Written by husband and wife team Christine and Tim Conners, “The Scout’s Outdoor Cookbook” is a collection of recipes from scouts and scoutmasters. All fifty states are represented with classic camping recipes like Steak Au Gratin and cider. There are hundreds of recipes ranging in difficulty from “easy” to “advanced”. Sprinkled throughout the book are guidelines about cooking methods and tools, so this book is as much a teaching tool as it is a cookbook.
Since the Conners have included recipe variations for making this food in your home kitchen, you can practice your cooking techniques. Another thoughtful addition to “The Scout’s Outdoor Cookbook” is the inclusion of precise measurements for every ingredient. This is not a “cooking for dummies” book. Many of these recipes require a little bit of technique. Creating a challenging cookbook aimed at scouts and younger readers is a bold move, and it pays off for the Conners.
The total number of recipes in this book is just over 300. These recipes were drawn from “Scouting” magazine’s annual cooking contest, and if anyone knows how to prepare awesome camp food it is scouts and their leaders.
<h4>What’s in the book?</h4>
“The Scout’s Outdoor Cookbook” is set up so that cooks of all levels can use it. Every recipe is classified both by meal type (breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack, etc) and by level of difficulty. Along with a list of cooking tools, there is a list of icons representing the tools, so a recipe that requires a Dutch oven will have the icon of a Dutch oven next to it. LIttle things like this make this cookbook ideal for use with people of all ages.
There’s a special section in the Conners book about low impact cooking. Since the Boy Scouts of America and other outdoors organization are becoming more and more environmentally conscious, I was happy to see an entire section of the book devoted to cooking in camp without causing damage to the campsite itself.
One downside — many of these recipes require the use of a twelve or fourteen inch Dutch oven. This is nice if you have easy access to these ovens, but hikers and backpackers may not be able to lug around a big Dutch oven wherever they go. I wish the Conners had thought to include a few more portable type of meals than just shoving everything in a Dutch oven.
<h4>How much does it cost?</h4>
Depending on where you shop, “The Scout’s Outdoor Cookbook” could set you back as much as $20, but this is money well spent. Think of it as an investment — your next family camping trip will be much more enjoyable because of this book.
“The Scout’s Outdoor Cookbook” is a perfect addition to your scout’s library, but it is also perfect for anyone who enjoys the outdoors. This book will help you make great camp out food and teach you the proper cooking methods along the way. That’s why I give this book a <b>5 out of 5</b>.