“Curing Kitchen Overload During the Holidays”

Front Row Left to Right: Mashed Potatoes, Cranberries, Brined & Smoked Turkey, Home Grown Sweet Potatoes. Back Row – Left to Right: Home Made Dinner Rolls, Pen’s Fancy Green Beans, Cornbread Dressing, traditional bread crumb dressing. The Corn & Oyster Casserole is between the sweet potatoes and the bread crumb dressing. Not pictured are a cranberry/apple pie, a pecan pie, and a punkin’ pie.”

Planning and preparing a holiday dinner such as Thanksgiving Day dinner present the home cook with the dilema of too many things to cook in to short of time with just the home oven. It takes lots of juggling to get the job done but it’s not without some weeping, wailing, and gnashing of teeth. The primary problem is a roasting turkey pretty well ties up the oven for the duration. Everything else must be cooked ahead of time and warmed up prior to serving.

But…the easy way to eliminate the hassle is to utilize one’s Dutch ovens and camp kitchen to cook desserts, rolls, pies, etc so that everything is done at the same time and on time!

For our 2011 Thanksgiving Day dinner we utilized our Camp Chef 24″ Smoke Vault as an outdoor oven. We started by starting a 14 lb. brined turkey in with some mesquite chips at a temp of 275 degrees. For the first hour the bird was n the Smoke Vault we prepared traditional bread crumb dressing and a batch of cornbread dressing. When the dressing went in we cranked the heat up to 325 degrees. After 45 minutes we added some home grown sweet potatoes rubbed with olive oil. All this time the oven in the house was turning out a pecan pie, a cranberry/apple pie, and a punkin’ pie.

When the sweet potatoes had been in for about twenty minutes Penny put the home made dinner rolls in the oven in the house while I put our Corn & Oyster Casserole in the Smoke Vault.

Fifteen minutes later I took the turkey out to rest. The rolls in the home oven and the Corn & Oyster Casserole finished just as I started slicing the turkey. Our entire Thanksgiving Day Dinner was done at the same time and on time with no scheduling conflicts for oven time and space!

The moral of the story is to be creative and use your camp kitchen to make cooking in your home kitchen even easier!

Share this post