This last Sunday the wife and I went for a lovely car camping expedition. And with all that accompanies the wonderful world of car camping; extra chairs, firewood, the dog, pillows, a cooler, one gets take liberties in cooking extravagant, delicious meals. We packed our cooler full of the sundries that would be come dinner and breakfast and we headed north (and a little west) to Vedauwoo, Wyoming. Vedauwoo is an awesome place (you should go there), full of crazy rock features and lovely trails. We planned on getting there, setting up camp, taking a nice hike, then settling in for dinner.
Things went as planned, the drive was an easy 65 minutes and upon arrival the tent went up, the chairs got put out, and we went for a fantastic hike. The Turtle Rock Loop (I think that's what it's called), a nice five miles (we added a little extra distance with a jaunt around some beaver ponds) of hiking and taking family photos. Fun was had by all. And when we returned back to camp Megan took a nap in the sun and I got the dinner fire burning. I wanted to get a nice bed of coals ready for cooking so I started the fire with plenty of time to spare. When that nice red base was laid I started to get out the dinner foods; baked potatoes, Boulder Sausage brand Italian sausage, buns, stone ground mustard, Fat Tire in a can.
I cracked a can (as any good country chef would do) and wrapped the potatoes in foil. Upon completing what may have been the hardest task of the evening I dropped the potatoes right onto the coals.
Just go ahead and cock your head to the left, my computer (along with no help from the internets) will not allow me to flip this image 90 degrees (sorry, I'm not well versed in the computer arts).
Anywho, doesn't that look tasty already? Now, I like my fire cooked potatoes to be nice and crispy in the skin region, so I like to leave them on the coals for a nice, long time. I cracked another Fat Tire in the interim. Next up: the sausages. I just went a head and threw them right on the grill/grate, but leading up to that I had to boast the fire a little so the flames could reach said tubular meats. I cooked them nice and slow taking time to flip them often, I wanted (as you would want) to cook the inside as well as char up the outside, not just serve them up like a gas station burrito (molten ends and a frozen middle). Nearing the end of the sausage cook cycle I threw the buns on the grate, toasted them up, then got out the mustard for the meats, and butter, as well as salt, pepper, and shredded cheese for the potatoes. I called out to Megan to wake up in time for dinner and we both started filling our plates (actually, we forgot the plates, I used the lid to our larger pot and she used the larger pot itself). She in turn cracked a Fat Tire can (to accompany my Fat Tire can) and we set down for accessorizing our eats. Butter, salt, pepper,and a little shredded cheese for the starches and some stone ground mustard (I like to call it chunky mustard) for the meats.
In eating such a great meal one must consider the pairings, the potatoes went well with the sausages, the mustard was a perfect friend the the meat, and the Fat Tire cans went with.... well, everything. The malty sweetness of the Amber Ale complemented the sugars and starches in the potato so well I thought they might have been made for each other. The crispy skin of the potato had almost a caramel flavor which brought out the can-conditioned flavors of the Fat Tire. And the sausages, well boy-howdy, that was one for the ages. I bought the spicy ones and the spicy sausage just about held hands with the slightly hoppy end to a sip of Fat Tire. The dry finish of the beer pretty well wiped the palette clean for the next bite, and (believe-you-me) I took one (about 20 more after that as well).
So, head out into this world dear readers and cook over that open fire, just remember to bring a few Fat Tires (in a can (perfect for the out-of-doors type occasions)), and please, let me know how it goes.