By: Blonde Two

Mr B1 (correction… that’s Mr B2!) and I are off on a campervan adventure this week. We are heading to Up North and I predict that, with the nights drawing in, we will be wanting a few quick and warming dinners to set ourselves up for the chilly nights ahead. We only have 5 nights but here are 10 ideas for campervan meals for 2 we will be choosing from (please note the small gesture towards healthiness contained in almost every recipe).

  1. Spicy sausage noodles with spring onions and mushrooms. 1 bag of instant noodles, a handful of spring onions, a few mushrooms and some chorizo or other spicy sausage (we always keep the van stocked with Peperami). Easy, one pan cooking, just throw it all together, cook a bit, then eat!
  2. Mock shepherds pie. 1 packet of instant mashed potato, 2 carrots, 1 tin of minced beef, 1 small tin of peas. Cook the carrots in plenty of water, mix together the mince and peas and heat gently, use the carrot water to make up the instant potato, pour the mince mixture and carrots into 2 bowls and splodge the potato on top.
  3. Quick chicken broth. 1 chicken breast, 1 onion, 1 carrot, 1 red pepper, 1 chicken stock cube, 1 bay leaf, salt and pepper. You will need a slightly bigger pan for this one (or I have been known to cook it in two small pans). Chop the vegetables smaller than you usually would and put them into a pan of water with the chicken breast, stock cube and bay leaf. Sit back and read your book for around 20 minutes then remove the cooked chicken breast, chop it up and add it back into the soup. Add salt and pepper and eat when you think it tastes nice (if this doesn’t happen see number 10).
  4. Pasta and cheese sauce. As much pasta as you can fit in your pan with water, 1 dessertspoonful each of flour and butter, milk, chopped celery and some tasty cheddar. Get the pasta going, adding more hot water as you go if necessary. Over a low heat, melt the butter, briefly cook the celery, mix in the flour and then gradually add the milk and cheese. Plop the lot into bowls in layers when it is all cooked.
  5. Quick veg chilli and rice. 1 red pepper, 1 carrot, 1 onion, 2 cloves garlic, olive oil, 1 tin of baked beans, 1 vegetable stock cube, piri piri sauce and a boil in the bag rice. Chop the vegetables as small as you can and fry these in the olive oil. Add the beans, stock cube and as much piri piri sauce as you can take. Whilst this is cooking gently boil the rice. Serve with water just in case.
  6. Bacon and avocado wraps. 4 herb wraps, 1 avocado, 8 rashers of bacon, mayonnaise, 4 cheese triangles and a few salad leaves. This one is self explanatory really, just make sure you don’t smash that avocado!
  7. Cheesy potato pie. Real potato this time plus a tasty goats’ cheese, a sprinkle of spring onions, chopped tomato and butter. This is a pie in name only but ‘mushed up potato and goats’ cheese’ didn’t quite sound right. Peel and boil the potatoes then mash them with the butter and some salt and pepper. Layer the mash into bowls with goats’ cheese, onions and tomatoes then close your eyes when you eat it. You won’t even miss the pastry.
  8. Noodles with tomato sauce. Spaghetti can be a handful in a campervan so I have gone for egg noodles here. Fry up 1 onion, 1 red pepper and 2 cloves of garlic, add either a tin of tomatoes or some local chopped ones, with a stock cube and some pepper and your sauce will be ready in the time it takes to cook your noodles.
  9. Deconstructed tuna kedgeree. I found a recipe for deconstructed stuffed cabbage whilst researching this one. This is clearly ridiculous because unstuffed cabbage is just… cabbage! Along a similar vein, cook a packet of spicy rice, put this into bowls, then pile tuna mixed with mayonnaise and curry paste on the top. If you want a vegetable, a tin of sweetcorn should do the trick.
  10. Cheese puff crisps and a bottle of local ale. Well… a girl has to have a day off cooking sometimes! This one worked very well for me on a recent 3-day outing to Dartmoor.

When our kids were young and budgets were tight I cooked meals to use up cupboard ingredients, these were always labelled as ‘stuff’ when the children asked what was for tea… you might have spotted a tendency towards ‘stuff’ in the recipes above…