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‘king’ Of The Camp Oven Cooks At Expo

Story: Christine Chamberlain
Jan 23, 2019
Sitting around the campfire, sharing stories and food with family and friends is a favourite pastime for most people.

If you love the taste of food cooked in a camp oven, you won’t want to miss Kingbrown’s cooking demonstrations at this year’s Moreton Bay Expo.

One of Australia’s most experienced camp oven cooks, Ron Wilson, aka ‘Kingbrown’, learned from the best outback cooks when he was young.

These days he travels the country as a camp oven caterer, cooking for hundreds and sharing his extensive knowledge at festivals and shows.

“The camp oven is big part of cooking in Australia’s history. There is just something magical about the little black pot,’’ Kingbrown said.

“I feel very lucky, now, to be able to share my passion and knowledge of the craft, which I have learned and practised for most of my life.’’

At the Expo, he will be demonstrating how a camp oven can be used with heat beads and not just over a campfire.

“A lot of people own a camp oven, but they only get them out when they go camping and by then they are all rusty. I show people how to use it in their backyard all the time,’’ he said.

“You can make the most amazing food in a camp oven — it beats every other way of cooking.’’

Kingbrown’s most famous dishes, cooked in the humble black pot, include damper, bread rolls and lamb shanks and desserts such as apple pie and bread and butter pudding.

Over the years, Kingbrown has collected many vintage camp ovens, some more than 200-years-old. The pride of his collection is a 24-inch oven – one of the largest ever made in the world.

“They inspire me to challenge and express myself. They create precious memories with friends and loved ones.’’

He encourages Expo visitors to come and say hello and to bring along any camp oven cooking problems for him to help solve. He is also happy to pass on oven cleaning and maintenance tips.

Kingbrown will be holding demonstrations three times a day, throughout the expo.