I love overlanding and I love food. More than half the stuff I carry in my Land Cruiser is food or food preparation related. In my travels we have met other food obsessed overlanders, but none as dedicated and talented as the fine group that started the blog Life Remotely.
We met Life Remotely while driving in Chile when they prepared an amazing multi-course meal over a camping cookstove and charcoal fire. Little did we know then that a few months later we would caravan around Argentina with them for a few weeks and get spoiled (and fatter) as they cooked amazing meals and put the finishing touches to an actual cookbook they were then preparing. Yes – a real cookbook! These guys wrote and self published “Forks in the Road – Recipes From Overlanding The Pan-American Highway” while driving a stock 4Runner around the Americas.
In their own words: “Every recipe in this book was discovered, adapted, cooked, written, revised and meticulously photographed somewhere between Tijuana, Mexico and Ushuaia, Argentina. The first recipes were written mere miles from The Death Road in Bolivia. In the following months they were photographed on the coast of Chile, edited on a cruise ship in Antarctica, formatted in a Uruguayan hotel, and finally submitted for publishing on a beach in Brazil.”
Now that I own a hardcopy of “Forks in the Road”, I find it even harder to believe that many of the photos in the book are of meals we shared while driving around Argentina. Why do I like the book so much? Other than my personal history with the authors and their making of it, I really enjoy the easy to follow recipes and the great photography. Though many of the 85 recipes found inside the book feature ingredients originally found in Latin American countries, they offer alternatives ingredients that may be available elsewhere. It’s all about adapting while on the road, right?
One thing that the “Remotely’s”, as we affectionately call them, are proficient in is cooking on charcoal with (and without) a cast iron Dutch oven. In the book they break down Dutch oven cooking for us novices very well and with easy to follow instructions. There is also an entire chapter dedicated to cooking over charcoal, with instructions on how to bake, braise, roast, smoke and steam over charcoal, as well as how to slow-roast an entire lamb over an open fire Argentinean style.
One of my favorite chapters is the one titled, “I’m Tired and Dirty and Just Want to Eat Dinners”. It’s exactly what it sounds like! It’s dedicated to quick, yet hearty and tasty meals for when you arrive late to camp and just want a good, warm filling meal. However, they’re not just proteins and carbs. They are tasty meals such as curried chicken or a “deconstructed shepherds pie” – both are making me hungry just thinking about them!
I always tell people I meet on the road that they need to have “The Remotely’s” cook for them. In the absence of that option, I think owning a copy of Forks in the Road is the next best thing. It’s full of great recipes that are not only flavorful, but easy to prepare. I also like that it’s available in both paperback and as an ebook for Kindle. Whether you’re living on the road, or just planning ahead for your next weekend getaway, Forks in the Road will make a perfect addition to any cookbook collection.