Archive for the ‘Recipes’ Category
It is a great sunny day, so let’s cook up a batch of food to last a few days. In the All American Solar Oven, we’ve prepared another South of the Border favorite, Mexican Rice. Since the Sun Oven’s chamber is large enough, and it reaches 300 degree temperatures in a short time, rice of any kind is always a good option.
Mexican Rice recipe: Adapted from “Adventures in Solar Cooking”, by Jackass Jill (Spanish Rice)
Mix all in a bowl: 1/2 cup water, 1 Tbsp chili flakes, 1 bell pepper diced, 1/2 onion diced, 1 cup of long grain white rice, 2 small celery stalks diced, 1 tsp paprika, 1 tsp cumin, 1 tsp salt (optional), 1 large Tbsp chili powder, 1 small can of diced tomatoes with green chiles , 1 can tomato sauce (16 oz) 1 tsp oregano, 1 Tbsp minced garlic, 1 lb of extra lean ground beef. Once thoroughly mixed, put into the 3-quart dutch oven and place into solar oven.
In good sunshine, this will be ready in 4 hours. The day we prepared it, we had some passing clouds and it took about 5 1/2 hours. To make this really tasty, we sprinkled some “fiesta cheese” on top of the rice about 1/2 hour before removing it from the oven. However, you can use the cheese of your choice, or just eliminate it altogether. We do recommend getting the best extra lean ground beef for the dish to make it less greasy.
This meal came out great for us. We were able to share some with friends and family and are already being asked to make another batch. If you are skeptical of solar cooking, or don’t want to spend money for a commercially available solar cooker, without more information, try picking up a book about it. There are several inexpensive and good ones available here.
Using your Solavore Sport on a bright sunny day, can yield some festive results. Today’s menu included Mexican Stuffed Peppers and Brownies Plus. In the nice Summer sunshine, the Solavore easily attained a 275 F temperature and was able to bake our two selections in just under 4 hours.
The Brownies Plus, were compliments of a Betty Crocker mix, with the addition of just 2 tablespoons of raisins, a dash of crushed red pepper and a handful of chopped walnuts. They baked in 1.5 hours. Our guests loved them!
The stuffed pepper recipe is adapted from a wonderful solar cookbook,Solar Cooking for Home & Camp, by Linda Yaffe (“Tex-Mex Stuffed Peppers”), and is simple to create. Here it is:
Recipe for Mexican Stuffed Peppers: Mix: 1 clove garlic chopped, or 1 tbsp minced garlic, 1 small onion coarsely or finely chopped (your preference), 2 cans (14oz) refried beans (about 30oz), 1 teaspoon paprika, 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper, 1/2 tsp salt (recipe, but we don’t normally cook with salt), 1 tbsp Italian seasoning, 4 ounces of Monterrey Jack cheese, finely diced.(mix altogether in bowl), core 4 large bell peppers sliced in half lengthwise. Stuff peppers with the mixture, place into oiled 3 qt pot and then pour a can (12 oz) of enchilada sauce over it all and cover with lid (Old El Paso does a good job). In decent sunshine, your peppers will be ready in about 4 hours. This is a filling meal and should satisfy your vegetarian friends.
Hope you enjoy these solar-made dishes as much as we did with our guests.
The GoSun Solar Stove is a versatile and fast solar oven, especially when sunshine is in great supply. Since it reaches temperatures well over 450 degrees F under such conditions, it takes no time at all to prepare many dishes, like chicken wings. Simply clean and lightly prep the wings and place them into the GoSun tray. Slide it in and let it go! In good sunshine, you will want to check them in about a half hour to see how they’re coming along. At that time also, you may want to add in the particular flavor you are aiming for, like butter garlic.
Hey, and speaking of flying away, while the wings are “grounded” and the GoSun transforms them into your delicious meal, just go fly a kite! No kidding! Here’s where you can get an excellent starter kite that will allow you, children or friends to have a blast while the GoSun Solar Stove does its thing.
wThose of us who enjoy deer hunting, have probably already prepped our arsenal for the season. Your rifles are clean, you have made sure the gun sites are properly adjusted, your outdoor clothing and gear stand at the ready, and the ammo is stocked. If you are a bow or muzzle loader hunter, you might already be out in the woods. But, if you are like many hunters, your freezer is still packed with last year’s meat. How many venison steaks and packages of sausage and hamburg are hiding in there?
