Traveling with Frozen Meat
How do you eat properly on the road? Well, it's easier when you take food with you. For years now when we hit the road we take our portable 12v/110v Dometic freezer. It has given us years of trouble free service and it will absolutely keep food frozen. For refrigerated food we also take our 12v Coleman Cooler. The Coleman cooler only cools about 40 degrees below the ambient temperature. In an air conditioned vehicle it does great. But it will slowly warm up if left in a hot vehicle. The cooler can be helped by swapping out ice packs from the freezer. We use both units frequently even when in town. BTW, don't forget that you can have meat shipped ahead if you can't take enough with you. There's no excuse for eating unhealthy food.
Vacuum Insulated Stainless Steel Containers
These newfangled stainless steel double-walled insulated "mugs" go the distance in keeping beverages hot or cold. Put in ice today and there will still be ice in the cup tomorrow. The Yeti brand is quite famous and spendy, but there are others such as Ozark Trail, Epic, and Magnum Steel that also go the distance.
Vacuum Seal Bags
Getting good vacuum seals on food packages used to be complicated. Now it's simple, reusable, fast, and effective. Ziploc Vacuum Seal Bags are the answer. To get started purchase this Ziploc Vacuum Starter Kit. Then order a selection of Ziploc Vacuum Seal Bags and you're in business. The specially designed vacuum bags have a unique one-way valve that allows air in the bags to be removed by a simple, battery-free, air removal pump. It’s so easy a child can do it. This packaging method is great for freezing steak, hamburger, chicken, and any other food product you want to store safely in your refrigerator or the freezer. The bags are easy to open, reusable and effective for long-term or short-term storage.
The next step up is one of these vacuum seal machines. The downside is these machines require a higher upfront cost and in our experience (we have both systems) they may not always be as effective at holding a good seal as the Ziploc Vacuum Seal Bags. Foodsaver has a large selection of Foodsaver Packaging material and even their own bags that compete with Ziploc Vacuum Seal Bags.
Cast Iron Pans
Of course cast iron pans are made heavy-duty, rough, and rugged. But best of all is the cooking surface which means no Teflon (Polytetrafluoroethylene) or aluminum. Cast iron is ideal for frying fish and chicken and grilling steaks, vegetables, eggs, and bacon. An important part of cooking is controlling the temperature of the cooking surface. Cast Iron gives you the ultimate in control and flexibility! It makes the perfect veggies and meats, just the way you want them. Easy to clean, just soap and water! Do not put in the dishwasher. Our recommendations are:
And if you're like us, you might use this one the most.
Splatter Screens are a necessary implement for those of us who are cooking with animal fats. They come is wide variety of sizes to fit most pans, even the huge 15" cast iron pans.
A great way to impress the whole gang with your cooking prowess is to use a Texsport Rotisserie Grill and Spit. Another great favorite is a Lamb/Pig/Goat Charcoal Barbecue Grill Spit Rotisserie Roasting Machine with a Wind Shield Motor. These grilling devises can cook whole pigs, whole goats, and whole lambs with ease. That really wows the crowds on those special occasions.
Meat Cutting Boards
A good variety of cutting boards is essential kitchen equipment. The small boards are terrific for slicing and dicing vegetables and such. But when it comes to slicing meat, large boards with good juice rails are best. Large is up around 16" x 20" in size.
Here is an affordable set of smaller cutting boards.
CC Boards - 3-Piece Bamboo Cutting Board Set: Three convenient wood sizes. Attractive two-tone wooden chopping boards made of eco-friendly bamboo. Durable for any kitchen, cheese board or serving tray
The OXO Board has a 15" x 21" option that is excellent for carving and slicing meat.
Better than plastic, but slightly smaller, is this 20" x 14" Large Natural Bamboo Butcher Block Cutting Board with Drip Groove.
Cheese Slicing Board
If you have never had a cheese slicing board, once you get one you'll be glad you did. Get a larger-sized board. In our opinion the 5" x 8" boards are too small. The link below is a decent size.
Knives and Sharpeners
A good set of kitchen knives is a chef's most important set of tools. For meat eaters, good knives are essential. Knives are an investment and better quality is well worth it. Here's our favorite set of knives.
A good set of knives requires an exceptional knife sharpener. Yes, a knife can be honed with the steel, but in time it must be precision sharpened. The inexpensive sharpeners can destroy a good set of knives. So don't think any sharpener will do. This is the sharpener we use.
Ground Meat Grill Basket
When ground meat is grilled to an internal temperature of 160 degrees with relatively low heat that will not sear the exterior of the patty, it stays tender and juicy on the inside. Unfortunately, all too often patties like this are hard to flip on the grill and still keep them together. A grilling rack solves that problem. Go here for a wide variety of grill baskets. Our favorite basket is made by Charcoal Companion. It comes with a thick patty forming device which is extremely handy when making Kale Burgers. Make sure you get more than one rack. Check out these offerings.