Camping Candles: In the Wild
Updated: Aug 29, 2019
Camping! It can mean so many things to so many different people. But whether you've spent some time in a yurt, braved the wilderness in a tent, slept like a baby in a glamorous cabin or a rolled around in a cramped Airstream, you've probably come to value the belongings you've brought. You've maybe even found existential respect in a simple sharpened knife or learned to value the hell out of a well made cooking pot.
Next trip, ditch the disposables.. or just refrain from buying them in the first place. There's nothing more ironic than heading to the raw wilderness with packs full of plastic... for the love of nature get some non-styrofoam, non-plastic heirlooms that you can take with you wherever. And bonus, they'll also prepare you for any half-poc or post-poc storyline you may encounter.
Enter the glorious understated elegance of Steel Enamelware. You've probably grown up around this stuff and maybe never given it a second thought. Think of that black speckled roaster mom stuffed Easter ham into or the vintage farmhouse bread box that hid all of the ugly wonder bread loaves. Enamelware is not technically new, but it sure is gaining a foothold again and with global warming, the landfill crisis and BPAs leaching into our food from plastic... plus there's a healthy dose of hipster old-worldiness to fuel this trendy fire.
Here's the deal.. each piece is made from hardened steel pressed, welded and polished into it's shape. It's then dipped into porcelain enamel and baked at a 1700°F until its super durable and hard. this means that like any awesome, super expensive Le Creusset dutch oven, you can bake, boil, cook and fry in it and the metal is good and protected from moisture and rust. The durability and reusable nature is why we chose these as vessels for one of our newer lines... Campfire Candles... We wanted to offer you something that you can use again, like really use everyday. If you're like me you savor your coffee for way too long, ultimately it gets super cold, and after we learned our old microwave was flaking its painted interior into our food, we refused to buy another one. We like these steel mugs because you can throw it on your gas stove top (on low) and it's quickly reheated. A disclaimer: I've burnt my hands and tongue many a time doing this, but it's oh so worth it. Just use a pot holder and test the lip of the cup before drinking.
In the wild, where these mugs truly belong, they thrive. Campside they double as a cooking vessel, self-warming beverage cups and finger-food snack holders. Since they're made of durable steel they can be placed into embers or set on rocks near the fire to heat food and drink. It's brilliant really, just remember that they're super hot and bring an Ove' Glove if you've got one.
Next trip, we're packing some Ethiopian Adado Yirgacheffe from Rising Star Coffee Roasters, our trusty Ceramic Drip Filters and enough Enamelware Camping Mugs to supply friends with some fireside coffee.
To Transform your Candle Cup into a Camp Mug
Step 1) Enjoy the hell out of your Candle. See our other post here for more tips on getting the most life out of your wooden wick candles.
Step 2) Clean out your mug. We'd recommend setting the mug in a bigger bowl full of hot water, being careful not to get water into the mug or wax from the mug into your bowl & sink. Let the wax inside the mug soften up and wipe it out with paper towels. Dispose of all wax in the garbage, don't allow any to enter into your drain, this could cause a real problem down the road. After thouroughly wiping out all excess wax you can now wash out your mug with soapy water. Your done! Now you can enjoy many years to come with your new friend.
-Do not microwave your new friend. She's made from steel.
-Don't leave submerged in water.
-Avoid Abrasive cleansers/sponges and sharpened steel utensils that can scratch your enamel surface
-Enamelware will chip if dropped or handled too roughly, chipping won't affect the functionality, just the appearance. These cups are lead-free so there isn't any risk of lead or other toxins leeching into your food. If you experience a chip, always dry properly to avoid rust spots. On small rust spots make a paste with 1/2 spoon of baking soda and lemon juice and apply to the area for about a minute, rinse with water and dry thoroughly.