The only thing we find disagreeable about hobos the food is the soiled foil that must be disposed of after the meal. The foil is hard to reuse because it tears easily, and it's hard to recycle because there's often times caramelized bits of food stuck to it. Fortunately, we can do better if we hypothesize that our hobo friends (the people) could have come into some cast iron cookware in which to prepare their food.
|Our foil replacement in this case will be a big dutch oven. It turns out that brick spacing required for sap boiling pans is also about right for a full-sized grill grate. Sorry we didn't get a picture before cooking commenced--we just tossed in cubed potatoes, carrots, and green onions, a stick of butter, a pound of ground venison, and seasoned liberally with salt, pepper, red pepper, garlic powder, oregano, and basil. The green onions (Egyptian onions--thanks Anna!) were something we hadn't tried before, but they worked great!|
|The lid of the dutch oven makes enough of a seal to bathe the ingredients in steam during cooking. The steam is released like a flock of doves when the lid is opened.|
|Ideally, there is a thin layer of caramelized veggies along the bottom and sides, and a bit of excess butter to keep things from really cooking onto the surface.|
What's your favorite way to make hobos?
This particular iteration used the following recipe:
11 medium potatoes, cubed
10 medium carrots, cubed
0.25 lb green onions
1 Tablespoon salt
2 Tablespoons each pepper, garlic powder, oregano, and basil
0.5 Tablespoon cayenne pepper
1 stick butter
1 lb ground venison
Toss everything into a 12-quart dutch oven, crumbling the venison on top of the other ingredients. Set over a hot campfire for 30-40 min, depending on how hot. (Setting the pot directly on the coals will probably cook the bottom too quickly.) When it starts to smell done, check on the meat and veggies near the top of the pot. If they are close to done, put the lid back on and let it go another 10-15 minutes. If they are not close to done, stir the pot such that those pieces will be close to the bottom. Check frequently to ensure that an appropriate amount of caramelization happens on the bottom. When done, scoop into bowls and top with cheese (or ketchup, if you must). Best eaten outside with a glass of homemade wine while watching the sun set over the garden.