Team Camp Food

Rather than getting some good training miles or winning city limit sprints, my goal for team camp was to feed everyone.  There was quite a bit to get done in the upcoming days, with breakfast, dinner, ride food, post-ride food, snacks, and coffee for 13+ hungry teammates.

First, and most frustrating, was the trip to Costco.  I definitely do despise that place, but where else can you buy 88 strips of bacon for 8 dollars?  Hank and I blew through there as quickly as possible, leaving with a literal truck-full of food.  An extra stop to a more manageable grocery store and we were set for food, almost.

Since we'd be arriving late Friday night, and some brave folks were riding to camp, we decided to get dinner taken care of for us.  We trusted Dr. Davey Jones to put together some seasonal variation of his PanAfroLatinEurAsianAmericana cuisine.  We set of to camp with more than 10 lb. of roasted roots, quinoa salads, orange chicken, turkey, hummus, and more.  Over at Mike's Sausalito, we love Dave.  He runs his catering business out of the little kitchen in the Bait Shop (1 Gate 6 Rd., Sausalito, CA) across the parking lot and makes sandwiches for us in the meantime.  He's into the whole seasonal thing, and you can see his jars of homemade sprouts, local veggies, and if you're lucky, you'll walk in when he's just pulled a whole roasted turkey out of the oven.  I can say without regret that I eat there every time I'm at the shop.  Shoot him an email to get your next party/event/bridge tournament taken care of with delicious food.

With the helping hands of teammates and our favorite Dave Parrish, everything else went smoothly.  I truly could not have done this without the help I received, especially from DP, but I'm working on it for next year.  Breakfasts consisted of: rice, oatmeal, eggs, bacon, and a spread of toasted breads and fixings.  The breakfast rice was a hit, and I've got a recipe posted below.  Lunch was simple, with meat/cheese sandwiches for the ride and pretty much whatever we could get our hands on after we returned.  Dinner was substantial: a big bowl of salad, roasted brussels sprouts and carrots, regular old pasta with sauce, saffron rice, baked sweet potatoes, and grilled chicken.  We were regulated to 2 beers each, but combined with the hot tub and cookies and ice cream we still managed to get a little loopy.

A couple more notes and some recipes:

  • Just about everything we ate was gluten-free!  The benefits of a gluten-free diet are well documented (anti-inflammatory, easily digestible, more nutrient rich (gluten actually carries anti-nutrients that block uptake), and more...) and many pro team cooks are moving in this direction, notably Garmin-Cervelo
  • Sweet potatoes and rice: not conventional breakfast foods, but they should be. Both are easily digested and elicit a quick insulin response. I've been experimenting with using these before rides, and I've been warming up much faster and feeling much better in the first half of rides

Breakfast rice:

  • Olive oil (or butter)
  • 1 cup uncooked rice (I used cal-rose sushi style, but any will work. Try basmati)
  • 1 c apple juice
  • .5-.75 c water
  • Honey
  • Cinnamon (or clove, nutmeg, other spices)
  • Fruit: raisins, dates, bananas, apples...

Coat the bottom of a pot with olive oil, heat over medium-high. Add rice, toast until it becomes fragrant (nutty). Add apple juice and water, cover, bring to a low boil, reduce heat and simmer. After ~5 minutes, add a bunch of honey and some cinnamon, stir. When the rice is about 75% of the way there and only a little liquid is left, you can (but don't have to) add .25-.5 c milk for a creamier consistency. Continue to simmer until finished; my test is to get a spoonful and turn it sideways to drip back into the pot - when it takes a while to slide off the spoon, it's ready. Add fruit within the last few minutes. The whole process usually takes about 30-40 minutes. I like to make huge batches and store in the fridge for the week.

Breakfast sweet potatoes:

Quick version: Pierce holes in potato with fork, microwave until fully cooked, mash with apple juice/water, molasses, honey, spices, fruit.

Long version: cube potatoes, toss with olive oil/butter/bacon fat and spices, bake at 425 until done, mash (or not) with apple juice/water and fruit.