10 Great Products for Inside and Out
Camping season in New England is beginning again. Toasting marshmallows, playing cards and games, corn poppers, hiking, star-gazing or simply relishing down time with friends and family – these are all images that you just can’t help but smile about.
So when we pack for the food end of a camping trip (what better reason to get three or more squares a day?), we always remember the basics: cooler, paper goods, big pot to wash dishes in, etc. But there are some items you may not think of that actually serve double-duty in your kitchen at home.
Here’s our hot list of the 10 kitchen products you’ll love having both at the campsite and indoors.
1. WUSTHOF HERB SHEARS
Yes, Wusthof makes high end, German-engineered cutlery that you may think only belongs safely inside a knife block on your kitchen counter. Time to think outside the block! These shears are just the tool you need to chop and mince fresh herbs directly into whatever you like, without needing a cutting board or knife. Use them to prepare the fresh basil, chives, cilantro, parsley or rosemary you brought with you on your camping trip, or if you’re lucky enough to be near a place where you can clip them fresh, all the better. The handles are ergonomic and the shears come with a sheath for safe storage. They should be hand washed, but that’s not a problem…last we checked, even the most modern campsites don’t come equipped with dishwashers.
2. CAMPFIRE WHIRLEY POP
Remember this: the original stovetop popcorn popper? It’s still around and it sure beats the flavor you get from the microwaveable bags. If you have and love the indoor model you’ll want to invest in the outdoor one, too: The “Open Fire Pop” popper makes delicious popcorn with that old time “shake & pop” experience right over your campfire (or fireplace or grill). It’s safe to use, too – with a comfort stay-cool handle and easy pouring lid that keeps your hands away from the heat.
3. KEBO BOTTLE OPENER
While the Whirley Pop is reminiscent of the good old days, this is a product that’s new on the market. Once you see how easy it is to use, however, you’ll wonder what took them so long to invent it. Actually, the Kebo bottle opener is inspired by simpler times; it’s a modern interpretation of the Theodore Low bottle opener from the 1930s. At any rate, it’s the easiest way there is to pop open a bottle cap, and would certainly be welcome anywhere fine beer or carbonated beverages are enjoyed – like ’round a campfire! The name Kebo® is derived from “Bottle Key.” Clever!
Watch the video to see how it works
p.s. These folks really are clever, the also created “Chomp Stix”: easy-to-use plastic chop sticks that make food fun.
4. MOISTURE PROOF SHAKER
Sometimes the littlest things make all the difference. Whether you’re in a Cape Cod kitchen or a campsite by a lake, moist environments make things sticky…but this shaker is moisture proof! No more clogged salt: perfect for boating, camping, picnics, and everyday use.
5. CAST IRON SKILLET
A cast iron skillet is one of the most essential items in a kitchen. The even heating – and heat retention – of cast iron is what gives foods that perfect pan sear. It’s versatile, durable, and it cooks your morning bacon and eggs over a campfire perfectly.
6. FRENCH PRESS
Ok, so maybe the rugged camping types will get a chuckle out of this one, but if you’re a coffee connoisseur you will appreciate getting your morning Joe from a French press after a perhaps uncomfortable night sleeping on the ground. The standard size press makes 3 to 4 mugs of coffee, and all you need is the hot water and your favorite ground beans: no electrical outlet required.
7. GOURMET DIP SEASONINGS
Since we seem to be on a roll regarding the good life in the great outdoors, why not pack a few delicious dip mixes from Gourmet du Village? Add a cup of sour cream, a cup of mayo and you’ve made a terrific homemade dip in no time with these award-winning mixes. They’re also great as spreads for sandwiches and burgers, and there are lots of yummy blends to choose from like Lemon Dill, Sun Dried Tomato, Roasted Pepper and Roasted Garlic.
8. MRS. MEYERS DISH SOAP
There’s no way around it, cleanup is a necessary part of camping. Even if you’re using disposable products for your dishes, there will undoubtedly be pots, pans and utensils to wash after each meal. Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day Lavender Dish Soap is the ticket: it’s all natural yet it makes grease disappear like nobody’s business. Rinses clean, too, so you have less trips to the water spigot. The concentrated formula goes a long way: all you need is a squirt or two and you’re on your way.
9. TERVIS TUMBLERS
Tervis is a name that’s been around for awhile – and you should except no substitutes. Tervis Tumblers keep cold drinks cold and hot drinks hot, and they are virtually indestructible. Go with the standard clear tumblers, or add a little whimsy with their sailboat design. And of course these tumblers are happy to travel everywhere, including campsites!
10. MELAMINE TABLEWARE
Plates and serveware made from stain resistant melamine give you have a sturdy, nice looking table setting for both indoor & outdoor use. They’re heat resistant, so you can use them for hot foods without worry. And melamine is a green option, too, they’re lightweight and easily package, but they wash clean and can be reused over and over again. The Gourmac line comes in classic white – or if you’re feeling a little “fancy,” go for the Keller-Charles collection adorned with blooming blue hydrangeas.
So whether you’re a seasoned outdoor veteran or someone who’d rather go cabin-style with “above ground” toilets, there’s nothing wrong with bringing along some items to make your outdoor kitchen experience more enjoyable.