 100 Years RVing, Page 55

 

Submitted by – Sheila Boggess of Prairie Hill, Texas – In her youth, Sheila camped with neighbors who owned a pop-up RV.  She recalls even now…. her memories of RVing are still her favorites, after all these years.  

Sheila’s Cheesy Potato Soup

Ingredients:

-6 or 7 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
-water to cover potatoes while cooking
-1 pint sour cream (note: using fat-free sour cream does not make the soup as smooth, but it tastes the same and is healthier)
-1 lb. Mexican Velveeta, cubed; regular Velveeta can be used, if preferred
-real bacon bits or crumble several slices of cooked bacon
-green onions (chopped)

Instructions:
Cover peeled, cubed potatoes with water in a large pot or Dutch oven. (Use more water for thinner soup.) When potatoes are tender, add sour cream and cubes of Velveeta. Heat over low heat, stirring nonstop. When cheese is melted, soup is ready. Add green onions and bacon bits just before serving.

 

Note from Lady E Cooper: I personally have made this potato soup many times. Not only does it taste delicious….it is easy for the RV kitchen – only 20 minutes cooking time. Plus, it’s one of my favorites for the cooler months. I hope it will become one of your favorite RV recipes, as well.  My personal tip is to serve this soup up in to your favorite bread bowl… then sit around the campfire to enjoy!

 

The RV Centennial Cookbook is available for purchase on Amazon.com

RV Kitchen Appliances

RV Kitchen Appliances

Must Have List vs. Wish List

Equates to: 30 Amps vs. 50 Amps

How much electrical power is needed for those small appliances planned for your RV kitchen?

  1. Make two lists – Label one ‘Must Have’ and the other ‘Wish’ list.  Coffee pot, crockpot, electric skillet, hand mixer, toaster – you’ll find these lists will add up quickly.
  2. Things to know – There are two measurements of power for RVs.

–          30 amps delivers 3600 watts of power

–          50 amps delivers 12,000 watts of power

3. Located on the back of each appliance is an electrical data plate. This information is telling us of the amount of power (electricity) required.

4. To measure the complete electrical requirement need’s for an RV – we will allocate watts for one air conditioner (2400 watts on startup) and the water heater element (1500 watts).  Both of these appliances will cycle on and off which means the demand on the watts are not constant.  Watts total – 3900.

When adding the watts needed from our lists, the 3600 watts of power given by a 30 amp power cord is depleted, even before getting started.

Ask yourself – What is my lifestyle?  A minimalist will require less and the 30 amps could be sufficient. Are the ‘must have’ and ‘wish’ lists vital to you? 50 amps power is probably the way to go.

Your perfect RV kitchen should be able to handle the electrical power needs of your small appliance ‘must haves’ and ‘wish’ lists, so shop wise.

 


Jalapeno Corn Dip

I have served this recipe many times in my restaurant days. Now, it is served for just a few… gathered around the campfire …to a large potluck group – this recipe will always be…. a real crowd pleaser.

Ingredientscorndip-1024x685

  •     1/2 cup sour cream
  •     1/2 cup mayonnaise (the real stuff)
  •     1/2 cup salsa (or picante)
  •     1/4 tsp black pepper
  •     1/2 tsp garlic powder
  •     2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  •     14.5oz can sweet kernel corn, drained
  •     2 jalapenos, seeded and chopped
  •     Tortilla chips

 

Instructions:

Jalapeno Corn Dip

Mix all ingredients and refrigerate for several hours to let flavors combine. Like a little less spice? Take out the jalapeno. Like a little more? Add more jalapeno and a spicier salsa! Serve with tortilla chips.

This recipe comes from: ShugarySweets.com

RV Kitchens – Which Is Right For You?

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While the RV type, the price or the floor plan may drive the RV buying decision, statistics show that the two most critical items in today’s RV are the Kitchen and the Bathroom.

