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RV cooking: The benefits of advance prepping

Seared ahi tuna was the star of this sushi rice bowl, enjoyed by the campfire at Mount Rainier National Park. (Leslie Kelly)
Seared ahi tuna was the star of this sushi rice bowl, enjoyed by the campfire at Mount Rainier National Park. (Leslie Kelly)

There's much joy that comes from rising to the challenge of cooking in a tiny home on wheels. But having a full kitchen in our summer home base in Bellingham allows me to get even more creative... and messy, yes, that's true.

In advance of our quickie trip to Mount Rainier National Park, I decided to try something new. I've been craving sushi, but haven't been going out, not even for to-go. So, I bought some short-grained rice and a packet of sushi rice seasoned, a mix of sugar and powdered vinegar. It turned out really well.

Also bought frozen ahi, dried shiitake mushrooms and those slightly bitter/sweet Japanese turnips savvy shoppers find this time of year. The plan hatched in my food-obsessed brain involved prepping all those ingredients separately and transporting them for assembly at the campsite.

The turnips were roasted for 25 minutes and finished with a teaspoon of miso paste. Mushrooms were rehydrated, the excess moisture squeezed out before being sprinkled with the 'shroom-driven Umami Seasoning from Trader Joe's and a splash of truffle oil.

Only the tuna would be cooked the first evening of our trip, seared in my trusty cast iron and finished in a quick bath of wasabi and soy sauce, pickled ginger on the side.

The meal was pretty spectacular, served on a bed of kimchi slaw, but the star of the campfire dining experience was the bottle of lovely Arizona Sake that had been purchased in April and squirreled away for a special occasion. The return to one of our all-time favorite national parks seemed like just that. 

It took a couple of hours to get all the ingredients ready for this memorable dish, which is why I'm glad I did the prep in advance. That way, I wouldn't miss one moment of John's exceptional campfire.



Leslie Kelly
Leslie Kelly is a freelance writer.