Campfire rotisserie lets us build big caramelised fire roast flavours, while maintaining succulence of roast, easily. Fire pit burning, I unpack the portable spit roast kit from the carry sack; 1 stainless steel 100cm spit, 2 stainless fork sets, powerful battery motor, 2 sturdy support legs.
The FireChef Campfire Rotisserie system is a quick assemble open fire spit roast kit. In 3 minutes we can be roasting food by the fire freeing time about camp. Featuring a new gen -Quiet- 20 hour battery motor, enjoy the ambience of campfire and nature while your food cooks.
Campfire Builds for Rotisserie
A good aim for campfire rotisserie is to maintain a mature cooking fire one third longer than the food on the spit you are cooking to ensure an even cook.
For larger roast cuts aim for indirect cooking to the side of the embers using the campfires radiant heat. Smaller cuts and more delicate produce cook direct over the embers.
Fire safely is always an important consideration for fire location, avoid burning on rich organic ground that can start smouldering. If there is any risk of wind born sparks and nearby vegetation find a safer location. Fire safety first both for yourselves, others and the environment (Open Fire Safety for more information)
The classic campfire build. Place the rocks in a circle, for a a single chicken a 50cm diameter should suffice. Ideally use igneous and none river/sea soaked rocks for fear of exploding when hot with trapped steam. Start the fire + tinder > kindling > sticks > branches > logs, then maintain a mature fire with a good bed of embers. A timeless classical campfire build, the perfect social fire layout providing all round warmth and merriment.
Horseshoe Cook’s Fire
This is a great all round cooking fire if we need to work additional cookware; grills, pots, pans, and campfire rotisseries. Back the fire to the wind, starting with the largest rocks at the back of the fire to act as a wind break and a heat reflector. Then build off two arms down each side of the fire downwind, try to maintain an equal height of rocks either side as this is ideal for grill balancing. Leave the far end open as this is perfect for raking out embers for the dutch ovens or more delicate grill work.
Great for larger spit roasts like multiple bird spit roasts or even the hallowed realm of thegiant shwarma. Build an elongated fire backed by larger rocks, or wood reflector or earth bank providing wind protection and heat reflection, giving us a long fire to maintain an even cook along the spit. The long fire also reduces the amount of wood cutting as we can burn longer longs.
Portable Fire Pits
I tend to use pre-established rock fire pits or bring a portable fire pit into the wilds to minimise environmental impact in sensitive areas. Always leave your campsite better than you found it, the perfect camp out would leave no visible sign of you having being there, a portable fire pit is perfect for reducing impact. Leave only footprints in the sand.
How to set up a Campfire Rotisserie
Set up time: 3 minutes.
Cooking Distance is key, too far and we burn too much wood, too close and we burn the outside.
Consider also wind direction, downwind your food will be more smokey and upwind of the fire less so.
Fire Roast Food Goal? A deep caremalised roast rich exterior, with a beautifully moist interior, evenly cooked through to perfection.
- Rotisserie Position
Taking a family sized Beef Rib Roast as example we want to set the rotisserie so the food is indirect of the embers to the side of the fire as below, the distance determined by FIREMARK 3, a position you can comfortably hold your hand at for 3 seconds.
Position the motor bearing support leg outside of the fire pit and upwind to stop it overheating throughout cooking.Do Not set the Motor in the fire.
- Set Rotisserie Support Legs
Set the rotisserie support legs at least 10cm into the ground (deeper if roasting on a sandy beach),
Tip: use a log to gently tap the legs into firm ground.
Tip: The motor holding support leg should be a couple of cm lower than the other as to encourage the spit bar to naturally rest into motor socket.
- Food Position Check
Rest the empty spit bar through the leg supports and note the ideal location along the spit for your food/s position.
- Load the Rotisserie Spit
Secure the first spit fork at the ideal position. Load your spit by sliding the spit into the center of the produce using the pointed end. Slide the food onto the first set of forks ensuring a good penetration of the forks prongs.
Slide on the second fork into the food. push tight and secure.
Ensure best balance as you can on the food, this will render a more even turn and cooking whilst also optimising battery power. Well balanced, using 2 quality standard D batteries, the motor should turn about 20-30 hours cooking time.
- Add the Loaded Spit
Place the rotisserie motor into the motor support leg by sliding the motor onto the bracket.
Bring the loaded spit to the fire and insert one end of the spit through the non motor support leg. Then bring the other end of the spit trough the eye of the motor support leg and into the square socket in motor.
Turn on using the switch at the back and pour a well deserved drink.
Campfire Rotisserie Cooking
A well set campfire rotisserie is a delight and low maintenance cooking at its best. At FIREMARK 3-4 I am tending the rotisserie every half hour or so, a little baste here a couple more logs there. Keep a healthy ember base on the fire and all is good.
Consider the amount of radiant heat from the fire, perhaps you want to deliver a Perfect Fire Roast Pork Crackling. By building up the fire or allowing it to mellow we can play the roast as we see fit.
Consider a pot under the roast to catch the drippings. Historically these umami tears were collected, the rich flavours dripping from the roast never going to waste.
Re-baste these juices over the roast to create an ever increasing cycle of flavour intensity.
Add oils, butter, seasonings and spices & herbs to your baste pot, returning to paint the roast. Use a basting brush or a home tied herb wand.
Direct over the ember rotisserie can require more frequent baste work but the rewards are always worth it.
The Garlic Spit Roast Chicken Recipe, has the garlic butter under the skin so the birds self baste.
What an exciting realm… and so often in a fantastic place.
*wet rub: toasted & ground, black mustard seed,salt flakes, chopped rosemary & rape seed oil. Roast & cycle basted.
Campfire Rotisserie Cooking Times
As a rule of thumb add an hour to what it would normally take at home in the oven for larger roasts. The weather, ambient temperature and wind strength plays a large part in cooking time, so I recommend using the FIREMARK technique paired with a meat thermometer and cook until done.
One of the many magics of rotisserie is the ability to reduce the drying out of the produce with the rhythmic rotation of oils and juices. So if in any doubt give it a little longer.
When done, turn off motor switch, remove the spit roast. Rest & carve.