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Cooking and Camp Fires ~ by WoodlandsTV

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Different ways of cooking in the wild using a tripod, stones etc

Transcript

All right. This is a tripod set up today, because we're going to do a dual cooking method. We've got some duck cassoulet already grilling. And to keep the pan of water on a rolling boil, we've already increased the heat, so it's boiled and safe to drink. We just need it topped up for cups of teas today.

What we've got is basically three poles of hazel. We use hazel because it's a quick growing tree, so we're not making an impact on the environment. I fastened this today with some copper wire found in the survival tin, coming off to a hooked stick. While trimming one of the branches, I've also acquired another hook for lifting the hot pan off. And that stays up there so you don't lose it.

And the procedure of this is basically finding the center of gravity of the pan you're using and laying it over the fire. So we've got a long, forked stick with a notch, and we've embedded the wire into the notch so it doesn't pull through. Coming up, we've attached it to the thickest stick. And then we've just bound these together, with the lowest point using the "V" for strength.

And of course once it's hot, you don't want to be touching the metal. So you hold the stick and bring off with another pan. We could use natural cordage for this, because of the size of the pan base, there's no actual heat on the stick. It's all hitting the bottom of the pan. But you're not making string every day, that's why we use copper and its longevity.

When not in use, so the stick doesn't burn away and perish, we leave it hanging up. We've left these purposely long. You can put wet equipment, socks, boots, we can put them on here to catch a bit of air and warmth of the fire to dry over the evening. Also, cups are a handy place to have, especially if you're making a cup of tea.

There may be occasion you're short of wire. And in that case, you can adjust the height by bringing in or taking out the tripod, which effectively highers or lowers the pot. Today, we've got some duck cassoulet and it's just on some slow burning embers, and it's not coming far off. We've actually dug this in a pit today. The reason for this is we want some slow cooking. It's low in oxygen, and it burns fuel more effectively, rather than having a roaring fire all day. It'll probably burn the food product as well.

We also got another method of cooking over here. And this is what we've got set up for boiling. There's various ways we can do this. Inverted with a hanger coming off. But we've done a straightforward straight stick, inverted "V," which can be taken apart very easily. And it's all gravity based. Coming along. And as the stick burns off at the end, we can just get a longer stick and keep on moving it along.

At the business end here, we've got a nice, clean fire area so the fire is not going to spread. We can even shallow out a depression if we wanted to retain the embers. And this is designed for quick boiling. We can have more tinder and kindling now and have a brew in five minutes or so.

We've got big logs on there today, just to retain a little bit of heat. And when we need the next brew, we'll just stoke it up. If you wished, we could pan fry on this sort of fire. By removing our sticks and our kettle, we could put a frying pan on there, and you could be cooking your burgers, sausages, bacon and eggs, rather quickly.

The benefit of this fire is quick. You can get it going quick. You can have a quick cup of tea. You can be on the move again. The downside of the fire, it retains a lot of fuel. You need a lot of fuel and back up to keep it burning all the time.

This is a hangy we had last night. What we do is build a big fire. We super heat the stones and they collapse in the fire. We then put meat and vegetables on. The thicker the stuff you're cooking, the lower in the fire it goes. because that's where the maximum heat is.

And then basically, once it's all in cooking, we put a lid over top, cover it with a bit more soil, and this acts as a giant pressure cooker now. The benefit of this fire, it leaves you time to go and do other things. A leg of lamb, let's say, or a hind of deer, things like that, will take approximately two and a half or three hours to cook on a warmish day. So that's three hours you can be collecting fire wood, water, or attending to camp duties.

Posted in: Survival, Traditional Skills ~ On: 3 February, 2009

26 comments so far

Dr.Trollish
July 27, 2011

@dLimboStick Nah hes not that cool like me : ) I agree with that move though, I mean especially if you are treking around and not camping. Who wants to carry all kinds of stakes and poles and such when the woods has it on site already ya know. Always gonna need your own pots and pans though, rocks can be a grill, not much else.

dLimboStick
July 28, 2011

@pac6010: Seems kinda half-assed to me. You’re either packing stuff in, or car camping. If I’m gonna pack stuff in, that stuff isn’t gonna include a iron pot. It’ll be light weight back-packing gear. If I’m gonna car camp and bring an iron pot, I’ll bring a tripod with it.

pac6010
July 28, 2011

@dLimboStick Ya I’m not dragging around any giant pots like that either to tell ya the truth, I have seen people do it though, not as big as the one hes got. I like just a small pan to cook and and a metal water bottle to boil water in, maybe a small fold up grill plate that sits over the fire. Those tripods are also good for drying cloths over the fire if you get wet if not for cooking.

drtrolish
July 28, 2011

@dLimboStick Ya I’m not dragging around any giant pots like that either to
tell ya the truth, I have seen people do it though, not as big as the one
hes got. I like just a small pan to cook and and a metal water bottle to
boil water in, maybe a small fold up grill plate that sits over the fire.
Those tripods are also good for drying cloths over the fire if you get wet
if not for cooking.

Dr.Trollish
July 28, 2011

@dLimboStick Ya I'm not dragging around any giant pots like that either to tell ya the truth, I have seen people do it though, not as big as the one hes got. I like just a small pan to cook and and a metal water bottle to boil water in, maybe a small fold up grill plate that sits over the fire. Those tripods are also good for drying cloths over the fire if you get wet if not for cooking.

dgl1962
September 4, 2011

Terrific ideas! thank you

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