in the Kitchen
MAKING A BOX OVEN
I have heard
of many ways to make a box oven. This one is a simple, easy method, which
gives you a good basic oven for starters. As you become more confident
with your box oven skills, you can then build your own, custom oven.
a good sturdy box. A good starting box is about the size of a printing
paper box or lid to a banana box. Heavy moving boxes about the same size
work great. Do not start with a large box. If your box has holes in it,
I like to plug with pieces of cardboard cut from another box. Tape the
cardboard cutout in place with duct tape. DO NOT USE PLASTIC PACKING TAPE.
Plastic tapes will melt. Plugging holes will help prevent you from putting
your finger through the aluminum foil once the box is wrapped.
heavy-duty roll of foil (I like the wide stuff) start covering the box,
shiny side out. I usually start from the middle of the top of the box
with foil about 1 inch over the edge and work width wise first (see Figure
1) and hold foil down with tape. Work down the side and into box. Make
sure that your foil lays flat and you do not puncture the foil. Mold the
foil into the side and corner seams as you go. Continue wrapping until
you have reached the edge of the foil. Overlap foil edge by about 1 inch
people only foil the inside of the box. This will work but covering the
entire box makes it less likely to get burnt by hot ashes or coals.).
next piece of foil by overlapping the first piece by 2 inches or more
based on the size foil being used. Repeat until the width of the box is
completely covered. Repeat this step running the foil the length of the
box, making sure every exposed piece of cardboard is covered. If there
is any cardboard exposed on the inside of the oven, it will burn. Do not
use any tape on the inside of the box. Tape can be used to hold foil in
place on the outside only.
oven is now ready. You may want to add handles or a rack to your next
box oven. But that's for another day.
BOX OVEN OPERATION
want to work a box oven and you don't know how. Well, sit back and read
on cause by the time I'm done, youll be cooking up a storm.
have your box oven made, you will also need the following items.
1. four empty
2. stainless steel cookie sheet (you can use Teflon or non stick but it
could get scratched because of outdoor handling).
3. charcoal (get a good brand as it burns better)
4. brick or foil wrapped block of wood about the same size
5. tongs to lift and place coals
6. hot pad mittens to lift box
7. ingredients and utensils to make whatever it is you are making
you have all your stuff, let's get cooking.
Determine how many coals are going to be needed. The average rule of thumb
is that each coal will give off about 20 degrees F of heat each. Having
taken higher math in college, this tells me that if I need to bake at
350 degrees F, I need to divide 350 by 20. The answer, 17 1/2 is the number
of coals that will be needed (be brave, use 18 coals, cutting a coal in
half gets messy). On really hot days and cooking in the sunlight, you
may want to use one or two less, on cold days, use one or two more. It
also makes sense that the larger the box, the more coals are needed. I
bought one of those sit in the oven temperature gages and put it in the
oven as checked the temp. this gave me a good idea on number of coals
Get coals going. Remember BSA regulations say that NO liquid starters
may be used. I like to use a charcoal chimney. Count out the number of
coals needed and add a few extras. Coals need to be completely white for
proper cooking. This will take about 20 minutes to happen using a charcoal
chimney. While coals are starting, fill the four empty soda cans _ full
with water, sand or pebbles. These will be used as legs for your cookie
Before the coals are ready; you should prepare whatever it is you are
going to bake. So get busy.
In the fire ring, place the four filled soda cans so that they fully support
the cookie sheet at the four corners. If you want, you can add two cans
on each side in the middle for more support. (NOTE: If you are baking
in a casserole dish, place the casserole dish on the cans. Coals can be
spread out. Coals do not have to be under the dish for the oven to bake
Once coals are ready, place coals, using tongs, in the middle of the cans.
Spread the coals out so they are just touching each other.
Place cookie sheet with whatever on top of cans. Place box oven over cookie
sheet. Place brick (or foil covered block) under the front lip of the
box oven. This allows air to get it for the coals.
you are now baking in your box oven. Wasn't that easy? Here are some helpful
When you lift the box to check to see how things are cooking, use your
glove mittens. The box will be hot.
Don't lift your box too often. This allows the heat to escape.
If you are going to be cooking over an extended period of time, you may
need to add coals. Coals are usually good for about 1 hour of cooking.
