Category Archives: Road Food

Hey Cupcake!

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cupcakery, Hey Cupcake, Austin, Texas, cake, frosting, finger food, travel, photography

When we saw this super cute cupcake trailer on the side of the road, we had to stop. How could we resist a sweet treat from an Airstream-esque bakery on wheels?!?!

cupcakery, Hey Cupcake, Austin, Texas, cake, frosting, finger food, travel, photography

The irreverent sense of fun didn’t stop there; the flavor combos were hilarious. A Michael Jackson, anyone?? Mike went with plain vanilla (of course!) while I noshed on a Sweetberry.  This mobile cupcakery isn’t far from our campground on the outskirts of Austin, so I have a sneaking suspicion we’ll be back!

cupcakery, Hey Cupcake, Austin, Texas, cake, frosting, finger food, travel, photography

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Simple roasted potatoes

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When we’re boondocking, we keep the slide in, the jacks up, and conserve our water as much as possible.  We often eat out during those times, but occasionally, after a a long day of driving, it’s nice to have a home-cooked meal.  I handle water rationing by coming up with something semi-homemade that doesn’t take a lot of pots and pans.

These roasted potatoes are a great accompaniment to a store-bought meatloaf.  I got both at Trader Joe’s.  The meatloaf was in its own microwavable package, and the potato medley came in a mesh bag that let the colors shine through.  I loved the multi-hued small spuds!  Mike was a little thrown off at first because he thought the purple potatoes were rotten.  

The bag held about 16 potatoes, so we had leftovers for breakfast potatoes the next morning.  Dip into a bagged blend of greens from the fridge for a side salad, and you’ve got a complete meal that doesn’t dirty every dish in the rig.

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Ingredients:

  • Medley of small potatoes (My bag had about 16 potatoes in it.)
  • coconut oil, melted (about 1/8 cup, just enough to coat)
  • Minced garlic, to taste
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

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Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  • Wash potatoes and cut into rough slices.
  • In a medium bowl, toss potatoes with coconut oil, garlic, salt and pepper.
  • Roast uncovered for about 30 minutes in the oven until they’re fork tender.
  • Serve with a slice of meatloaf and a side salad.

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Brunch at the diner

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Lemon Curd Pancakes

There’s something decidedly decadent about brunch.  The late hour, the combination of breakfast and lunch dishes, the leisurely pace.  If you count it as two meals in one, you can forgive yourself for eating too much, especially if you’ve gotten some exercise beforehand.  That’s why I was able to nosh without guilt when we brunched at Phillips Avenue Diner in Sioux Falls’ historic downtown after our chilly walk in Falls Park.

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Of course, I helped things along by thoughtful ordering.  A spinach and tomato eggwhite omelet was accompanied by a side of fresh fruit in place of toast or potatoes.  I simply had to try the lemon curd pancakes, though.  Normally, they come in stacks of three, but that would’ve been over the top.  So, I asked if I could have just one, and our waitress happily obliged, charging me an extra buck for the privilege.  The pancake was infused with lemon essence.  Juice, I think, not extract.  Instead of syrup, it was crisscrossed with glaze, a dollop of lemon curd and some raspberries to add color and a flavorful contrast.  Nummy!  The omelet was good, too.

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The neat thing about downtown Sioux Falls, besides its history, is the SculptureWalk.

SculptureWalk is an exciting exhibit of outdoor sculptures displayed year-round in downtown Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Artists place their sculptures in the program for one year, and all sculptures are aggressively promoted to the public for sale. Artists are eligible to win any one or more of the 14 awards in the Best of Show, People’s Choice voting and the random drawings. Awards total to $15,000.

Two impressive pieces are on the corner near the diner.  My favorite?  ‘Look and You Will Find It’ by artist Kate Christopher.  It’s so simple but so striking.  The group of standing men, all with heads downcast except one, has a compelling message: the path to discovery reveals itself when we lift our eyes.  I learn the truth of that every day on this amazing journey.

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Look and You Will Find It

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Butterfly by Jaque Frazee

The Great Tomato Massacre

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RVs are called “rolling earthquakes” for a reason.  The vibration and swaying wreak havoc with things like door latches and pictures and knick-knacks that aren’t properly secured.

Even when you think you’ve successfully battened down the hatches, there are still things you didn’t count on.  Like the swing of an overstuffed mesh produce basket and its proximity to the kitchen wall.  Piles of fresh, juicy tomatoes do not fare well in a situation like that.   Two words: Produce. Bloodbath.

