Cooking Off-Grid at The Shack
I've purchased land with a small hunting cabin that will someday be my retirement homestead. In the meantime, I go camping up there at every opportunity. The previous owners left behind an amazing woodstove inside and a old, dilapidated propane barbecue grill outside. I've been grateful for both.
In the colder months (yes, I camp up there in the winter) I use the woodstove for my meals. Learning to cook on/in a woodstove has been trial and error but between using hobo packs and finding a perfectly sized enameled cast iron dutch oven, I've been able to prepare some really delicious meals.
In the warmer months, I cook outside on the grill. The grill was so old and rusty that I had to replace the grill immediately, but that was a cheap and easy fix. However, the connections and knobs for the propane no longer function. I still used it as a charcoal grill/smoker and using apple tree branches for cooking gave my meals the most wonderful taste!
Imagine, apple wood smoked Delmonico steaks with a glass of wine. Mouth-watering!
|Early spring camping - Delmonico steak, hobo packet potatoes, and a glass of wine|
But the limping along with the little rusted out grill has lost it's appeal and I wanted a "real" grill. And the rusted out grill is so tiny. If and when I have camping guests, that size of that grill is not adequate.
But which model should I get?
After my adventures with the woodstove, the propane BBQ grill, and the grill as a charcoal/wood smoker, I knew what my criteria were.
- a side burner (for the times I just want soup, stew, etc)
- a gas grill
- and a smoker
- an easy-to-read gauge (because I want to try baking while camping)
The Char-Griller Duo 5050
I've been window-shopping grills for nearly two years. I will soon be camping for week. I needed to make a decision. Fortunately, when I finally decided to take the plunge, the grill I had decided on was on sale! Perfect timing.
I chose the Char-Griller Duo 5050 for several reasons. It has the side burner I need. That side burner will be perfect for my little Moka pot of coffee. I will be able to barbecue using the propane side if I choose or I can use the charcoal side and add my lovely apple wood for smoking. There is a Char-Griller smoker attachment, but after using my old dilapidated grill for smoking, I'm pretty good at it without that added accessory and expense.
|Char Griller Duo 5050|
The Char-Griller Duo is not as heavy duty as some other brands. But at this point, the cost point is a priority for me. Also, I'm not sure I could move the heavy-duty grills around the deck by myself.
In the future, after I rebuild The Shack and have a real outdoor kitchen (off-grid summer kitchen) I will likely either purchase a higher end grill/smoker or I will have a custom stone BBQ/oven built. But in the meantime, I think this Char-Griller dual fuel grill is the perfect solution.
Of course I will write updates on whether or not I've made a good decision and the delicious test meals I'll be cooking.