If your dish will take longer or you are doing several dishes, you should
start another set of coals prior to running out so they will be ready
about 45 minutes into your cook cycle. Add new coals as required. (NOTE:
This is a trial and error process so the more you cook with your box oven,
the better you will get at judging.)
Hint 4 If
it is windy, be careful when installing and removing your box oven. Ashes
may fly when hit by high winds, which can be a fire hazard. The ashes
may also get on your food. Try to set up your cooking area in a non-windy
place of try to set up a wind block so the wind does not hit the coals.
Hint 5 When
selecting a cookie sheet to use, make sure that there is at least 2" between
each side of the cookie sheet and the box. This will allow for proper
in the Kitchen
Make Your Own Magic Rainbow
the main ingredient in this exciting science trick. It will entertain
you with a swirling display of colors and patterns that will last for
several minutes. You can repeat this trick many times, and each time the
results will be different. Just like a kaleidoscope, the design will change
right before your eyes.
needed: a shallow dish or pie plate, one cup of whole milk, food coloring
(red, blue and yellow or 3 colors of your choice), a few drops of liquid
milk into a shallow dish and let it sit until it has warmed to room temperature.
(The experiment will not work quite as well if the milk is cold.) Squeeze
several drops of food coloring into different areas of the dish. Alternate
colors for best results.
bottle of liquid dish detergent over the dish and squeeze gently so that
a few drops of detergent will drip into the milk.
the milk will start churning and swirling, mixing the colors into beautiful
designs. The swirling will continue for about 5 to 10 minutes, gradually
slowing down. Adding a few more drops of detergent will make it last longer.
This experiment works because the detergent will not mix with the milk,
so it "pushes" the milk out of the way, causing it to swirl. This swirling
action mixes the food coloring to make the rainbow of colors.
reminder: When you have finished the experiment, dump the rainbow milk
down the sink drain so no one drinks it.
Turn Milk into Plastic
SUPERVISION IS REQUIRED
are made from petroleum oil. Oil formed in rocks over millions of years
from the bodies of billions of small sea creatures. You can make a similar
"plastic" in a few minutes using milk, another organic substance:
Heavy cream, saucepan, and vinegar.
Ask an adult
to warm some heavy cream in a pot. When it is just simmering, slowly stir
in a few teaspoons of vinegar. The acidic chemicals in the vinegar react
with the organic mild chemicals. Keep stirring until it becomes rubbery.
Let it cool and wash it under running water. You have your own plastic.
Stuff like Gak
Make a material
that you can shape, make balls and have lots of fun. Kids of all ages
will have fun with this one!
Optional food coloring
clear cups water
for measuring mixing
1/2 teaspoon Borax in 1/2 cup of water
2. Pour 1/3 cup of glue into the water and Borax. Food coloring is optional
3. Stir the mixture and remove it from the cup
4. Observe the properties of GAK
5. Experiment with different amounts of Borax and examine different properties.
up according to the package, in a clear "gold fish" bowl. Chill in the
fridge until the gelatin is thickened, but not solid. Stir in gummi fish.
Tropical Island Slush
5 Cups water
4 Cups sugar
12 ounce can frozen orange juice concentrate
One 46 ounce can pineapple juice
Two 2-liter bottles of lemon-lime soda
water and sugar to a boil. Remove from heat and cool. Add juices and bananas.
Freeze. Take out of the freezer two hours before serving. Serve with two
2-liter bottles of chilled lemon-lime soda.
French bread, sliced meats, sliced cheeses, sliced fresh vegetables, Italian
bread in half. Layer on meat, cheeses, and vegetables. Sprinkle with Italian
dressing. Cut into individual portions.
80 Foot Banana Split
few days here in Alabama have been in the 90's. Ice cream is sounding
pretty good right now, so I thought I would include this recipe I found.
boys, 80 feet of rainguttering, 17 gallons of ice cream, 30 bananas, 5
cans of whipped topping, and 5 large jars of maraschino cherries and what
do you have? An 80-foot banana split! Here's how you do it. Fasten together
80 feet of raingutter with duct tape. Line the inside of the raingutter
with one length of aluminum foil. Fill with sliced bananas, dozens of
scoops of ice cream, whipped topping and cherries. (Be sure to save some
of the ice cream and topping for the leaders to enjoy later.) Furnish
each boy with a plastic spoon, and caution them to turn their billed caps
backwards. Line the boys up on either side of the ice cream filled raingutter
with instructions that spoons are to be held high in the air until the
signal "GO". When you're ready give the signal and stand back! The ice
cream will disappear in minutes. This is an exiting after lunch treat.
