Bean Hole! - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-20-2002, 03:33 PM   #1
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Bean Hole!

Whatís it good for? :wave
Camping without electrical hookup (so the crock-potís at home), yet you want to be away on an all day excursion?

Granted, these days youíd probably just stop at a restaurant on the way back to the campground, but sometime you might be staying and playing in a remote location, where eating out just isnít an option. Thatís no reason to settle for a supper of bean dip and chips! You can make a Bean Hole.

What is a Bean Hole?

With a Bean Hole, you cook your vittles in your cast iron dutch oven (with lid!), just as you would on your campfire. Except with the Bean Hole, the fire is in the hole, and the whole thing is buried.

How to make a Bean Hole

First, with that shovel you always bring along but never really seem to need, you dig a hole, about 15 to 18 inches deep and about 6 inches wider than the diameter of your cast iron dutch oven. Reserve dirt for later use. (This part could be done a day ahead!)

Then you build a fire adjacent to the top of the hole. (Variation: build the fire in the hole.)

Next, throw your food together and into your cast iron dutch oven. Suggested are things like beef or pork roast, potatoes, onions, and carrots, ala those Sunday- after- church dinners that Moms used to make. Add enough water so the bottom of the pot is just covered. Close lid.

When the fire next to (or in) the hole has burned down considerably, rake plenty of coals into the hole (if they arenít there already), and lower the covered dutch oven into the hole, on top of the coals.

Rake the remaining coals into the hole, on top of the dutch ovenís lid, and also around the sides of the pot. (If you built your fire in the hole instead of adjacent to it, build another small fire on top, and let this burn down as before.)

Gently fill the Bean Hole with dirt. (You will have dirt left over.)

Go away and play for hours on end. Your dinner is slow-cooking, in the ground, as those banked coals smolder all afternoon. When you arrive back at camp, dig up the dutch oven, being careful (of course) not to disturb the lid.

Have a great meal, just like if youíd slow cooked it in an oven or crock pot. :party

Of course, there are several caveats to the above: :u
--You do need that shovel, and a cast iron dutch oven, with lid.
--Unless the ground is very soft, those collapsing shovels that are perfect for a small, molded fiberglass travel trailer, arenít the best choice of implement.
--Some campgrounds might frown on you digging a hole at your campsite.
--Even if a Bean Hole is permitted, you must, of course, refill it with dirt when finished, and leave the site as if the hole were never there. This makes it somewhat labor intensiveÖ werenít we on vacation?
--Not recommended for a rainy day (light rain okay, but no gully washers).

Next Weekís Recipe:
[/i]Bean Dip and Chips![/i]
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Old 09-21-2002, 10:25 AM   #2
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Sounds good Mary!

Sounds great Mary!

I'm the proud owner of two brand new dutch ovens. We made a pizza in one of them (in the oven, in our house).

But with my luck, I'd forget where I buried my dutch oven and have to dig a bunch of holes while looking for it!
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Old 09-21-2002, 10:40 AM   #3
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Dig a hole

Boy you wouldn't want to try and dig a hole here in Atascadero. We have rock. I had to rent a Jack-hammer to plant my garden.:o
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Old 09-21-2002, 11:27 AM   #4
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Good point!

Yes, I considered that the ground might be too hard, but I forgot to mention that one should mark the spot where their dinner lies waiting. It's an important point, because you come back exhausted from a day of hiking, fishing, or whatever, and you sure don't want to waste any of what little energy you have left, digging in the wrong spot!

But then, it's not like anybody's ever really going to do this... although it might be fun at the beach.
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Old 09-21-2002, 02:48 PM   #5
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misdirection

If you do mark the spot, use a little misdirection. Put up a sign that says, "There's no food buried here."

Most places in AZ I couldn't dig a hole deep enough to bury a pie tin. I understand there is some soil down where the Collados live, but I haven't seen it.
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Old 09-26-2002, 08:40 PM   #6
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Hay Box

You can also use a "Hay Box," which is basically a box filled with straw, for this purpose. It was done extensively in the UK during WWII as they often had power cuts and rationing of electricity.

If there's any interest in this, We'll post the directions as well as some procedures for using them.

Let us know.
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Old 09-26-2002, 08:59 PM   #7
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Post! Post!

I'm interested in the Hay Box! But then... I kind of like really labor intensive things that are of no use to much of anyone... not that your Hay Box fits that description, of course.:wink
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Old 09-28-2002, 07:52 PM   #8
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looking for hay box directions

I'm still looking for the hay box directions - haven't forgotten this but can't find the darned book they are in.
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Old 09-29-2002, 01:46 PM   #9
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Fire in the hole!

Will Geer to Robert Redford:

"Not enough dirt!" "Seen it right off..."

Jerimiah Johnston


Remember that scene?
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Old 09-30-2002, 03:10 PM   #10
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Haybox cooker

Nathan, an internet search for haybox cooker turns up a bunch of sites! Thanks for the idea! I think I'll build one

Here's one haybox link google search found:

http://www.nswatd.scoutlink.org.au/ATDProj...roj3/Haybox.htm
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Old 09-30-2002, 08:48 PM   #11
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Thanks!

That's great charles, thanks. I must have been searching on 'hay box' or something.
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Old 10-12-2002, 11:44 PM   #12
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haybox and coals

Hmmmmmmm, wonder how ya keep the coals from starting the hay on fire and burn up the whole dang thing! :lol :spin
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Old 10-13-2002, 10:44 AM   #13
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No Coals in Hay box

Hi, Bill. :wave

Thanks for bringing my Bean Hole thread back to the top of the forum index!

From looking at the link on Charles Watts' post, with the haybox the coals are left in the campfire ring. The haybox is just used to insulate the cooking pot, keeping it hot longer so the food continues to cook from residual heat.
:sunny
My initial reaction to your question, though, was it works like a strawbale house: won't burn because of no oxygen...

Of course, now I think on it again, my reaction is you're just kidding around. (Okay, I admit I'm a little slow.) :wink

But I don't want anybody to think they can fill a box with hay and build a fire in it! :nope
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Old 10-13-2002, 01:21 PM   #14
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It has been suggested (from time to time) that my "humor" is a bit dry for some.:P
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