Get out your solar oven on the next available sunny day and cook up some of your surplus and share it with friends and family. With your solar cooker, you can readily reduce that surplus and get into the mode for the season.
This steak recipe is very simple. This marinade works well and removes some of the “wild” flavor. That’s not good for some of us that like it, but it will share easier with some of the snooty friends and family. First, slice them up into smaller pieces. Season the pieces with 2 tablespoons of minced garlic, or 2 chopped cloves, vigorously coat them with fresh ground black pepper, and a teaspoon of cumin. Pour a cup of apple juice into the 3 quart dark colored metal pot that is used with the solar cooker, then place the pieces into the pot. Cover it and put it in the fridge to marinate overnight.
On the new sunny day, get out the solar oven and preheat it. There’s not much more to do as you imagine. We added a cup of mushrooms, 1 sliced bell pepper and a chopped small onion into the pot, before putting it in the oven. Next, as you are already probably familiar with, just aim the oven at the sun and wait a few hours. The batch below took around 3 1/2 hours to prepare. The children were fed and no leftovers were to be had. A batch of mac & cheese was the side dish.
And they were absolutely delicious!
As most hunter’s try to be safe while enjoying their sport, it is a good idea to be prepared. Bring a good survival kit with you. Similar to the video below, a survival kit is truly a life saver.
Outdoor cooking, which largely entails solar cooking efforts, often attracts unwanted visitors in the form of pests. No, I’m not talking about the overly curious neighbor who still doesn’t believe that solar ovens really work, no matter how many times you have shown him.
Of course, what we’re referring to, are those creepy-crawly, little critters that always seem to find their way into the human outdoor cooking scenario. Yes, ants, beetles, and flying and crawling insects of all species, just seem to automatically arrive when you set out your solar oven, or open up the grill. That anthill might be off the side of the patio somewhere, but those little guys know where the party is at!
Don’t let pest ruin your next outdoor solar cooking experience. A number of environmentally safe cures are now available to help keep the solar chef free from an insect invasion, and concentrating on the day’s solar cuisine. New, green pest control products can be kept nearby, or, may be used prior to setting up the solar cooker for the day. Yes, happily, a plethora of “green” bug repellent are there to help you.
Take a look at how you can rid your solar cooking experience of pests without the risk of hurting yourself and others.
Some folks use a number of solar ovens and solar cookers in combination on a good sunny day. That way, they can cook and prepare the food for storage, or near future consumption or freezing it.
For today’s menu, we simply used the GoSun Solar Stove to bake the Italian hot sausage with peppers, onions and mushrooms.
Sometimes the food comes out of the solar ovens so well, you feel like applauding!
So, crank up your solar cooking by using more than one cooker to make great meals. If you fail to crank up solar cooking, then try a crank radio or flashlight. They can help you when the power fails.
Get out your 3 quart dark colored metal pot, and get ready to make a tasty meal in the All American Sun Oven.
You will need and need to (recipe):
1/3 cup your favorite tomato sauce
4 medium potatoes, quartered
1 package of polish (beef or turkey) kielbasa
2 medium onions, coarsely chopped
1 green bell pepper, sliced
1 tbs minced garlic
1 tbs fresh ground black pepper
4-6 mushrooms, coarsely chopped
1/2 medium-sized zucchini, chopped
Preheat your solar oven. Slice the kielbasa into 1-2 inch pieces, mix in all the other ingredients and aim the solar oven. With good sunshine, and temperatures over 300 degrees, this meal should be ready in 1/2 to 2 hours. It took us 3 hours this time on a partly cloudy day with temperatures between 260 and 300 F. We do not use salt to cook for health reasons, but you may want to add a teaspoon for flavoring.
And, wow, was it good coming out of the All American Sun Oven:
So, everything came out tasty and delicious, despite the passing clouds that caused the temperature to drop from time to time.
