An oven for the campsite. It blew me away when I saw this Camp Chef Deluxe Outdoor Oven – so I thought a Product Review was in order.
On this trip, friends Cathi and Barry had adult kids, grandkids, and friends coming and going for over a week. San Clemente State Beach was the destination, and C&B has this WIRED after decades of experience.
So let’s get to this Camp Chef Deluxe Outdoor Oven, a gift to Barry from daughter, Kristi’s family. It weighs 32 lbs., and is the size of a large microwave oven. It’s propane with a matchless ignition. The oven heats to 400 degrees F — Cathi brought cake and brownie mixes. On a lower temp, it’s a perfect warming drawer to keep the bacon and pancakes hot while cooking for a crowd. Two stovetop burners had fairly good sized flames, not roaring hot (the family always brings another gigantic propane two-burner monster).
Food Tent. They set up a large tent exclusively to house ice chests of produce, meats and dairy; plastic tubs of dry goods (crackers, pasta, rice); wine and cocktail stuff. The separate tent kept critters away from sleeping tents (we weren’t in bear country, but there are skunks, ants, flies, etc.). There was a thick circle of chalk dust around the Food Tent, and some cans of ant spray for the exterior, if things go awry. But we still realized that ants like toothpaste. So, note to self: ziplock bags.
For a “kitchen sink,” foodservice stainless steel mixing bowls plus a large spaghetti strainer. Heat water on the stove. Use one bowl of hot, soapy water for dish washing, place strainer inside a second bowl. Clean, soapy dishes into the strainer, rinse with more hot water, air dry a bit. For the most part, this family uses real dishes and flatwear, a super fun collection of oddball items from over the years.
Maybe this is all “no duh” to you but I hadn’t camped since high school. Larry spent the first 14 or so summers of his life fishing with his dad. Cold. Wet. Tents on the ground. Crack of dawn rising. He was NOT thrilled with this idea of a few nights camping again at this old age, but with the comfy conveniences of home, including that cool oven, and I brought our guest bed’s 4-inch-thick memory foam mattress topper, real sheets and a cozy blanket, it was all good.