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Recipes for camping

Margaret Earle

Tinned chickpeas are a useful thing to keep in your caravan cupboard. As well as being tasty they are a good source of protein. Here’s a couple of recipes you could use them in.

Chickpea and cucumber salad

Serves 4 as a side salad

This salad is very simple to make. My three-year-old granddaughter really likes it. Last time I was camping with her I didn’t have any fresh mint, but the salad was still tasty and refreshing.


1 tin chickpeas

half a cucumber, approximately

¼ cup plain yoghurt


Garlic (either fresh or from a jar)

Fresh mint (chopped finely)

Ground cumin seeds

The quantities above are approximate.

Add more or less depending on your preferences and the look of the salad.

You can add other things too like diced capsicum.

  1. Drain chickpeas.

  2. Chop cucumber into thin slices or chunks about half a centimetre square.

  3. Mix yoghurt, garlic, salt, mint and cumin seeds and pour over chickpeas and cucumber.

  4. Eat straight away or store in a cool place until you eat it.

Spiced chickpea and pumpkin tagine

Serves 4


2 Tbsp oil

1–2 chopped onions

3 cloves of chopped garlic (or 2 tsp garlic from a jar)

600g of pumpkin cut into small cubes

2 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp paprika

1 tsp turmeric

1 cinnamon stick

½ tsp chilli powder

1–2 chopped capsicums

400g tin of chopped tomatoes

2x 400g tins of chickpeas (drained)

Zest and juice from ½ lemon

1 tsp honey

Salt and pepper

  1. Fry onions and garlic in the oil for about 5 minutes.

  2. Add cubes of pumpkin. Stir in ground cumin, paprika, turmeric, cinnamon stick and chilli powder and cook for 12 minutes.

  3. Add chopped capsicum and tinned tomatoes.

  4. Bring to the boil then add chickpeas.

  5. Simmer gently for 15 minutes until all the flavours are blended.

  6. Before serving, add lemon zest and juice, honey, salt and pepper.

Serve with rice.

Dehydration instructions

This recipe can be prepared in advance and dehydrated for a tramp or trip away. To do this:

  • simmer the chickpea and pumpkin mixture gently until all fluid has evaporated.

  • Finally add the lemon zest, juice, honey, salt and pepper and heat through.

  • Spoon on the trays of the dehydrator.

  • More detail on dehydrating meals can be found in Issue 6, Spring 2023, Camping the Kiwi Way.

Keeping meat longer: vacuum pack

One way to keep meat and other food longer is to vacuum pack them. The food still needs to be kept cool but it will last much longer (six to eight days).

Sometimes you will see vacuum packed meats for sale in food stores and some supermarkets are happy to vacuum pack meat when you buy it.

You can buy relatively inexpensive vacuum packing machines. They require electricity to run so you can’t use them in the wilderness but are useful when you prepare meals for tramping or when it will be difficult to buy fresh foods.

You can also create your own ready-to-eat meals by vacuum packing home-made dehydrated meals.

Bonus tip: keep meat longer by vacuum packing

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