While the Classic VW BusLife is our passion, we are the first to admit that there isn’t a great deal of country kitchen space for feeding the five thousand. Sure, all Classic VW Bus lovers have their pantry stocked with firm favorites – pasta, pesto, maybe an unwrinkled tomato if you are lucky. But for those looking to avoid the perils of scurvy and to bring a touch of gourmet flair back to their mini cooking stoves, we have rounded up some delightfully easy dishes for small space cooking beneath the stars.
Savory Stuffed Crepes
You don’t need to be crossing the wild coastline of Bretagne to indulge in crisp French crepes. While you may think the humble crepe is nothing more than a sweet and simple breakfast snack, you can stuff them full of wonders making for a more than satisfying meal to satiate even the hungriest of your Classic VW BusLife crew.
Hit the farmers markets to stock up on seasonal splendor; wild mushrooms, plump spinach, fluffy broccoli or zesty asparagus, crumbled cheese, and even a drizzle of comforting cream sauce or pesto.
Start with the batter; whisk together 3/4 of a cup of flour with a cup of milk, crack an egg into the mix, and add a dash of baking powder and a pinch of salt. Stir it all together until you get a smooth consistency.
Next gently fry up your vegetables in a glob of melted butter, adding seasoning and herbs as you go. When your vegetables are nice and tender, put them to one side. Brush the pan with a slick of oil or butter and pour in enough batter for a thin pancake. Cook on a low heat until the edges are sizzling golden brown and then flip. When both sides are cooked through and a gorgeous golden color, add the filling and chow down.
Sweet Potato and Black Bean Chili
While Classic VW Bus lovers may be groaning at another chili recipe, this one comes amped up with all the flavors to lend a little extra zing to a winter comfort dish. Warm meals are a must when summer is behind, and this deep dish has all the wonders of being a one pot delight.
Finely dice some onion and garlic and throw into a large pan with a pinch of paprika, oregano, cinnamon, and coriander seeds. Add some diced sweet potato, a can of black beans, a tin of chopped tomatoes, and a cup of chicken or vegetable stock. Stir in a teaspoon or two of dark drinking chocolate powder, squeeze some fresh lime, and let it all simmer for a good 40 minutes or so or until the sweet potato is soft. Serve with a handful of fresh cilantro, some sliced avocado, and tortilla chips.
Trout with Cider
This fish dinner may sound fancy, but its super easy and can go from pan to plate in just twenty minutes. For those who are parked up close to fresh rivers, ask around to get your hands on some local trout or pick it up from the nearest supermarket. Trout needs to be kept chilled so for those Classic VW Bus owners who don’t have an ice-box or refrigerator, you need to buy and cook on the same evening.
Chop up some parsley and season the trout with a little olive oil, along with salt and pepper before stuffing the parsley into the fish cavities and rolling it in a little flour. Melt a knob of butter in the pan, before adding the trout and letting it sizzle for 5 minutes on each side.
Pour a glass of dry cider into the trout pan and let it bubble until reduced for another two minutes. Serve the fish with a drizzle of leftover butter and cider sauce, parsley, and either warm baby potatoes or a fresh spring salad and a hunk of bread.
Sizzling Steak Stir-fry
Life on the road can take up lashings of energy; in-between the surfing, sight-seeing, and socializing with the Classic VW BusLife crowd, sometimes you need a protein filled pick me up. This fast and furious steak stir fry grants you just that.
Cut the steak into finger sized flanks and season with salt, pepper and some crushed coriander seeds. Steam up some tender stem broccoli and put to one side as you add the medium cut egg noodles to a pan of salted water until tender. Drain and cover to lock in the heat. Finely chop up some onions, garlic and ginger and add to a hot pan with a stir of oil. Add the cut steak and the broccoli and let everything fragrantly fry up for five minutes. Add a dash of soy sauce and then the noodles, stirring until all the ingredients have mingled together in bright harmony. Serve with a squeeze of lime and some finely chopped red chili for extra warmth.