The basket was easy enough to take down and wash.  The wall, however, was more problematic.  I am still finding tomato seeds encrusted in unwelcome places.

Lesson learned.

Lazy Lasagna

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Pasta, red sauce, ground beef and lots of ooey-gooey cheese.  Yum!  Lasagna is always delicious, but sometimes it’s a pain to make.  That’s why I was excited to find a shortcut recipe over at Iowa Girl Eats.   It takes all the hassle out of making this classic Italian dish but leaves all the scrumptious flavor in!  Use reduced fat shredded cheese and lean ground beef for a healthier twist on comfort food.

Since we have no dishwasher in the RV (unless you count me!), I appreciate that this entree uses only two pans.  Clean-up is a lot easier!

Ingredients: 

  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 24-ounce jar of marinara sauce
  • 1 1/2 pounds frozen cheese ravioli (Do not thaw.)
  • Shredded reduced-fat Italian or Fiesta cheese blend (Mike is a cheese fanatic, so we use beaucoup fromage.  Adjust for your tastes.)

Directions: 

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Brown ground beef in a large skillet over medium-high heat until no longer pink.  (You can season with garlic salt and pepper if you’d like.  I didn’t, though, and it was still very tasty.)  Drain and set aside.
  • Spread 1/4 cup marinara sauce in the bottom of an 8×8 baking dish.
  • Add 1/2 the frozen ravioli, ground beef, sauce, and cheese. Repeat layers one more time.
  • Cover with a sheet of foil (spritzed with non-stick olive oil spray); then bake for 1 hour.
  • Remove foil and then bake for 10 more minutes, until cheese is bubbly.

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Baking it to the streets

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Vegas’ food trucks have been plentiful and celebrated for the last couple of years, so I’m not new to the food truck phenomenon.  However, I was intrigued by the lines of food trucks on the National Mall in D.C.  In Vegas, they’re usually only gathered in one spot for special events.

FroYo.  Popcorn.  Pretty standard fare.  American food?  Burgers and onion rings apparently qualify.  Lebanese food out of a truck?  Interesting!

The one I liked the best, though, was Curbside Cupcakes.  First, it was a pink truck.  Love it!  Then, the clever alliteration.  Too cute!  It was also a relief that only three flavors were offered: Red Velvet, Chocolate Delight, and Vanilla Bean.  Too many options equal too much time spent deciding on the side of the road.

After the heat of the jalapenos in my lunch at Elephant & Castle, I thought Vanilla Bean would be a refreshing choice, and I was right.  The vanilla flavor was spot on, and the dark flecks in the frosting made me feel fancy.  The ratio of frosting to cake was ideal.

It was gone by the time we finished our walk back to the parking garage.

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Cherry Hill Park (College Park, MD)

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We picked Cherry Hill Park campground in College Park, Maryland, because it was the closest park to D.C.  We were in town to inter Mike’s mum with his dad, who was buried in Arlington National Cemetery in 2003.  Evelyn passed away in early 2012, but it took a while for the family’s schedules to sync up so we could reunite Evelyn with her husband of over 50 years.

Cherry Hill is a pretty park.  The office and camp store has generous hours – from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.  Staff is friendly and helpful.  We drove our Jeep into the city, but you don’t have to if you stay at Cherry Hill.  Transportation is available from the campground multiple times daily, and the staff can direct you to the tour that’s best for your needs.  Only minutes outside the park grounds are a grocery store, a Starbucks, a home improvement store and a variety of restaurants.  After all your running around, you can take a relaxing hike along the Nature Trail at the edge of the park.

There are spots for every type of rig at  Cherry Hill, and the list of amenities is long:

  • 400 RV and tenting campsites with water, sewer and electric hookups
  • Sites are open year round.
  • 30- or 50-amp service
  • Handicap accessible
  • Restrooms with hot showers
  • Pets are welcome, and a pet walking service is available.
  • Carpeted laundry room with 19 washers and 20 dryers
  • Free Wi-Fi which was pretty reliable and reasonably fast while we were there
  • Cable TV
  • Miniature golf
  • Playground
  • Game room/Arcade
  • Large screen TV lounge with fireplace
  • Two swimming pools
  • Hot tub and sauna
  • Nature trail
  • Propane refills
  • Firewood
  • On-site Star Café and Grill that’s open until 9 p.m.
  • A camp store with groceries, souvenirs, gifts, t-shirts, and lots of RV supplies
  • Free movies, shown seasonally, in the Starlight outdoor theatre

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