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May 15, 2014 11:29 AM

safety of food in long car ride?

Taking a beach vacation involving an 8 hour+ car ride. Would like to purchase some bulk food for large family (16) in advance with balance to be replenished locally. What advice can you share - hopefully by personal experiences. Thinking of taking opportunity of local Costco and Restaurant depot pricing and quality as opposed to small beach town local supermarket.

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  1. Beachtown being Sandbridge VA.

    1 Reply
    1. re: smilingal

      Hey! According to Mapquest, there's a Trader Joe's and a Harris Teeter not far from Sandbridge! Lucky you!

    2. Depends on what you're taking, but if you will have perishables, a simple styrofoam chest is all you will need. I recently made a long drive with smoked fish. I used an inexpensive foam chest, put a solid block of ice in the bottom ( I just left it in the bag it came in ), packed the fish around it in sealed bags, then poured cubed ice over it to fill the chest. I made one overnight stop after which I drained the water and replenished the cubed ice. I didn't have to replace the block for a two-day trip. The ice was readily available in supermarkets.

      1. 16 people? wow...
        It depends on where you will be staying...
        when i took a trip to Cape may, i took my Lodge 12 inch skillet and my kitchen knife because i know almost always, those rented place have the worst qualist of pots(especially frying pans) and knives. I'd also advise you to take some kitchen tools as thongs, spatulas.

        Last year on a family road trip, i had a cooler that gets connected to a cigarrette holder. I brought meat, bread, cheese, butter, eggs, coldcuts, fruits..etc to save money and save time from shopping locally. I also brought some of my favorite spices like rosemary, garlic powder and thyme even salt and pepper since some places don't stock them. I also brought some cooking oil and onion too. Brought rolls of bounty.
        But in your case, you have 16 people...that sounds tough!
        Good luck and have fun! and remember, bacon and butter make everything taste good!

        6 Replies
        1. re: Monica

          Just do you use "thongs" in the kitchen? ;)

          1. re: Philly Ray

            since it never gives enough coverage, i use it to hold hot pots and such. and if you run out of underwears while traveling, you can even wear it too.

            1. re: Philly Ray

              I use them to get the man of the house to do the dishes and take the garbage out. ;)

              1. re: Philly Ray

                Just do you use "thongs" in the kitchen? ;)

                It *is* a beach vacation.

                1. re: Philly Ray

                  The real question should be how do you use the spatula with the thongs?

                  1. re: chocolatetartguy

                    To help with the bottom biscuits, of course.

              2. We use dry ice blocks. Be very careful with what you put directly on top of the block because it will freeze (learned the hard way with eggs). Our ice block lasted three days before it evaporated.

                And obviously don't touch the ice block. :-)

                3 Replies
                1. re: UTgal

                  Gotta be careful with dry ice, tho. Frozen carbon dioxide expands like you wouldn't believe when it sublimates (that is, when it changes from a frozen state to a gaseous state), and if your container is sufficiently air tight, you have a bomb on your hands. Also, even from the trunk, CO2 can make it's way into the passenger compartment and suffocate you. Keep the vehicle well ventilated with dry ice on board.

                  1. re: UTgal

                    Also don't put dry ice directly on bottom of cooler. It will crack the cooler. And wrap it in paper, not plastic.

                    I just stay away from it. Too many dangers.

                    1. re: Muddirtt

                      Yes. I think we will heed the warnings and avoid the dry ice.

                    1. re: Hobbert

                      Freeze plastic bottles nearly filled with water. For a 2-liter, this will take a couple of days. The bigger the bottle, the better. It will take longer to thaw than a bag of ice cubes and there are no worries about drowning food in melted ice. Plus, once the bottles defrost you have ice water to drink. You could use lemonade, Crystal Light, or other flavored waters instead of tap water. When I carried lunch on a walking mail route, I used a frozen juice box in my lunchbag. Freeze some of them if there are young kids on the trip.

                      1. re: greygarious

                        I do the same thing for lunch at work. A couple of frozen juice boxes keep things cold and have a nice slushy quality by lunch time.