Whether you purchase your RV new or used or whether you are a full timer or a weekender.  Family, Friends and Food make up the recipe of the successful RVing experience. So choosing the right RV Kitchen is essential to being a Happy Camper.

Regardless if you are a gourmet cook that loves to plan and prepare meals ahead of time or you are someone who just wings it with the microwave and a campfire here are 3 things to consider.

1. Storage – RV kitchens have limited space and most kitchens have very narrow and shallow cabinets for storage. Know how much space you must have for your food and utensils. On RV shopping day take a small measuring tape with you to size up the storage areas. Check the depth behind those cabinet doors and in drawers.    

2. Space for Food Prep – Look for counter space around the stove top and sink area. Is there enough room for your recipe books, bowls, pots and utensils?  In some kitchens the only food prep area is on the dining table.  If you require more space – shop accordingly.

3. Clean up area – Do you require a full size sink? What about a place for draining the dishes?  Clean-up is a must. How much space do you need?

 Keeping a critical eye on these three areas will help in finding the RV kitchen that is right for you.

 

NOTE: This blog is among many that I have written for AmeriGO RV Club.  Please go check them out.  They provide valuable information for the all of us RV enthusiast.

Lady E Cooper

RV Refrigerator Facts

We just finishing up the CrossRoads RV Rally in Shipshewana, Indiana, we had a great time giving educational seminars and just hRV Refrigeratoranging out with a great group of folks. 

As I reflect on all the questions that we were asked during our seminars – the Absorption RV Refrigerator is still the number one topic of all.  So, I thought I would provide more information on how to help this appliance work more efficiently with providing some great facts that you may not be aware of.

  • ·         Compressor vs. Absorption type refrigerators – there is a big different. The compressor (residential-type) is an electric motor with a refrigerant pump, whereas, absorption (RV) is done through chemicals and heat.

 

  • ·         Recovery time is vastly different from our residential units. For every minute the door is left open – it will take one hour to recover the cold air lost.

 

  • ·         RV refrigerators cool better when there are a fair amount of items being stored. However, over packing is a bad thing – temps will go up because of lack of airflow. Try to keep your refrigerator stocked well without over packing.

 

  • ·         For cooling properly these 3 things are needed:  Is it level? Is there proper ventilation? Do you have a heat source ( i.e. propane or electric)?

 

  • ·         It is not critical to have the refrigerator level while traveling. The rolling and pitching movement of the RV helps the refrigerator operate efficiently.

 

  • ·         To check for proper temperature, place a cup of water with a thermometer inside the cup. Wait 2 to 3 hours to check if the unit is already cooled down. If hot (unplugged), turn on and wait to check after 8 to 24 hours.

 

  • ·         Most refrigerators will have at least one auxiliary fan on the back side, check to make sure it is working properly.  If more air flow is needed – add an additional fan(s).

 

  • ·         If the odor of ammonia is present with a yellow film coating on the back side of the refrigerator, the cooling coil seal is broken.  This means the coils will need to be replaced.

 

  • ·         8 cubic foot and larger units should be at least 43 degrees F. or less at 110 degrees F.

 

  • ·         Proper temperature for the freezer is 0 degrees F. and inside the main cooling box is 37 – 42 degrees F.

 

  • ·         Place ice cream at the coldest part of the freezer which is the lower left side.  

I do hope you now have a better understanding of the Absorption RV Refrigerator.  Happy RVing!

Reuben Sandwich Recipe

Let’s make GREAT Reuben sandwiches together!!

Reuben2

Photo Source – Google

This is my personal Reuben sandwich Recipe from the deli that I owned and still make them this way today. If you have a nice size flat solid surface griddle for your outside grill, that’s perfect! Or for inside – use an electric griddle.

