This is a big statement, so what makes for the “best outside kitchen” in an off-road camper trailer? Well firstly, one that has been designed by a woman. Yes guys, we can design great suspension but when it comes to kitchens, work flow and layout, you have to engage the masters of multi-tasking. So at Kimberley we took this seriously and after extensive interviews and trial layouts came up with these requirements, courtesy of the fairer sex.
Requirements for a best outside kitchen:
- Safety first with no gas connections inside or near a “front storage box”. Gas bottles have to be well stored and clear of the cooking space.
- Have a “U shaped” cooking layout that positions you in the centre and the family around the outside of the “U”.
- Have a pull out dining table so that up to 3 kids can sit and eat while you continue cooking and can keep and eye on them. Preferably have this built in as stainless steel so it cant be knocked over and is easy to clean and wipe and slide away.
- Have this dining bench away from the gas cooktop
- Have a large food prep area in stainless steel
- Have the food prep area away from the cooker/ cooktop so the food prep area does not get to the dangeous “warm condition” that promotes bacteria growth
- Have the cooking area away from canvas and the canvas side of the trailer to avoid a buildup of residue on the canvas and for safety. (most Australian canvas is flamable, all Chinese canvas is flamable))
- Have drawers for plates, knives and forks, cups
- Have hot water “on demand” at the sink for easy washing up and cleaning
- Have a filter on at least the cold or drinking water.
- Have the sink on the “end” or “outside” edge of a pull out kitchen so your partner can washup while you are still in the cooking area.
- Have an exceptional LED light at the sink for washing up (and quality control inspection)
- Have a separate “fire pit” or “fire BBQ plate” utensil drawer as these will get dirty and black. This has to be as long as possible.
- Have the fridge on a roller slide that can be locked back into position with one hand or even a bump of the hip.
- Overhead lighting is essential but has to be the non UV LED’s that minimise the number of insects.
- For cooking, there is a need for a high capacity burner for a large frying pan
- There is a need for at least 2 more burners for billy/ pasta boiling
- Some prefer a griller for toast, some prefer a BBQ plate
Kimberley offer a choice of 4 different cooker combinations.
A note on the number of gas bottles and gas lines. The regulations limit the amount of energy on any one gas line. So if you want to operate a high capacity large single burner you will need 2 gas lines and 2 gas bottles! The is safer and gives better management of gas refills.
- Pantry access to be easy and well lit at night.
- Need all the above for a road side stop so that the kitchen can be used within a minute of stopping.
- Wind protection of cooker gas rings is best done with special round wind ring protectors right at the flame point under the pot OR with side protection on a BBQ.
- Ideal to have an overhead “cover” for wind and weather for roadside stop.
- Kitchen must be easily packed away in less than a minute so “camp vermin” do not have access overnight. (apologies to visiting emu’s)
- An easy place to dry at least 2 tea towels and/or kitchen cloths
- An easy place to hang a rubbish bag away from vermin on the ground
- A sealable rubbish container for overnight storage away from vermin
- Place for a fan for those hot nights that cools the cook but not the food.
- Easy draught skirt on backside of camper trailer in event of storage under the kitchen area.
- Easy wind protection from a Quick to erect awning and side wall.
- No “steel”; just stainless steel and powder coated alloy materials that are easy to clean and look good ten years later!
- Add a weber BBQ for the slow cooking roasts or easy BBQ.
- If you want “no LPG” for safety or just cleanliness, Kimberley has a diesel cooker with a glass ceramic cooktop for the outside kitchen.
- And finally, open it up after a dusty trip and find it clean and easy to use straight away inside!