Where has your favourite food-blogging filthy-mouthed pirate been? Been camping, that’s where.

I guess the definition of camping could be a lot of different things to a lot of different people… much like the phrase “no, you may not enter through my back door”.

For some it is a reason to avoid showering for a few days, drink some rum, and eat mighty white and Woolies sausage sangas for every meal. For others it means they will leave home with nothing short of the Ritz Carlton in tow, hot shower and flushing toilets are not an optional extra. And for others still, a lonely goat pulling a goat skin covered wagon (made from the last lonely goat’s bretheren no less) and cooking over a campfire is their life. Gypsy carnival folk are a fine example of this… but to me it is an opportunity to relax, hang out with the fam, throw a line in, maybe go for a swim and cook up some kick-ass food in an idealic kitchen boxed in only by beautiful nature and shit.

A typical camp day goes thus; I put on my ever-so-flary Elton John sequened one-piece, spend and hour getting my hair just right, then I… oh, not that camp day! I get up early to cook the family breakfast. A personal fave is something that goes by the affectionate moniker of “camp breakfast”. Bacon, sausage, eggs, mushrooms and beans all cooked in the same pan and then served by simply chucking forks in said pan, then placing pan and a few pieces of chunky char grilled toast in front of the ravenous hoardes. With breakfast done we’ll be off for a fish or maybe an early a.m swim, then return to camp to get something cooking slowly in the camp oven* for the evening meal, and maybe whip up something for lunch while I’m there. This is usually enough to get Jennee to break the shackles of her comfy chair and good book, and hop onto a dirty old log to eat. Then it’s another fish or swim or some other kind of nature focused type activity while the evening meal gets sexy.

Fire is about the only neccessity for me when I’m camping. It conjours up memories of weekend camping trips for me as a child. And watching my kids poking the fire as I write this with a good old fashioned pen on paper type scenario, the innocent facination with the greatest discovery in our world thus far (Yeah you read that correctly! Penicilin can get fucked. I’m allergic anyway. Seriously. That stuff takes me to a bad place) is obvious. They are addicted… as am I… as was my father… and his father before him. And yes, it is all fun until someone steps on a hot coal. But that is a lesson very quickly learned if your IQ is anything above 4.

Get the kids to put the tent up and get yourself a beer

Get the kids to put the tent up and get yourself a beer

Make a little mix of sea salt and pepper to take with you. We are not heathens!

Make a little mix of sea salt and pepper to take with you. We are not heathens!

chicken and lamb with tomato, onion, carrot and anchovies

chicken and lamb with tomato, onion, carrot and anchovies

Cook it in the camp oven

Cook it in the camp oven

I want to eat that

I want to eat that… and the potatoes that are roasting in the coals in the background

I am going to eat that

I am going to eat that

I am eating that

I am eating that

To quote Aussie box office hit of the ‘90s, The Castle, “how’s the serenity”

To quote Aussie box office hit of the ‘90s, The Castle, “how’s the serenity”

We didn’t even brush our teeth. Mostly because I forgot the tooth brushes,but we happily piggy backed in a “stick it to the man” with that. Don’t tell Jennee though because she’s pretty picky about oral… hygeine that is.

*the camp oven. A large cast iron pot with lid, for cooking on an open fire. The Australian version of the witches couldron.