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Cook Talk

Hot Snack for Outdoors
Michal
11/07/13
Our band has it's championship competition on Sunday. We've been asked for a snack for right before they get on the bus to head for home. They will be tired and hungry. We will have baked goods, soft pretzels (which will be cold by then) and cold drinks. It will be cold - in the low 40's.

I'm trying to come up with a hot, finger food. The challenge: we won't have power so I'm thinking of bringing a camp stove (propane). I'm debating whether to just boil hot dogs, but I thought I'd see if you had any suggestions.

We'll be feeding about 75 people.

As always, THANKS!

ellen
11/07/13
How long do you have to hold it?

Pro caterers use bis cases called cambros, which will keep food safely hot for 6 hours. They can be rented. Burritos would be delicious.

Michal
11/08/13
You are GENIUS. I am picking up a cambro tomorrow and am making my shopping list for chicken burritos. I am right at 6 hours for keeping hot, but it will be in a car and we'll only open it once, so hopefully it will last in the cold weather. I will individually wrap the burritos in foil.

Do I need to put a wet towel in the bottom to keep moist?

Should I put a heated brick in the bottom or will the hot food generate enough heat?

ellen
11/08/13
Talk to the folks you get the cambro from, about how to preheat best. Full and hot they hold heat the best.
ellen
11/08/13
Here are some online tips for Cambro use and preheating:

You can hot water, you can also use a Sterno, or whichever fuel source you use for your Chafing Stands.
I have placed one of these in a 4 inch 1/2 insert pan, more for safty in transport, to keep this lit you have to have O2, open the pressure release cap(the white plastic cap found on the front of the door, this will give you a O2 source).
Yes meat can continue to cook inside a CAMBRO(actually any product will). Depending how long that the meat is in the cambro its own radiant heat may take it a degree or more.
You can cook your veg on the way to a function by covering the raw product with a boiling liquid(stock water,whatever) and say with in a 1/2 hour cooked perfect and not mushy.
Cover or not, keep your roasted potatoes uncover and place at top to maintain the crispness and avoid anything spilled on them(cross contamination). In fact if you put two layers of plastic wrap over a pan then use the plastic wrap as a cord and tie the coveing on under the lip of a incert you will not spill anything(We have had a cambro fall over on its side in transport with sauces inside and only lost 1/4 to a 1/8th of the liquid).
Generally though I wrap everything tightly to hold the heat on the product and not wasting in the heating in the compartment.
It is the smartest thing to do to preheat the cambro(or any plastic storage container. Why lose heat from your product to heat the surrounding cabinate to the same temp before using the cabinet prevents heat loss. Instead bring the cabinet up to the same temp or near,this holds your product longer. This is especially important when using the coffee containers.

ellen
11/08/13
Bricks warmed in the oven and then placed in the boxes will preheat them nicely without moisture.
Michal
11/08/13
Thanks for the info. I figure I need to make 110 burritos - forgot to include staff and volunteers the first time.

Can you please verify my estimates:

110 burrito sized tortillas
13 lb chicken breast (3 Tbsp per burrito)
28 C cooked rice (1/4 C per)
4 lb shredded cheddar (2 Tbsp per)
4 - 16 oz. cans back beans (1 Tbs per, rinsed and drained)

ellen
11/08/13
110 burrito sized tortillas Make some extra- including some vegetarian.
13 lb chicken breast (3 Tbsp per burrito)- this is 26 cups. 1 pound boneless is 2 cups, so 1 pound makes about 10; looks OK
28 C cooked rice (1/4 C per)- OK
4 lb shredded cheddar (2 Tbsp per)-
1 pound cheese makes about 4 cups, so add a bit more, maybe 1 cup per 5.
4 - 16 oz. cans back beans (1 Tbs per, rinsed and drained) I would do at least 2 tablespoons. A drained can is 1 3/4 cups, about 15.

A tablespoon or 2 salsa per each?

If this saves you time, trouble. or money, please consider a donation, maybe a dime per person, to support this site.

Michal
11/12/13
Just wanted to follow up - the burritos were a HUGE hit! They were the perfect item for what we needed - easy to serve in the dark and freezing weather, I just handed each kid a foil wrapped packet. The cambro worked great - I was right at about 6 hours for hold time and the burritos were still hot. These may become an annual item!

THANK YOU!

ellen
11/12/13
Good work and congratulations.
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