weekend in strange kitchen - help?
so i'm escaping for the weekend with my sweetheart. we're staying in a condo in the off-season in provincetown that has a kitchen, but i have no idea what the state of the kitchen is.
help me think of what to pack for the weekend: meals that are not a huge pain, don't require a ton of utensils or ingredients, and will be comforting and delicious for the two of us.
Sounds like a casserole weekend to me. All you'll need is a chopping board, a knife, a casserole dish, maybe a big spoon, and your ingredients -- and maybe some aluminum foil or plastic wrap to cover it over while it bakes or nukes.
Are you looking for things you can make now and reheat then? In your place I would probably pack portions of home made granola for breakfast and a piece of ham or bacon with a couple of good cheeses and pasta with a little container of olive oil. Then buy milk and eggs and salad things when you arrive. Going supermarket exploring when you get there might be fun too; it's one of my favourite things to do in a new place.
Sweet idea - make a trifle with all the layers instead of the whipped cream on top, and add the topping when you are ready to eat it. Great cooler-transportable dessert.
I enjoy cooking elsewhere. We have a big plastic tub for travel with the following: Couple of (selected) pots, couple of pans, wok; chef's and paring knife; box grater, whisk; wooden spatula and spoon; plastic ladle; cutting board; tiny food processor or mortar and pestel (my choice); vegetable peeler; strainer; chopsticks (for cooking and for eating); hand held blender; lemon-lime juice extractor (hand double lever type); cork screw; some plastic containers, European (?) style double chamber (aluminium!) coffeee maker, hand flour cutter, rolling pin (a wine bottle); and stuff to keep knives sharp.
I take a similar tub of ingredients.
Asian Home Gourmet makes a variety of nice spice paste packets without chemicals or msg; all you do is add meat/fish/tofu and/or yogurt/chicken broth in a few cases ... one of them might work for an evening if you are so inclined.
I actually love having a limited kitchen when on vacation, because it gives me an excuse to make lots of delicious and fresh items using local ingredients that do not require a lot of cooking. All I would bring is one good cast iron or porcelain/caste iron plated fry pan that can be used on stove top or in an oven, a stir pot of the same, and a couple of microwave friendly containers. I am sure there is a place to buy food items locally, so I wouldn't bother to bring a lot of food with you, other than items that you have a hard time finding or that travel well (granola, dried fruits, pasta, etc.). I would assume you have some sort of cook top and a microwave in the condo, although perhaps not an oven, so although someone previously suggested casseroles, make sure that whatever you make or plan to make can be heated in a microwave, or on a stovetop. Once there, seek out all the lovely, fresh local produce, dairy and meats. Be inventive. The locals must eat, so you'll be able to make do as well. :-)
I love commando-ing a strange kitchen. I do make sure to bring a knife (typically two: one chef and one paring), and a cutting board. It's the bare minimum. If you forget, you can use the bottom of a coffee cup to get a knife slightly sharper, but a rental place (and most of my friends houses) have ridiculously dull blades. The place will probably have salt and pepper shakers. But even remembering cooking oil will help.
I typically don't want to actually cook in a strange kitchen, so I bring things like pasta and home made bolognese sause, enchiladas with home made tomatillo sauce, already cooked ribs, or homemade meatloaf. All very easily reheatable, more or less one dish to clean. (Those were actual meals from our last weekend away for a ski trip, in a cottage that we knew had an infinitesmally small kitchen--with no dishwasher).