The RV Chronicles — Taking out the trash and taking in stories

I walk almost daily with a bag or two of garbage to our RV park dumpster. Most might think of such a task as routine and downright dull. But I see it differently. During my 200 yard roundtrip, I see people’s stories.

Some homes are used as they were intended — as temporary dwellings. I can tell because they sit empty with covered wheels and closed shades. Others have an aura of permanency about them.

While I get by with a $7 charcoal dome grill, I’ve seen a couple of $800 ceramic versions and a custom-made pit or two. Several lots are outfitted with wooden decks, outdoor rugs and furniture sets. Some residents have erected expensive large canopies with insect screens, while others have outdoor televisions mounted beneath the weather-resistant hinged doors of their trailers. There are at least a dozen container gardens gracing the thin fiberglass and aluminum exterior walls of the homes here. And I have so far counted three chain link dog runs, including one almost as large as the RV that sits next to it.

As I meander in my flip-flops toward the large trash bin, I casually imagine the stories behind the mother who is talking on the telephone while her toddlers splash around in an inflatable pool. Is her husband working on a nearby offshore drilling rig? Is he speaking to her on a ship-to-shore phone? I spot a young couple step from their trailer and lift the lid on their tiny grill. Is this their first home? There is also the camper with the mega insurance company car parked in front. Is he an adjuster just here in case a storm blows in from the Gulf of Mexico? It is hurricane season, after all.

The little wheeled homes that I walk past feature names like Cardinal, Eagle and Jay Flight, including the Jimmy Rockford himself. Others carry geographical titles like Colorado, Outback and Columbus. Then there are the Rally Sport and Impala. All are appropriately emblazoned with loud graphics and logos. The weathered Impala even features a retro Chevrolet wide ‘V’ logo painted to look like chrome.

I’m not sure that there’s much in a name when it comes to describing the people who live in these RVs. But I do know that it’s wise to take in the imaginary stories as opportunities present themselves.

One day about a week ago I left the RV park at the crack of dawn behind lights of a large trailer being pulled toward the main highway. During my daily trash run later that day, I noticed three newly vacant lots. According to my neighbor they had ‘moved with the jobs’ to live happily ever after.

For a while anyway.

——

Who’s ever heard of baking a galette on a camping trip? Truth is, since galette is a French term used to describe a pastry that looks about like my Christmas wrapping, almost every pie or cake cooked at a campsite fits this bill.

Local summer squash is almost done for this year, so I decided it might be a good idea to celebrate the coming end of summer with a rustic savory gallete. While this is damn good on its own, It would also be phenomenal with a healthy drizzle of marinara. Consider Cheesy Summer Squash Galette a side if you will, but it’s rich enough to be served as a main.

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Cheesy Summer Squash Galette (in a Dutch oven)

Cheesy Summer Squash Galette — There's plenty of summer in that there pastry.

Cheesy Summer Squash Galette — There’s plenty of summer in that there pastry.

Cheesy Summer Squash Galette (in a Dutch oven)
 
Cheesy Summer Squash Galette — There's plenty of summer in that there pastry.
You can make this recipe in a deep 10-12 inch cast iron skillet in a 350°F oven. Just bake it uncovered and know that the baking time might be slightly less.
Author:
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: American/French
Ingredients
  • 4 cups – Summer squash, sliced thinly
  • 3 cups – Mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • ½ cup – Onions or scallions, diced
  • ½ cup – Mushrooms, sliced
  • ½ cup – Gruyere cheese, shredded
  • ½ cup – Mayonnaise
  • 1 TB – Black pepper
  • 1 TB – Kosher salt, plus more to taste
  • 2 tsp – Dried basil
  • 2 – 8 oz. pkgs Crescent roll dough
Instructions
  1. Combine squash, onions, mushrooms, salt and pepper and steam for 10 minutes covered over medium heat, or for about 6 minutes in the microwave. (The object is to cook the vegetables until they are crisp tender.)
  2. Place in a colander and allow to drain and cool.
  3. Meanwhile, mix cheeses, mayonnaise and basil in a large bowl. Set aside.
  4. In a 10-inch Dutch oven (the cast iron camping type). Lay the crescent roll dough out side-by-side and press to close the perforated edges. The dough will come about halfway up the sides of the Dutch oven.
  5. When vegetables are cool, or at least close to room temperature (about 10 minutes in the colander), combine with cheese mixture.
  6. Pour filling into the dough and pull extended dough over the top of the filling around the edges. (It won't cover the filling entirely.)
  7. Cover and bake at 350°F (14 pieces of charcoal on the top – 7 on bottom) until dough is golden brown and cheese is bubbling, about 20 minutes.
  8. Allow to cool about 10 minutes before serving.

 

Comments

  1. I love that this is made with crescent roll dough! I must share on my community page – they will love it!

    • adamjholland says:

      Thanks, Kelli. You know that I’m pretty much a homemade type of cook, but my pantry is about the size of the average glove compartment, and my fridge belongs under a desk somewhere holding a 12-pack of soda.

  2. Kris Swank says:

    This looks so good! Been looking for some new ideas for outdoor cooking and this fits the bill brilliantly! Keep the good ideas coming…good luck in the Houston area!!!

  3. Oh My. I dare say this would blow the lid off any grill at the trailer park. I love hearing people’s stories and most have at least one. I think a book is in order, along with a potluck!

  4. Really nice post Adam. And fabulous photo. When we’re on vacation, I find myself wondering about other people and what has brought them to that particular destination.

Trackbacks

  1. […] talked here before about my neighbors. In this park of 50 or so RV lots, there are at least three languages spoken; vehicles (mostly […]

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