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Hunter's Stew

It tastes better than it looks. Really. Photo by Mary Reed.

Even if you hunted for the meat at the grocery store, this meal baked on hot coals will give you mountain cred when you serve it to your campmates.

Prep time: 30-45 minutes; plus some time to burn your fire down to coals
Feeds: 1 hungry mountain man/woman

1 chicken breast (or 8 ounces of venison, fish, beef)
1 medium-sized potato
2 medium-sized carrots
1 onion
1 zucchini or small squash
1 teaspoon butter or cooking oil
salt and pepper to taste
slice of fresh lemon (optional)
1 large swath aluminum foil (3 feet long, 1 foot wide)

Start a nice fire to generate some hot coals. While the fire is burning into coals, slice the potatoes, carrots, onion and squash into thin slices. Do not peel them, as this is just waste to carry home. Fold the aluminum foil in half to result in a 1½-foot-long sheet of foil with double thickness. Place the butter or oil in the center of the foil. Layer the potatoes and carrots across the foil, leaving room along the edges. Set the meat on top of the veggies. Layer the onion and squash on top of the meat. Add salt and pepper to taste. Fold over the foil on all sides and create one sealed package of food. Place the foil package on the hot coals. Cook for 30-45 minutes, depending on how hot your fire is and how much dinner is packed into the foil. Turn it over occasionally. With a pot handle or oven mitt (don’t burn it), grab the foil, place it on a heat-resistant surface and open it up. Squeeze some fresh lemon onto it and chow down. Caution: contents will be hot and delicious!