Wednesday, September 03, 2014

1,500 posts on 'Round the Chuckbox

The 1,500th post on 'Round the Chuckbox nearly slipped away without notice! My picture of the US Foods truck arriving at Oakland Feather River Camp that was posted Monday takes the honor. Though a random picture, it represents my post-retirement career as a summer camp chef.

While I enjoy the long hours and seemingly chaotic atmosphere of the commercial kitchen, laboring in the outdoor camp kitchen has been my true love for decades. I share a common interest in outdoor cooking with the readers of 'Round the Chuckbox. Together we enjoy cooking in cast iron Dutch ovens, grilling over a campfire and smoking in the barbecue.

When I look back at the articles I posted while away from home this summer, those that relate to outdoor cooking were the best performers. Of the 36 pieces between late-April and mid-August, two standout. This means they performed significantly better than the thirty or so articles on cooking in the camp kitchen.

It seems readership declines whenever I shift focus from outdoor cooking to my work as a camp chef. The statistics show more readers would rather read my thoughts on locating the massive Lodge 20-inch skillet last April than to view a picture of my baked apple pancake. These two were the best and worst performing posts of the spring and summer.

The second highest performing blog of the season was a series of images of a Dutch oven cookout last May. And the two Dutch oven recipes that I've posted since returning home (baked orange French toast and layered cabbage and potatoes with bacon) are above the others.

Not everyone goes away when I place emphasis on cooking for large numbers of campers. 'Round the Chuckbox draws readers from those interested in cooking for groups as well as outdoor cooks. But the pool of those interested in outdoor cooking seems to be somewhat larger than the group of quantity cooking enthusiasts.

I plan to continue posting articles on cooking for groups and outdoor cooking. As I see it, both types of cooking fit within my calling as a camp cook. Since many folks enjoy reading Dutch oven articles, the focus for the fall and winter will be towards outdoor cooking. While I may post one or two more articles from Oakland Camp this summer, I'm ready to put the modest cast iron collection to work.


Click here to see what I had to say when I posted my 1,000th blog article. "As long as I'm able to cook and write," I said on February 5, 2010, "I trust that you'll continue to find the blog interesting. Please drop a note. I always enjoy hearing from my viewers."


  1. Steve, I have spent the last six weeks reading ALL your posts and I love them. I like both types of posts and will incorporate many of your recipes with our Troop.
    God Bless - Brother in Christ

    1. Thanks for the vote of confidence, T-in-Texas. I enjoy hearing success stories from the field.