Don't forget to have some type of water supply handy so the ice cream
covered boys can wash up.
-- Thanks to Scouters
in the Miami
Unbaked Peanut Butter
1 stick of butter
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup Karo syrup (light)
3/4 cup peanut butter
4 cups corn flakes cereal
sugar, butter and Karo syrup. Cook in saucepan on medium heat until boiling.
Boil for 3 minutes. Add cereal and mix thoroughly. Drop by Tablespoons
on baking sheet. Allow to cool.
for 15 - 20 people of 1 - 2 snackin' dudes.
to Scouters in the Denver Area Council
3/4 cup shortening
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 egg 1/2
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. 2.In a large mixing bowl, cream the
shortening and sugar. Blend in peanut butter, salt, egg, vanilla and flour.
Mix well. 3. Shape dough into balls about 1 inch in diameter. Press your
thumb in the center of the ball, creating a 1/2 inch depression. 4. Bake
for 12 to 15 minutes and cool on a rack. Fill the centers with a tart
jelly/fruit preserve. Makes 3 dozen
vanilla flavored almond bark
15 1/2 ounce package Nutter Butter cookies
black jelly beans (or purple)
bark following package directions. Dip 2/3 of each cookie in melted candy.
Shake gently to remove excess coating. Place on wire rack with waxed paper
underneath. For eyes cut jellybeans in half and place on cookies. Cool
completely before removing from rack.
to Scouters in the Trapper Trails Council
12 ounces Twizzlers,
ounces milk chocolate candy melts
into 1 1/2" pieces. Slice each piece in half lengthwise. On waxed paper
place 4 legs (pieces) on each side and then drop 1 teaspoon melted candy
in the middle for the body. Use a toothpick to smooth uniform circle and
connect all candy pieces. Cool completely before removing from the waxed
from Chris-- Almond or chocolate bark can typically be found in the aisle
with cake making supplies in your grocery store. I also found it at Wal-Mart.
You can also buy candy melts (basically the same thing, different shape,
little higher cost) at cake and candy supply stores and craft stores.
Call your local store to see who has it. I always melt the bark on low
(Power level 3) of my microwave in a glass pie pan. It takes a little
bit longer, but the bark will melt smoothly, without lumps. If you don't
have a microwave, an electric skillet with water in the bottom can be
used. Set the control at the lowest heat possible. Experiment, but I remember
from candy-making classes I took years ago, that melting candy bark or
melts is best done at low temperatures.
to Scouters in the Trapper Trails Council
Fred's Trail Mix
1 Bag (large)
Eagle brand Snack mix
1 16 oz. bag M&Ms
1 8 oz. bag semi-sweet mini M&Ms (cooking section of grocery store)
1 24 oz. can raisins (use as much as you think you need)
1 can mixed nuts (Adjust quantities to taste - this will get you started!)
enough for a group of 6 for a weekend
-- Thanks to Fred
know that the Pilgrims gave the cranberry its name? They thought the pink
cranberry blossoms resembled the heads of cranes, so they called them
"Crane berries." This was later changed slightly to "cranberries."
pictures of cranes and the cranberry bogs of New England. During your
den meeting, make fresh cranberry bread for your den snack.
-- Thanks to Scouters
in the Viking Council
Size : 16
1- Gallon size ZipLoc (tm) plastic bag
1 lb. powdered sugar
cube butter (1/4 lb.)
1- 3oz. cube of cream cheese
1/2 tsp. vanilla
to 1/2 cup of cocoa
the ingredients in the ziploc bag and squeeze out all the air. Squish
and smoosh the bag until all the ingredients are well mixed and there
is a creamy consistency. Add any favorite flavors or stuff (raisins, peanut
Take a spoon
1/4 cup butter or
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup maple flavored syrup
tablespoons firmly packed light brown sugar
cups coarsely crushed Quaker 100% Natural Cereal, original flavor
all ingredients except cereal in 1 quart saucepan; bring to a boil. Simmer
over medium heat about 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Pour over cereal;
mix well. Press into greased 8" square baking pan. Chill until firm;
cut into bars. Store in refrigerator.