  •  Reuben sandwiches are typically made with rye bread.  I like to use the marble rye but you can use any type of bread you would like.  (2 slices per sandwich)
  •  My favorite meats to use are:  Thinly sliced Peppered pastrami and lean corned beef – Using one or both – using a ¼ to 1/3 lb per sandwich (I like piling the meats high!)
  •  American Swiss Cheese (2 slices per sandwich) Regular Swiss can be used, too.
  • Sauerkraut -½ cup or a little more– the type of sauerkraut is going to be your personal choice. Mine is Bavarian which has a touch of sweetness with the tart and has caraway seeds. (Yummy!)
  • My favorite dressing is Thousand Island dressing (if you like a little sweet) or Brown Spicy Mustard (if you like it on the tart side) each works well on the Reuben.

On a bigger sized (325 degree) hot griddle….brush with a light coat of oil of your choice (so nothing will stick).  Visually, we are dividing the griddle in thirds. Making one sandwich at a time, place your sauerkraut on first one-third, meat(s) on the middle third and the 2 slices of rye bread on the outer third.  Getting everything piping hot and your bread lightly toasted is our objected.

For assembly: lay a slice of cheese on one slice of grilled bread. Place your HOT sauerkraut down first (on top of the cheese) then add the dressing of choice (my dressings are kept in a squeeze bottle so I can easily apply). Next, add your HOT grilled meats, and then top with the remaining slice of cheese…then another slice of grilled bread.  Leaving the sandwich on the grill a little longer, turning once…allows the cheese to melt into the meat(s) and sauerkraut.  (This forces the moisture from the sauerkraut to stay inside the sandwich and away from the bread) This assembly will need to go fast…so be prepared.  If you see your bread getting too dark then move it off to the side and assemble there…but put back on the grill when totally assembled to heat the cheese. Slice in half and serve.  You will find that this is a tasty way to make Reuben sandwiches …and you will want to serve them often.  Adds chips and a pickle spear and you have a great meal.

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Peach Cobbler Recipe

I made this recipe to serve along side the Professor’s birthday cake …..this past weekend.  Oh, so delicious !!!  Wishing my husband, Terry Cooper a very Happy Birthday!!  (In my opinion – When we get to a certain age, we can celebrate birthday weeks!!)
For the cobbler:
1/2 cup (1 stick)of butter
1 cup of sugar
3/4 cup self-rising flour
(or 3/4 cup of all purpose flour w/ 2 tsps of baking powder)
3/4 cup of milk
For the fruit:
1 can (28 ounce) peaches in heavy syrup,
OR
2 cups of fresh sliced peaches
1 cup of sugar
1 cup of water1 tbsp cinnamon (for sprinkling on top)
1 tbsp of nutmeg (for sprinkling on top)
2 tbsp of sugar (for sprinkling on top)

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
Put the butter in a 13 x 9 x 2 inch baking dish and place in the oven until the butter melts. Remove from oven and set aside.

In a bowl, mix together the flour and sugar and stir in the milk. Batter will have a few lumps but that’s okay.

Pour the batter on top of the melted butter.

If using fresh Georgia peaches, put fresh sliced peaches, sugar and water in a saucepan and bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for about 10 minutes.  I used the fresh peaches that I ‘canned’  last summer; I stored in 2-cup packages using the  FoodSaver V3835 Vacuum Food Sealer with SmartSeal Technology, Silver/Black then placed them in the freezer.  They were as fresh tasting  as when I stored them away last summer.  This is always a great way to store fresh fruit for use any time of the year.

Spoon fruit on top of batter and then slowly pour the liquid on top of that. Be careful not to mix the fruit INTO the batter. Sprinkle with cinnamon.

Bake for 35 to 45 minutes. Batter will rise to the top while baking to make an amazing crust!  I know you will enjoy this recipe as much as I do. We do love this Peach Cobbler Recipe here in Texas!!

I also enjoy using my FoodSaver and take it inside my RV kitchen everywhere I go!!

