Cookware on a hike is among the essentials. In a camping spot, you can cook a hearty oatmeal «with a smoke» or a thick soup right in the forest or on the riverbank and boil water in a kettle for aromatic tea, which is even tastier to drink in nature.
Manufacturers use plastic, aluminum, titanium, and stainless steel to produce cutlery for camping purposes. The best cookware is made of food-grade aluminum and stainless steel. However, it is essential to be cleaning titanium carefully and take good care of all equipment. Otherwise, it will not be able to be stored for a long time.
How to Remove Burnt Food from Camping Cookware?
How to wash different types of camping utensils from traces of carbon deposits, grease, or an old layer of soot? Since the use of the device often takes place on fire, in any case, the outer part gets dirty much faster than on a household hob. To bring back the outstanding appearance of titanium backpacking cookware, some methods of dealing with the most common food stains might be useful.
Titanium Camping Cookware
Titanium dishes are not whimsical in their care. They can be washed with detergents, cleaned with metal sponges, stiff brushes, and abrasive powders. The titanium camp gear is not afraid of temperature extremes and aggressive solutions.
The easiest way to remove carbon deposits from a titanium frying pan or pot is to use special solutions for titanium products. But remember to make sure that the manufacturer allows this. Better to play it safe than to lose an expensive item.
Cast Iron Camping Cookware
Difficulties in the care of cast iron cookware are nothing more than a myth. For a long service life of such kitchen utensils, it is enough to know some recommendations and follow the use rules.
Unfortunately, it is not always possible to wash the pot right away. For such cases, there are some methods for cleaning cast-iron cookware:
- Use the mixture of salt and vinegar. The procedure is straightforward. It is enough to mix these components until a slurry is formed, apply to the device and wait 20 minutes. Then clean it well with a sponge.
- To clean cast-iron cookware outside and inside, you need a container that will fit the utensils. Pour water into it, add 0.5 tbsp. soda, one tube of glue, and 0.5 grated laundry soap. Bring to a boil and boil for 1 hour. Wait until the liquid has cooled down, and wash the utensils under running water with detergent.
- How to clean the outside of the cookware from fat? Vinegar, water, and detergent will help with this. As in the previous case, you will need a container. Dilute vinegar and water in it in a 1: 1 ratio. Add three tablespoons of detergent and boil for 2 hours. Wash under running water.
- Soap for dishes will remove food debris that has burnt inside the pot. To do this, use a few drops of soap, take the cast iron pot, fill it with water and boil for 30 minutes.
Stainless Steel Camping Cookware
Stainless pots have a long service life and excellent performance. You can choose the best stainless steel camping cookware cleaning method yourself.
For those who do not like to use household chemicals, there are several options for cleaning dishes with improvised means:
- The outside can be cleaned with baking soda. First, you need to wash the dishes with detergent and a soft sponge. Mix baking soda and water until a kind of gruel is formed, apply it to the outer surface, and leave for 2-3 hours. After the time has elapsed, wash the pan or any other item in the usual way.
- The vinegar will help remove grease stains on the outside and inside. It is necessary to apply it to the surface of a non-abrasive sponge and carefully treat all contaminated areas. If the stains are pretty old, you can add a little citric acid.
- The ammonia will help remove stains on the stainless pan and restore its shine. You need to wash the dishes in the usual way. Dilute a teaspoon of ammonia in 1 liter of filtered water. It is necessary to process the utensils with this solution. It will regain its glossy appearance.
Aluminum Camping Cookware
Aluminum cookware is quite popular due to its lightweight and ease of care. It is not for nothing that aluminum cauldrons are the most popular kitchen utensils in the forest during backpacking. A big plus is the ability to take the device with you on a hike. Aluminum cookware heats up quite quickly, saving cooking time, which is essential in a camping kitchen.
Low weight is an advantage in choosing a cauldron from this material. For it to serve for a long time, you need to know the rules of care:
- The first use of aluminum cookware does not require lengthy preparation steps.
- Before you start cooking your favorite dishes, you must thoroughly wash the device from the oil residues. To do this, you need to use running warm water, detergent, and a soft sponge.
- All aluminum kitchen utensils have a thin oxide film that is very easy to break down. Use non-abrasive sponges to avoid damaging the surface of the cookware.
After washing, it is enough to wipe the cauldron dry with a paper towel. This completes the preparatory stage of the kitchen utensils.
How to Remove Black Tar and Soot from Camping Cookware?
Every hiking enthusiast wants to keep the original appearance of camping utensils as long as possible. However, cooking involves the use of various oils and fats, which leads to the formation of deposits, which spoils the whole picture. There are many chemical and natural detergents for cleaning dishes from grease and soot. The main thing is to choose the right one.