For those of you who really, absolutely, positively must have a fire-cooked meal, here is a solution. Try investing in a small but efficient “rocket” stove. There are many good stoves like this currently available. Watch this video to see how easy it is to use a EzyStove.
In our area, at this time of year, there seems to be a plethora of fresh zucchini. Friends that garden, as well as family members, all seem to have a plentiful patch of zucchini this year. So, why not take advantage of those lovely green things they give ( sometimes force upon) you. Of course, the markets are also stocked with them, just in case you cannot find a helpful garden friend.
Well, here is a simple and tasty solution for that delicious green surplus; Zucchini Parmesan Rounds. This recipe will take you only a few minutes to prepare and only an hour, or so, in your solar oven to bake.
Slice the zucchini into rounds and lightly bathe them in olive oil and then a mixed egg. Lightly your cooking pan with oil and space the slices on the bottom. Lightly sprinkle with garlic powder, then black pepper (my zesty friends use red pepper). Next, sprinkle a layer of bread crumbs and then spoon grated Parmesan onto each slice. Pop it into the oven and let the sunshine do its magic. Surprisingly, they come out moist and delicious.
And…an hour later with passing clouds.
We also used the All American Sun oven to bake some of these tasty slices.
Just another demonstration of what green living, gardening and solar cooking, in this instance, can do to make your life better. If you are interested in starting your own garden, seed your thinking a little. Visit www.solarovenshop.com
The Solavore Sport Solar Oven is a box-style solar oven. It is quite lightweight at 10lbs, but can accommodate 2, 3 quart cooking pans. If you happen to take your solar cooking on the hiking trail, it is good to know that the oven, food to cook, and pans can be easily strapped onto a backpack. You have the responsibility then to “find your place in the sun”. It is commercially available at a reasonable price, and comes with some great recipes.
As with many box solar ovens, temperatures can easily reach 300 degrees Fahrenheit. With our experience, the Solavore is probably closer to 250 degrees in our region on a sunny day. The Solavore also features the use (optional) of sturdy aluminum reflector panels. We find that, in our area, the reflectors do help keep the overall cooking temperature higher. However, it has been successfully used to bake bread, cakes and dehydrate cherries, grapes and tomatoes, without the use of the reflector. However, when preparing meat, when the cooking time may take 3 – 4 hours, the reflectors help keep that temperature higher and steadier. This is especially true when overhead clouds may come and go. See the video example below.
Yes..the Solavore eats sunshine like a herbivore eats grass. It is efficient and uses no fossil fuels to cook a hearty meal. The chef inhales no gas fumes or labors over a smokey fire. Solar cooking is clean, eco-friendly and fun!
Oh, it may take an hour or so longer than your conventional gas or electric oven, but the rewards are greater. For one thing, you don’t heat up your kitchen on a warm day. The food cooks in its own juices, retains vitamins & tastes great.
Of course, since the Solavore is fueled by sunshine, it also works fine on winter’s sunny days. In fact, its built in feature of being able to set it up on its short side, enables it to catch the sun’s low angle rays even in mid-winter.
Okay, so it works great. So, while it cooks you meal, at least in warmer temperatures, why not “swing” into your survival hammock. Try it out and be sure it functions properly if the need arises. Take a siesta while the solavore cooks your meal and enjoy your parachute hammock.
The GoSun Solar Stove has a fantastic design. With its combination of evacuated tube technology and reflectors, it obtains 500 degree Fahrenheit temperatures quite frequently. With this solar cooker, also due to its design, high temperatures are still possible on cloudy days! Your choice, bake sweet potatoes in less than an hour, or hotdogs in 28 minutes! They were a bit toasty, so 23 minutes would have been about right. Its performance will truly astound you.
See how much fun you can have with your GoSun. See it below in action.
The unit only weighs about 6 pounds and can easily be strapped to a backpack. The reflectors and tube are easy to clean up and keep at the ready.
So, go solar cook with the GoSun and have some fun. While the food is cooking, and if you have some youngsters around, educational kits for WindPower are a great way to pass the time and actually teach/learn something.