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Travel Cooking Gadgets

Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
12,789 posts
27 reviews
Travel Cooking Gadgets

I'm kinda surprised that in three pages of threads - no one has mentioned any sort of cooking gadget. :)

I like perusing through the travel store at T/A truck stop on the Interstate near me. They cater to truck drivers and I think they have every cooking appliance known-to-man that plugs into a cigarette lighter! I think they even have a microwave that works in a truck, too! :)

Not that I would buy any, I just don't need them. But I am amazed at how much of a range they offer.

I knew of a couple that brought a full sized Mr. Coffee with them, in their suitcase, wherever they traveled. I guess it was a priority for them.

So - are any of us secret-travel-chefs? Or just heat up water for coffee or ramen? Anything that you would recommend to try, or not-try?

Sydney, Australia
Destination Expert
for Sydney, New South Wales, Cruises
Level Contributor
11,711 posts
167 reviews
1. Re: Travel Cooking Gadgets

Puhleease Noah,

I don't need another Travel Gadget!!! I'll be a shaking, weeping mess in the corner if I buy any more useless gadgets that I pack and don't use !!! lol

Seattle
6 posts
2. Re: Travel Cooking Gadgets

If I was doing a car trip I'd probably want some cooking gadgets along. Can you imagine putting some stuff in a crock pot in the AM when you take off and having a home-cooked meal when you stopped in the afternoon?? Doesn't sound too bad :)

Sydney, Australia
Destination Expert
for Sydney, New South Wales, Cruises
Level Contributor
11,711 posts
167 reviews
3. Re: Travel Cooking Gadgets

I've seen some shows on TV a while back where raw food was packed really well in tin foil/aluminium foil, then placed on the Carburetter(??) and voila, after 20 mins or so of driving, all was cooked !! Not sure if it had that just cooked in motor oil smell !!!

Florida
8 posts
4. Re: Travel Cooking Gadgets

I always travel with an electric immersion heater, a travel cup, tea bags and coffee bags (not instant).

It doesn't take up much room and I can always have coffee in the morning before I go to breakfast and a cup of tea in the evening when I am dead dog tired at the end of the day. I know lots of places have coffee and tea in the rooms these days - and I use theirs when available -- but this is my little luxury that when I need it, I really need it.

I know another couple that always takes a coffee pot (small Mr. Coffee type) and coffee and suplements with the local coffee. They have had some really good and really bad experiences!

Burnaby, Canada
Level Contributor
12,640 posts
272 reviews
5. Re: Travel Cooking Gadgets

"I always travel with an electric immersion heater .."

Heh, that's something I did for a good many years of solo travelling .. and it worked well for me too!! Haven't found the need in recent years of travel though -- with the advent of electric coffee pots in most rooms, and all. But I still have my "trusty" immersion heater, and even have the 'velvet' cloth bag that it came with -- and can recall those days when it sure served me well on many a cold morning!!

Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
12,789 posts
27 reviews
6. Re: Travel Cooking Gadgets

I've seen those immersion heaters before - the look like a little metal coil, right? A few of the hotels I have been at have had a little 'store' down at the lobby - a place to pick up some single serving packs of oatmeal, ramen, etc I'm sure those heaters would have come in handy there.

I am a room-service-coffee junkie when out of town. Just a little indulgence I guess. I've seen those hidden-camera shows where they caught hotel housekeeping cleaning the in-room coffee pots and glasses in a less-than-appealing way. So I avoid them like the plague. And I heard a rumor about flight attendants washing out nylons in the coffee maker. It is probably an urban legend - but I just can't get the thought out of my mind.

So I do the overpriced room-service-coffee thing. But if the economy keeps on going the way it is - I might have to invest in one of those immersion heaters! :)

-Noah

Burnaby, Canada
Level Contributor
12,640 posts
272 reviews
7. Re: Travel Cooking Gadgets

Noah .. yes, that's the rig - it fits over, and dangles into a cup - perfect for heating up that 'cuppa' in the morning (if/when stuck where you can't catch one, like it used to be in some of the motels where I had to stay!!).

Another favourite travel companion of mine was a small 'hot-pot'. Mine was metal, could hold 2-3 cups of fluid, and I used it while 'on the road' often. I prepared soups, pork & beans, and whatever - it was a handy little rig, and took up little space in a piece of luggage.

Down in Mexico a couple of years ago, we saw a woman who travelled with a small electric fry pan. Her grand-daughter was a fussy eater - she said this was a great rig to have along, she could cook up what the little girl liked, and when she wanted it. It seemed odd to us at first, to see someone travelling with such a thing, but when she explained why, and showed us what she could do with it, it seemed like the perfect rig for her (them).

Cheers!!

Mission, Canada
Level Contributor
9,096 posts
85 reviews
8. Re: Travel Cooking Gadgets

DougOz; I've known of the Carburetor cooker method for years. Friends have used it on long distance trips. They would just prepare their dinner at lunch, and leave it in foil - very well wrapped - over the carb' until they stopped near dinner. Just like putting foil wrapped food over the camp fire ... kind of.

Guys & gals; I used to drive many miles with an electric immersion coiled, hanger heater in the glove box ... for years ... and it saw use maybe once for making tea. Now when on long trips, I just haul out my camp stove and set up ... or just stop at a roadside diner, coffee shop or gas (petrol) station for food or drink.

When on out-of-country trips, I avoid carrying cooking gadgets unless I know I will be going hiking, and even then my destination guide will prepare that equipment for me so I don't have to bring it.

Usually, in my timeshare or other hotels, there are lots of amenities for me to use which preclude me having to bring cooking equipment.

As for being a closet chef ... maybe, but I think of myself as more of a food experimenter / lover.

Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
12,789 posts
27 reviews
9. Re: Travel Cooking Gadgets

I remember seeing an episode of "Real People" back in the late 70s/early 80s where a guy had hooked up a cooker inside his car engine - but I think he was using the exhaust manifold. He also rigged up something on the tailpipe at a lower temp that I think was doing his vegetables.

Craziness.

After once using the warming plate of an in-room coffee maker to warm up a croissant for breakfast - I used to, jokingly, come up with ways to cook food using only things found in the hotel room. You could use the light bulbs, hair dryers, coffee makers, irons, even the back of the TV for heat sources. I even figured out a way to make a type of deep-fried ice cream, although I never tried it.

I had always thought of coming up with a novelty cookbook for such - but then I searched "hotel room cooking" on Google and found I was at the end of a long line of people who already had similar ideas. :)

-Noah

Mission, Canada
Level Contributor
9,096 posts
85 reviews
10. Re: Travel Cooking Gadgets

Noah; sadly ... isn't that always the way it goes. We seem to think we have a great idea, and look to follow through on it, only to find someone else has already beat us to it....

Darn! I better stop giving away all my tips and advice here... before I finish my book for submission to the publisher.... Nah! I will always give out info free in "bits and bytes" as time provides.

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