Vicki Montague writes the popular blog FreeFromFairy and has also developed the world’s first gluten free, wholegrain, rice free flour. She hasn’t let her daughter’s food allergies and coeliac disease hold them back. Her family love camping and here she shares her top tips and favourite one pot recipes:
Once upon a time we would have taken the bare minimum to go camping and eaten at the local pub. However, as you know, when allergies and intolerances are involved this isn’t always so easy. So I want to share with you my top 12 tips for a successful camping trip away:
1) Do your research. Find out where the nearest supermarkets are (the chances are you will need to make a few trips, especially if the weather is good because your food won’t keep,) along with any cafes or restaurants that serve free-from food.
2) Get a big tent. This makes things much easier if you have to do cooking inside because of the weather. It is inevitable it will rain at some point, or be too windy to cook outside. If you have a big tent you will have the space to cook inside (providing you place it on a safe, non-flammable surface!).
3) Stock up on allergy friendly ready meals. We like Ilumi – they are vacuum packed meaning they retain their freshness and can be kept at room temperature. They can be heated in a matter of minutes giving you a break from the cooking.
4) Invest in a good camping stove. We have a Campinggaz Camping Chef which is fantastic. It has two ‘rings’ and a grill so you can do most things you could do at home.
5) Plan simple meals that won’t take too long to make and that can be made from ingredients that don’t need to be kept cool. It is much easier if everyone eats the same thing to prevent any cross contamination. And plan a BBQ for the first night while things are still cool in the cool box!
6) If you have the money then invest in a camping fridge. It makes life easier but isn’t essential if you follow steps 1 – 5.
7) Make sure you take lots of staples, like long-life gluten-free bread and dairy-free milk (or there is a big supermarket near by). You won’t find those in the campsite shop.
8) Bring lots of foil and sandwich bags. You will need them for packing up a lunch if you go out for the day.
9) Have a packet of baby wipes or anti-bacterial wipes for the inevitable food spillages and for wiping things down before preparing free-from food (if you are cooking separate things).
10) Buy some fabulous coconut milk powder. It is really handy to add to curry whilst also being a perfect to make up when you need milk. It saves a lot of space over taking big cartons of ready to drink dairy free milk.
11) Take plenty of antihistamines, for those pesky allergies that are triggered by pollen
12) Remember all your medication…there’s nothing worse than arriving at the campsite, putting up the tent and discovering that you don’t have your inhalers or essential medication to manage your allergies.
Here are some of my favourite food allergy friendly camping recipes:
Vegetable chilli (made using tinned vegetables),
Spaghetti bolognese using dried soya mince (again you could used tinned vegetables),