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Next month my oldest daughter is graduating from college. We are driving back to Oregon for her graduation and then enjoying a little camping/road trip afterwards. I’ve been sharing our menu plans for the trip. Because we will be gone 10 days and we are doing different things during that time, I’ve divided the posts up into segments.
Segment 1: Car Trip is where I share the foods we’ll take along for our 18+ hour trip from Wyoming to Oregon.

Segment 2: Visiting Family and The Graduation is my meal plans for that time. We are staying with family but taking our own foods so as not to overwhelm them with our brood. We’ll be having a post graduation lunch at the beach!

Segment 3: Camping at the Beach. We’ll be in one place for a few days enjoying the Oregon Sand Dunes.

This post will focus on the first part of our trip home. Unlike our trip to Oregon in which we plan to sprint there, the trip home will be slow and leisurely. We’ll drive 4-6 hours a day taking a route with parts that are totally new to us.

In the Segment 3 post, we had just finished up our quickish breakfast at camp and are now on the road. If everything went as planned food wise, we restocked at the grocery store down the road and I picnic lunch prepared for us plus I have a few other preps in the works.

We’ll be leaving the Oregon Coast for Central Oregon. We have another camp spot (yurt) reserved for one night at a state park there. While in that area we also plan to visit the Newberry National Volcanic Monument and specifically the Lava River Cave. We won’t have alot of time to spend there but I think it will be worth it.

Since we’ll probably be on the road or at the volcanic monument around lunch time we’re planning a picnic lunch. Our goal anytime you see ‘Picnic’ is to actually stop and picnic. We always hope to find someplace semi-nice. However, I remember one of our ‘picnics’ at nothing more than a wide spot in the road inside our car in pouring rain. So we do try to be flexible.

Wednesday Picnic Lunch: Sprouted Lentil Slaw. This is an idea from both Erin and Wardeh at GNOWFGLINS. Erin has her Slaw as part of this post. Wardeh expands on the idea and does a bonus video (available for purchase here look for July 2010) showing how she makes this Slaw into a full meal. I’ve made some variation of the Slaw several times and we like it very much (note: I’ll use half the lentils here and save the rest for tomorrow). I’m not quite sure what to have with this main dish salad. My first instinct would of course be bread but this far into the trip it is unlikely I’d still have a fresh loaf if I tried to bring it from home. I could pick up a loaf at the store but then I run into that unsoaked/unsprouted issue and I’m trying to limit that. I wonder if I could make a loaf of artisan bread from my bucket bread and cook it in my dutch oven. I’ve never done that. I think I’d have to put it in the fire pit and put coals on top of it. Any one tried that? Do I really want to bake bread while I’m camping?

Wednesday Camping Supper: Steaks, Baked Potato, Green Salad with Yogurt/Dill Dressing (I’ll make extra dressing for tomorrow). I love steaks cooked over a fire (who doesn’t?). While I’ve mentioned that I’m not okay buying chickens from the grocery store, we do buy beef from the store if necessary. We try to pick out the organic label if we have that option (or sometimes we get buffalo instead of beef but man that can be expensive) but if our only option is non organic beef we get it. The really bad thing about it (besides for how they are raised in CAFO’s and all the corn that is shoveled into them) is that grocery store beef doesn’t have the flavor that we are used to from our grass fed (and finished) local rancher beef. BUT I’ll be taking along some local made bbq sauce in hopes of getting a little bit of flavor. While I’m cooking up steaks, I’ll do up an extra one for tomorrow’s lunch.

Thursday Camping Breakfast: Fried potatoes (I’ll bake extra the night before so they cook up quick) and eggs. I’ll also cook up some flat bread (from the bucket bread I mixed up at the previous camp) while the potatoes are frying to have for lunch.

We’ll be heading out after breakfast toward the Oregon/Idaho border. Thursday night we’ll be staying in another state park. This time instead of a yurt, we’re staying in a teepee. I enjoy the novelty of the idea. This campground is on a large lake/reservoir and it sounds like there is lots to do there in the way of hiking and bird watching. If the girls do get fishing licenses while we are camping at the beach, this will be another great spot to use them.

Thursday Picnic Lunch: This lunch will be on the road somewhere between central Oregon and Eastern Oregon. The steak from last night and the flat bread that I cooked up in the morning will become a Steak Sandwich (on flat bread) with a yogurt dill dressing, we’ll add veggies sticks (more dressing for dipping) and fresh fruit.

Thursday Camping Supper: Sprouted Lentil Tacos on corn tortillas. These are the lentils that I soaked on Sunday (at my folks house) and rinsed through the week. I used half of them yesterday for Lentil Slaw. Can you believe that I’m doing Stretchy Beans even while camping?! While I’m getting dinner put together, I’ll hard boil some eggs for lunch tomorrow and also cook up some more flat bread from my bucket bread.

Friday Camping Breakfast: We want to get a semi early start this morning. I’m planning on Sourdough Waffles (the teepee has power), Yogurt and Fruit. I’ll also need to make egg salad before we head out.

During this portion of the trip, I’ll make sure to keep rinsing my sprouts (lentil and garbanzo) that I started at the Beach campground but, overall, my prep will be very minimal mostly involving cooking extra of things. I think that is a good thing. I suspect by this time in the trip the ‘fun’ of my kitchen being out of doors will have worn off a bit.

I’ll still be needing to make sure that we have snacks available during this segment. One thing that I’ve decided to do is get a small stash of Larabars that I can have for later in the trip (after the home made stuff is gone). I had some swag bucks gift cards and ordered them by the case on Amazon. They were half the price that they are at my local health food store but really since I used gift cards they didn’t cost me anything. I’ll also have replenished fruit and veggies and probably nuts along the way. The nuts will probably not be raw and they won’t be soaked and dehydrated but they’ll be okay in limited amounts. I don’t believe the Larabars use soaked nuts either which is a bummer.

I have to admit, one thing I’m noticing a serious shortage of in my menu plan is Chocolate. At home we can whip up a cake or some brownies or no-bake cookies but out and about that is not so easy. I’m thinking one (or all) of my restocking stops will include me buying the darkest chocolate I can find.

What would you do for the chocolate situation? Any quick and easy chocolate ideas I could use on the road?

Photo Credit: Oregon State Parks

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