Impress your friends camping this summer with a make-ahead meal | VailDaily.com

Impress your friends camping this summer with a make-ahead meal

A little prep beforehand makes for an easy meal at the trailhead

Check out Instagram on any given day this time of year and you’ll see plenty of photos showing camping trips to Moab in Utah and Fruita. If you are heading out on your first camping trip of the season, impress your camping mates with this make-ahead quiche with a sweet potato crust. The time spent in the kitchen beforehand will allow you to spend more time on the hiking and biking trails.

Ally Stephens is a chef and owner of Season to Taste, which offers in-home meal preparation for families and people on the go. Stephens says that a little preparation can go a long way.

“You could show up at the campsite straight from the grocery store, but you’ll find it’s much more enjoyable and simple to cook at your campsite if you can do a little prep before you hit the road,” Stephens said. 

This sweet potato quiche can be fully prepped and cooked ahead of time, making it a simple and nourishing breakfast that will fuel your day’s worth of activity.

“Instead of the typical pastry crust you’ll find paired with other quiches, this crust is created by simply baking sweet potato rounds. Among other nutritional benefits, sweet potatoes pack a vitamin A punch and offer anti-inflammatory benefits,” Stephens said.  

Stephens adds nutritional yeast to the quiche for an extra boost of flavor and protein.

“Nutritional yeast is a dairy-free and gluten-free yeast that can boost your energy, reduce inflammation and offers nearly eight grams of protein per serving,” Stephens said.

“This would be best prepared a day or two in advance and stored in the refrigerator until ready for your camping cooler,” Stephens said. 

The morning you decide to serve the quiche, pull the quiche out of your cooler before heating, cover with foil and warm on your grill over low heat until warmed through. If you’d like to speed this process up, slice the quiche and place into individual foil squares and warm through on the grill.

Watch today’s video on http://www.vaildaily.com to see how to make the quiche, and view the recipe below, along with more camping-friendly meal ideas like breakfast burritos, hobo packs and campfire nachos.

Sweet Potato Quiche Recipe

1 large sweet potato

1 tbsp ghee or coconut oil plus sea salt for roasting potatoes

3/4 of a pound of turkey sausage (or ground sausage of choice)

1 tsp ghee or coconut oil

2 large leeks, white and very light green parts only, sliced thin

Sprinkle of salt

1 tbsp water

7 ounces fresh baby spinach chopped

8 large eggs

1/4 cup organic coconut milk full fat, blended before adding

2 – 4 tbsp nutritional yeast

1/2 tsp fine grain sea salt

1/8 tsp black pepper

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Peel your sweet potato and slice it into very thin rounds. Coat your hands in coconut oil and grease the potato slices, then arrange in a 9-inch pie dish or disposable pie pan, overlapping, along the bottom and up the sides. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt. 

Place “crust” in the preheated oven for about 20 minutes or until cooked through, then remove from oven and lower the heat to 400 degrees F. 

Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and cook sausage to fully brown, crumbling as it cooks. Remove with a slotted spoon to a plate and set aside. 

Turn heat down to medium-low and place one tablespoon ghee or coconut oil in a skillet. Add sliced leeks and toss to coat, then sprinkle with salt and add the water. Cover skillet and cook two minutes, remove lid and stir, then re-cover and cook another two minutes until softened. 

Stir the sausage back in and add the chopped spinach, about one minute then remove from heat.

In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, coconut milk, nutritional yeast, salt and pepper. 

Place all the sausage mixture into the pre-baked “crust”, then pour egg mixture over the top. Bake in the preheated oven (now 400 degrees) for about 25 minutes or until center is set and puffing up. Remove from oven and allow to sit at least 10-15 minutes before slicing and serving. Or keep in the refrigerator until your camping trip if it is the next day or day after. Serves eight people.

Other camping meal deals

Pre-made breakfast burritos: fully cook and assemble your breakfast burritos with your favorite fixings, wrap in heavy duty aluminum foil and throw them in the freezer until you’re ready to head out camping and they will be ready to throw on the grill for an easy breakfast with no clean up so you can get on with the activities.  

Overnight oats: Mix equal parts milk and oats in a Mason jar and top with blueberries, vanilla extract, and honey for a touch of sweetness. Close the lid, shake the jar, and place in your cooler overnight for at least 4 to 5 hours.

Hobo packet dinners: Pick up some heavy duty foil and place chopped veggies, potatoes or grains, seasonings in one (or multiple packets depending on how many mouths you’re feeding) and another packet with cleaned and sliced chicken breasts or your protein of choice along with a favorite sauce or seasoning. These go directly into the campfire until cooked through. 

Campfire nachos: Use a disposable 9-inch by 13-inch foil baking pan and layer either tortilla chips or thinly sliced sweet potatoes along with your favorite nacho fixings and heat directly over the campfire or grill. Sweet potato nachos may take a little bit longer than tortilla chips but Stephens says they are worth it.