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Category: Menu Planning & Cooking

Thanksgiving: Giving Thanks for Our RV Lifestyle

November 27, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Thanksgiving: Giving Thanks for Our RV Lifestyle

Many will be on the road traveling today and throughout this Thanksgiving weekend. Thanksgiving is the biggest travel weekend in America, and RVers are out in force, back on the road, crossing the country in their RVs to spend Thanksgiving with family and friends. And many Snowbirds are traveling south to their favorite Sunbelt roost to avoid the rigors of another northern winter. I have so much to be thankful for! I give thanks to my partner—my wife Dania, my co-pilot—and our family and friends. With a lifelong love of travel, a condo-on-wheels has always been our destiny. Yes, we’re living our dream! We’ve wintered in Southern California, Arizona, Texas, Florida, and Alabama. Our RV travels have taken us to over 40 states and four western provinces. I am thankful as Canadian Snowbirds that we have the opportunity of celebrating Thanksgiving in October (Canadian Thanksgiving) and again in November. Thanksgiving offers the opportunity to reflect on life, liberty, and the pursuit... [Read more...]

Put Your Passion on Your Plate

November 24, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Put Your Passion on Your Plate

When Hank Williams wrote Jambalaya in 1952, he captured the essence of the Cajun self-proclaimed passion for good food and good friends. Longfellow-Evangeline State Historic Site in St. Martinsville explores the cultural interplay among the diverse peoples along the famed Bayou Teche. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved The Acadians who settled in the bayous and swamps of Southern Louisiana developed a unique and authentic cooking style. Louisiana has an appetite for food, music, and fun that is best summed up in the Cajun phrase laissez les bons temps rouler—let the good times roll. Based on a survey of 1.3 million people across the country, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ranked Louisiana as the nation’s happiest state. Many reasons likely led to this distinction, but I’m certain that the Bayou State’s incredible cuisine played a major role. Bite into boudin and see if a smile doesn’t break out. Here, you don’t just eat. You dine with gusto. Cajun Country Cajun... [Read more...]

The convenience of a coffee machine

September 12, 2013 by · 5 Comments 

The convenience of a coffee machine

Starting tomorrow in Canada, it’s the anniversary sale at Wal-Mart.   And on the first page of the flyer, our eyes saw the special for a Keurig machine like the one we have at home.   69$ Canadian.  Hmmmm.   We are seriously thinking of purchasing one of the trailer when we are away from home. Like I mentioned, we have one at home but bringing it back and forth is a little bit inconvenient.   The risk of breaking it increases as well.   We use the one at home often – whether to make coffee, tea or simply boiling water.   My husband especially likes it when we have to boil water for noodles.  We put a bit in the bottom of the pot and start the top of the oven.  Then with the help of the Keurig and the kettle, we boil water and incorporate it in the pot.   Seems silly at first hand but we find that the boiling process is faster when we do so. At the trailer, we have a dinky kettle that sings when it reaches the boiling level when it’s on the gas oven.   It’s my... [Read more...]

Tefal Actifry – a fabulous appliance to have

June 3, 2013 by · 1 Comment 

Tefal Actifry – a fabulous appliance to have

May 2013 – Linen Chest, a chain of store in Canada, is having a new contest.   Actually it is their first ever Pin It and Win It contest especially created to celebrate Mother’s Day.   The contest was simple.  All I had to do was to like their contest page, follow their Pinterest account, pin the items I really like from their Mother’s Day Contest, and voilà.    Since I had a Pinterest account, I pinned a few things in a board with my wish list of things I would like to have.   Once I was done I sort of forgot about it… Mother’s Day came and went by.   Fast forward to two weeks ago and I realized that I have a message in my junk folder.   As I check it out I realized that I won the prize for the contest – a 250$ gift card at Linen Chest.  All I had to do was to let them know which store was closest to me.   I emailed them and waited for their reply. Meanwhile, I wondered what we could purchase… New towels?  Costco has better prices on these.  New small... [Read more...]

7 Tips for Planning a Successful Camping Trip

May 20, 2013 by · 2 Comments 

7 Tips for Planning a Successful Camping Trip

If you are going on a camping trip planning is essential. Camping at Arches National Park, Utah. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved Whether you are a retired senior planning the trip of a lifetime, a snowbird, family looking for an economical way to vacation, or a couple looking to get away from the stresses of the work week, camping provides the perfect alternative to the conventional holiday. It also allows you to experience the fresh air that camping in the countryside offers and to meet new friends. But like any getaway, whether it’s for a weekend, a month, or an extended period, camping requires careful preparation to ensure all goes smoothly. When you think of what you’ll need for a road trip, a common list unfolds. Food, beverages, snacks, paper products, lawn chairs, maps, and GPS are all normal items you might bring along. Packing List The night before leaving on the camping trip will be less hectic if you plan ahead what to pack. Be careful not to over pack, take only... [Read more...]