Cast Iron Camping Cookware
Before washing the cookware, they must be freed from food debris and rinsed with hot water. One of the vigorous cleaning agents is the liquid used to clean the sewer pipes. It is ideal for removing black tar and old grease from cast iron pans. For the most effective result, the dishes must be placed in the following solution:
- 5 liters of water;
- 5 liters of cleaning product.
Soak time will depend on how dirty the item is. The solution can remove even the most persistent plaque.
Stainless Steel Camping Cookware
Cleaning cookware with a non-stick coating from carbon deposits or with another non-stick coating from grease is a more difficult task. Most often at home, it is solved in this way — soda ash and silicate glue are combined in a large saucepan.
You have to boil this mixture in the dirty cookware. How much to boil is determined by the degree of impurity. Even 30-40 minutes is okay if there is too much black tar. After this procedure, the cookware should be removed and washed with a sponge under the intense pressure of water.
Enamel Camping Cookware
Every backpacker should remember the fact that the layer of enamel with which the cookware is covered is relatively fragile. You need to take good care of enameled camping cookware, so it’s better to follow these recommendations:
- Use the mixture of water and soda from carbon deposits. Pour water into the product, and add two tablespoons of baking soda (for 3 liters of water) to it. Leave the resulting solution for 2 hours. At the end of the time, wash the product with detergent and a sponge.
- Use the soda and water without prolonged soaking. Pour baking soda over the burnt area and slightly moisten with water until gruel forms. Leave it on for 20-30 minutes and rinse with a sponge and detergent.
- Water and a liquid detergent will help get rid of dark stains on enameled dishes. Put water in a saucepan, add one spoonful of detergent to it. Boil for 5 minutes, let cool and wash under running water.
Aluminum Camping Cookware
Aluminum cookware is quite popular due to its lightweight and ease of use. It does not need to be specially prepared. Consequently, it is widely distributed among many backpackers. Like any other kitchen utensil, an aluminum cauldron is prone to dirt. It is not always possible to immediately wash the product after picnics, and, as a result, contamination can accumulate. To clean aluminum objects, it is enough to use dishwashing liquid. It can gently remove soot.
Do’s and Don’ts When Cleaning Camping Cookware
Modern titanium camping cookware is something that should last a long time. Of course, manufacturers produce fairly durable products. However, they will not last long if mishandled. Thus, special care is essential. Some helpful tips highlight what can and cannot be done while storing and cleaning utensils. Paying attention to them, you can extend the life of your camping utensils.
If you want to know how to clean enamel pot, here are some tips to help you keep your camping equipment in good condition:
- Wash it after every use. Fresh carbon deposits are much easier to remove than many layers of soot.
- To avoid rusting, wipe the device dry after washing and store it only in a dry, well-ventilated place. Even a little moisture can trigger rust.
Taking care of the equipment after cooking does not take much time and effort. It will last more than one year with attentive washing and proper storage, delighting your loved ones with delicious field cuisine.
During the cleaning and storage of utensils for a hike, these are the things that you should never do:
- Do not use abrasive sponges, as they can leave scratches on the surface of the dishes, in which dirt will accumulate.
- Do not use detergents containing chlorine or alkaline components. From them, the surface of the plates may darken.
- Do not wait until the grease will be dry and stick to the surface. It is advisable to wash the cauldron immediately after use when the kitchen utensils are cold.
When you know how to clean enamel cookware, you will not have to deal with dirt. When using these simple rules, the cookware will last as long as possible during numerous camping journeys.
How to Avoid Getting Your Pot Nasty in the First Place
There are several tricks to avoid damaging the surface of your cookware. They will help to prevent the somewhat tricky process of washing dishes from rust and plaque.
Cook in Freezer Bags
One exciting way to preserve enamelware camping cookware is to cook in freezer bags. This way you can cook eggs, fish, and vegetables. Instead of using a saucepan, you can put all the food in a freezer bag and put it in the bowl with water. After that, you only need to wash the package itself. This will allow you to use it further.
Cook on Camping Stove
To avoid burning soot and black tar, it is worth choosing a particular camping stove for cooking. It can be pretty heavy, but it will be advantageous.
A camping stove is a great option as it will prevent the outside of the cookware from getting dirty. Cooking in this way will prevent the utensils from burning on the outside.
Preheat Oil in the Pan before Adding Food
To prevent the food from burning and the saucepan becoming covered with dirt, you can add more oil to the pan before cooking and let it heat up well. This will create a non-stick coating, and it will be much easier to wash off food residues afterward.