Whether camping or cooking at home, hanging your pots and pans can be a struggle. Here are a few must-haves for hanging them without worrying about burning the food or dropping them in the fire:
Hanger for pots and pans
Devices used to suspend pans over the fire are available either ready-made or easily assembled from hardware and camping specialist stores.
- Options include a steel tripod (which will suspend only one pot at a time), a hinged crane (made from a steel upright bolted to the inside wall of the fireplace with a hinged arm radiating out from it across the flame, on which a number of containers can be hung) or any similar combination of steel or iron uprights and cross-rods (choose lengths of steel such as pickets with ready-made bolt holes, or pipe fittings which can be easily slotted together and then secured).
- A visit to a fireplace specialist or an antique store in search of original cooking accessories can be well worthwhile.
- Pots should be attached by the handle to pothooks, and lengths of chain should then be suspended from the rod or apex of the tripod (use old-fashioned pothooks or steel hooks designed for hanging potted plants, available from garden supply and hardware stores).
- Necessary accessories include thick leather gloves for handling hot saucepans and utensils, long-handled tongs and a small shovel for heaping coals.
- Specialist cookware which adds ease and variety to fireplace cookery includes jaffle irons, wire grilling and toasting frames which sandwich food over the fire or in the coals.
For the committed fireside cook, a roasting spit produces crisp-skinned, healthy roasts.
- Most barbecue and camping supply stores stock spits in a number of different styles and sizes, and a simple spit can easily be rigged up at home.
- Spit roasts should be first seared over a low flame to brown and seal in the juices, then turned frequently and basted with either juices, oil or a marinade.
- Position a pan below the meat to prevent any flare-ups in the cooking fire.
For some reason, cooking over a fire always seems to taste better. With a few hangers for your pots and pans, you’ll be able to cook like a pro — even in the great outdoors!