Mexican S’mores, a new camping tradition…

April 30, 2013 by · 3 Comments 

Mexican S’mores, a new camping tradition…

Last summer, some family friends shared with us a special treat that has now become one of our favorite ever desserts!  We reserve it to ‘camping’, and don’t do it very often so that it stays ‘special’. We had never heard of Mexican S’mores before!   They are a slight twist on regular s’mores; I don’t care for s’mores generally… I like a few marshmallows roasted golden brown with the insides all mushy, but I don’t like traditional s’mores.     For Mexican S’mores, you need the typical s’more’s chocolate and marshmallows, but instead of graham crackers, you’ll want to have tortillas, butter (we only use the real thing – have you ever read about margarine???? :p), and aluminum foil. . Mexican S’mores are super easy to make, and a favorite of all ages!     Spread softened butter thinly on one side of each tortilla, then place marshmallows and chocolate (we usually... [Read more...]

Alabama Mardi Gras Comes to Kentucky

January 22, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

To escape winter in north-central Kentucky, we decided to head south to the Gulf Coast and chose an RV park near Gulf Shores, Alabama, for the month of January. As we toured the area, we noticed that slowly the Christmas decorations were being replaced by Mardi Gras colors. Rex, the King of Carnival, selected the Mardi Gras colors in 1892. Purple stands for justice, green for faith, and gold for power. Wreaths, banners, tinsel swags and signs started appearing in shop windows and on homes. Trees were redecorated with new ornaments and garlands in those special hues. Stores displayed hats, beads and party supplies. Bakeries hung signs encouraging hostesses to “Order Your King Cake Now!” King cake is a brioche-type pastry, rolled or braided into a circle. It is flavored with cinnamon and sugar-frosted in Mardi Gras colors. A token — a coin, a bean, or a tiny plastic baby — is hidden inside. Whoever gets the token is the king or queen of the party. Nowadays most bakeries won’t put... [Read more...]

There’s Still More to Love about Texas Food

January 7, 2013 by · 2 Comments 

There’s Still More to Love about Texas Food

Texans take their food as seriously as they do their football. Many Winter Texans and other visitors to the Lone Star State have the good sense to agree with them—that Texan food is that of the gods. 1. Po Po Family Restaurant Bright neon letters spell “CHICKEN, STEAKS, SEAFOOD” across the rock exterior of Po Po Family Restaurant. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved Bright neon letters spell “CHICKEN, STEAKS, SEAFOOD” across the rock exterior of Po Po Family Restaurant, just off I-10, 37 miles north of San Antonio at the Welfare exit #533. The neon and the notice tell you what to expect at Po Po’s: a menu that requires no translation, featuring traditional American and Southern fare, cooked to order. Po Po is not just your ordinary restaurant. This eatery has a unique history with a cast of unique characters and circumstances, a matchless plate collection, as well as some of the best food in the Texas Hill County. The warmth and hospitality are hard to beat. If you have ever... [Read more...]

Giving Thanks On the Road

November 21, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Giving Thanks On the Road

Fall can be the most beautiful time of the year to camp. The seasons are changing and campgrounds and RV parks are not as packed with vacationers as they may be during summer months. If you are fortunate enough to have the time for travel in late November, you could have the unique experience of celebrating Thanksgiving on the road. However, preparing an entire Thanksgiving feast in a camper or RV can be a daunting task and rife with unique complications. If you travel in a large vehicle with a full size oven, your solution may be obvious and your problems, minimal. However, if you are a tent camper or have a smaller travel trailer, as we do, you could experience multiple issues in attempting to achieve your usual spread. Our small 18’ camper certainly contains an adequate kitchen area to meet our usual camping needs: a two burner stove, a small sink and a refrigerator. Indeed, it feels luxurious after many years of tent camping. However, we have no oven in which to cook the turkey. If... [Read more...]

Butterflied Turkey a la RV

November 13, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Last year we celebrated our first Thanksgiving in the RV and I knew I was going to fix a turkey no matter what.  We have a convection oven and I knew the only hurdle I would need to overcome was the size of the turkey.  So, if you’re new to RVing or have not tried cooking a turkey inside your RV, let me share how easy it is. I saw a recipe about butterflying a turkey and I knew that would work for us.  Butterflying would help reduce the height of the turkey allowing it to be on the rack in the convection oven.  I found that a 12 lb. turkey works well.  Once butterflied, the glaze goes on beautifully leaving us with a moist tender turkey. 12 lb. turkey 2 Tbls. salt 2 tsp. pepper 2 tsp. baking powder 2 onions Glaze: 3 cups apple juice 1 cup whole fresh cranberries ¾ cup Maple Syrup 1 Tbls. grated fresh ginger 1 Tbls. mustard Remove giblets and neck from turkey.  Rinse the inside of the turkey and pat dry.  Place the turkey breast side down on a non-slippery surface. With a sharp... [Read more...]

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