We are preparing Something Shiny for her first journey of 2023, and it’s exciting! If you store your Airstream to await melting snow, then you will be restocking and planning for the season. I’ve learned a few things along the road, mostly by making mistakes. As an example, I thought my magnetic spice containers that attached to the range hood were so cool, so practical. They never fell off, even on the bumpiest roads. But the containers were too big, I didn’t need that much of any spice in one season. The lid shaker or slot would invariably find its way open, and herbs/spices would sprinkle the stove and floor. I use a lot of herbs and spices, but there are more practical solutions to carry them. Some ideas:
- Small zip-top bags (Ferenli 3.3 x 5.1 mylar, clear front bags $14, Amazon)
- 1 oz. plastic shaker spice jars (Cornucopia brand, red or black lid, Amazon $12.99/12 containers)
To save on space and weight, mix your own spice blends, salad dressings, BBQ sauce and pasta sauces. Stock a couple vinegars (red wine, sherry), a couple oils (walnut or avocado oil is nice for salad dressings), dried herbs, canned tomatoes. For the remainder of your food and pantry items, think of what you eat at home. Being on the road is not much different, you will make what you know and like. Stock your freezer with meat/fish, fruit, peas and ice. The fruit can be used for smoothies, pancake toppings, blueberry muffins, mango margaritas and salad dressings (think strawberry or raspberry vinaigrette). I was asked recently what to bring for a boondocking trip to a national park. There are stores everywhere, even if you must drive outside the park once a week. You will not starve. Dinner will often be leftovers, cheese and crackers or a charcuterie board, or you will go out to eat. I plan on making no more than 3-4 full meals a week and it’s usually enough.
Here’s a recipe for a dressing you can use on almost any kind of salad. Try some different greens, like Frisée, watercress, spinach or endive as your base. Add nuts, seeds and dried fruit. Say no to boring!
Strawberry (or Raspberry) Vinaigrette
(Makes about ½ cup of dressing, enough for one large salad)
- 3 T walnut oil or olive oil (or a mix of)
- 2 T white wine or white balsamic vinegar
- 1 T maple syrup (or honey)
- ¼ cup frozen strawberries or raspberries (thawed), or fresh berries
- 1/3 tsp salt
If you have a stick blender you can mix it all up with that. If not, mash your berries with a fork, then mix everything else together in a shaker or small canning jar. If you use a wide-mouth jar, the stick blender head will fit right inside the jar to blend. By the way, a stick blender is a versatile tool for your Airstream. You can blend dressings, make smoothies, puree soups and even use it to blend cocktails (mango margarita anyone?) I have a cordless one from Cuisinart and it’s very powerful. And you can use it while boondocking!