Convection Microwave Oven for RV

Baking with convection ovens all 15 years that I had my restaurant  in my hometown of Rockdale, TX  ….I found I enjoyed this type of baking because of its appearance that this was a professional type of baking. With a fan mounted on the side or back of these huge ovens…air circulated around the food and the results were wonderful. Tops and bottoms of the cookies, bread pudding, cakes, pies and sorted breads…all were evenly brown and cooked to perfection.  Now that we find them these types of ovens in our RVs today…..I am over joyed!!!

 convection-built-in-microwave-oven-9722-1822283

What is  the definition of a  convection oven?  (from Widipedia) A convection oven (or fan-assist oven, fan oven) is an oven that has fans to circulate air around food.[1] Conventional ovens, which do not have fans, rely primarily on radiation from the oven walls, and to a lesser extent, on natural convection caused by temperature differences within the oven, to transfer heat to food. In contrast, the fans in convection ovens allow more heat to be transferred via convective heat transfer. Fans help distribute heat evenly around the food, removing the blanket of cool air that surrounds food in an oven, allowing food to cook more evenly in less time and at a lower temperature than in a conventional oven.

I believe  for the most part, people have trouble with convection cooking because of how they are now connected to our microwaves. We basically have used the microwave for heating purposes  or at least very little cooking, never being able to use any types of metal cookware inside and if  you did…horrible things would happen!!!  Today we can throw that type of thinking out the window, for the convection microwave oven will allow you to use most any type of cookware that can withstand high heat.

Important: Just like before… when using a low wattage microwave…slower heating or cooking would occur, the same holds true with this new RV convection microwave oven design we have today.  Take a look at the data plate located on the inside around the door opening.  I find that convection microwaves start at 900 watts and run up to about 1500 watts.  Higher wattage means faster and more energy efficient cooking.

Convection microwaves will brown and cook the outside of your foods penetrating to the center vs. regular microwaves emit waves that bounce around until they come in contact with the food causing water molecules to excite and generate heat which then cooks the food.

Now for the inside convection micropreparation of using a convection microwave; I know from what I have learned that the lower sided dishes, pans, etc. …..are ‘best’ to use.  For example, casserole rounds or squares.  However, I have used my bundt pan for cakes…and they turn out fine. You will have to experiment with your own unit to see how it works best for you.

Remember, you should always use the circular metal lift tray (that will come with the unit) placing your dish on top of it so complete circulation of air will occur.  If your unit is used and you did not get a lift tray then you will need to purchase one online or at a specialty store. I have found them online for around $20- $25.  Some of you may have a metal tray that reaches from side to side that hangs on plastic hooks. This is for double dish baking and/or using those 9×13 dishes or some other size that prevents you from using the circular lift tray. When you using the lift that fits from side to side, know that you will need to stop your unit half way through the cooking process and rotate because it is imperative to allow the air to transfer over the item evenly. (Note: if you don’t turn the dish…. there is a good possibility that your food will burn.)IMAG0310

All convection/microwaves are real good about just allowing you to plug in the baking information it requires. First, preheating is a must. With good clean electricity, preheat time should be around 10 to 13 minutes.  Place the lift tray inside during the preheat stage.  Once it beeps letting you know the preheat is complete, place the dish inside and set the cooking time. Higher wattage will require less time (about 25% less) or the drop in temperature used (about 25%).  Lower wattage units will remain the same and in some cases require more time than what is stated on the recipe. Again, you will have to experiment with your unit to see what works best.

You can use aluminum foil inside your unit on convection settings.   I suggest not to use in very high temps (over 400 degrees) and pass this information on to others as a ‘safe’ procedure.

This unit will do combination cooking also, where you can use convection cooking for a time and then cook with the microwave, as well.  70% of the power comes from the convection baking…..and 30% comes from the microwave.  Use this setting when your recipes calls for an hour or more of cooking time. Using this feature will reduce your cooking time by about 25%.  If the cooking time is 45 minutes or less….just use the convection baking only.

There is so much to learn about convection baking that I will have to continue to write about in the future.  I do hope that you will use your RV

Convection Microwave Oven RV – learn to use it to the fullest capabilities because it does do a beautiful job and is a wonderful alternative to the propane oven.

Happy RVing!

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