Saturday, February 5, 2022

The saga of B4B's One-Pot Pasta Fagioli (Recipe Included)

Some people camp just to creatively cook, others merely choose to survive on PB & Js for the weekend. I guess you can call me a middleman.  I love the experience of cooking over the campfire (or camp stove), but as soon as the sun starts setting, I realize what a hassle the prep work, serving, and cleanup is probably going to be. I'm a big fan of foil packs... but pizza/beer at the local pub is great camp food too! I do get a laugh (maybe agitated) at many pictures on these so-called camping profiles/accounts on Instagram... not that there's anything wrong with a loving couple in designer clothes lounging comfortably on a colorful Navajo blanket...eating a 5-course meal by the light of a lantern's glow.  I must argue that a real-world scenario is much different, especially for families. 

What you’ll need!

Is there such thing as a relaxing meal when your camping crew numbers four or more? Our one-pot Pasta Fagioli might make that a reality.  The recipe is easy to half/triple by buying the 15oz. can size. Like more garlic?  Go for it! Watching salt intake? Buy low sodium items. Ground turkey and turkey sausage could even be used! Lots of prep options too! 

1.  Make the whole meal at home and just reheat at camp. Dole out the bowls and spoons.  Dig in!

2.  Brown meats and chop/dice veggies at home then throw them in a gallon ziploc with the needed seasonings. Pack up the remaining ingredients (which doesn’t take up precious cooler space)- a pot, a large mixing/serving spoon and a can opener.

  • I often precook my pasta separately in the broth and drain it right into the pot, and then set pasta aside to mix in later as needed. If you don’t eat the whole pot in one sitting, the pasta swells as it sits. Mushy pasta is so gross!

3.  Break out that dutch oven and make it all at camp! This recipe is worth the hour wait!  Ready, set…GO!

  • First, drag in from the day's adventures, unload the car, organize campsite, sit for a minute or twenty to gain a second wind, attempt to get a fire going, corral the kids that took off on their bikes, get kids showered/cleaned/dressed in pajamas, attempt to keep kids out of fire, retrieve dog that kids let loose, run to camp store for more wood, make rude comment to significant other who's still relaxing, yell at kids to stick near campsite, start prep work for dinner, start cooking, yell at kids to get out of the marshmallows because they're starving, go to grab ice out of the cooler because you just burned yourself, go to camp store for more ice, set up picnic table while trying to cook, shut down generator because neighbor just yelled "quiet time" … is it 8:00 pm already? Time to finally eat, in the dark.  Grab the lantern. Now force a smile, say "cheese" for that REAL camper photo and throw it up on Instagram and Facebook!
The overall jest of the recipe; Brown meats, sauté veggies in, add spices, add tomatoes, broth, sauce & pasta when time to. Cook till done. Voilà! Whichever way to choose to prepare this dish, it's a crowd pleaser!

Camper's Favorite One-Pot Pasta Fagioli

In a large pot, brown:

  • 1/2 lb. ground beef
  • 1/2 lb. loose sausage (sweet or hot)
    • Hot gives an extra burst of flavor!

Add and sauté over medium heat for 7-10 minutes:

  • 1 cup diced carrots
  • 1 cup diced celery
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic

Add and cook over med-high 20 minutes or until vegetables are near tender:

  • 1 carton (32oz) chicken or beef broth
  • 1 can (28oz) tomato sauce
  • 1 can (28oz) fire roasted diced tomatoes
  • 1 tsp. heaping of sugar
  • 1 heaping tablespoon Italian seasoning

Add and cook 11 minutes until al dente

  • 1 1/2-2 cups dry ditalini or tubettini pasta

Add and cook over medium 5 minutes more:

  • 1 can (15.5oz) white cannellini beans, NOT drained
  • 1 can (15.5oz) red kidney beans, NOT drained
  • salt and pepper to taste

Before serving (optional):

  • grated fresh Parmesan cheese
  • fresh chopped parsley
  • Slice up a loaf of fresh Italian bread

PRINT RECIPE HERE:  B4B's Camp Cooking Page

More camping recipes like these are on the website on our "Camp Cooking" page


* The above blog post many contain affiliate links which allow B4B to earn from qualifying purchases. *

Thursday, October 21, 2021


Believe it or not, It took me about 10 years to finalize the very simple Bound4Burlingame(B4B) logo! For years I sketched, scribbled, and copy/pasted, often spending days on end experimenting with fonts, colors, shapes and graphics. In the end, I reverted to the simplest of logos. Despite the fact that many campers outside New England probably don't realize that Burlingame is a camping destination near the beaches of Rhode Island, it was still pretty important that my logo portrayed B4B's underlying identity and stood apart from RI DEM and/or the RI State Park Department logos.

When it all finally fell into place, it was like an "Oprah Ahh-ha Moment". I can't believe I wasted so much time and effort when the answer was passing me by on every road trip I took. What would be more obvious for a brand/social network logo, then one that closely resembled what most people already recognized as the universal symbol for campground? And so I ran with it. Okay...skipped.  That was right after I jumped for joy. Took long enough! I patted myself on the back and called it a decade. I wanted the B4B social pages to expand beyond the Burlingame camping population, to include all outdoor enthusiasts, so originally, I expanded the logo as well. I stuck with the simplicity and immediately settled on a "ROY G BIV" scheme. If you didn't attention in art class, its the color of the rainbow...Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo, Violet.  If its good enough for Mother Nature and the Olympic Rings, it's good enough for me!  I fell in love with these crisp, vibrant and bold colors as a kid, and never outgrew them. (Kind of like my love for camping). I've since realized that a solo circle makes the biggest impact, but you'll occasionally still see colorful icons on our pages.




It's doubtful B4B will ever be a known brand like Nike or Pepsi, so I have freedom to change it up a bit.  However, I found the key is to stick with easily recognizable icons across social media, the internet and advertising. Some early B4B devotees may remember when our tent was square, and our identity was a bit more complex. One of our early t-shirts featured an "eat-sleep-camp" design... a popular slogan which will return soon, I promise. Sometimes I do a little logo tweaking on our Pinterest, Facebook, Amazon storefront, and Twitter posts/accounts, so it grabs the attention of the followers and alerts them to a great gift idea, a neat DIY idea, or a product that B4B loves! All B4B YouTube videos are copyrighted with our logo too.

I love our B4B #redtentdistrict logo! (even if the tent is actually white and the circle red). As we grow and more campers join our B4B community, I wanted everyone to know what the B4B logo stands for and why it's the color/shape it is.

  **THE COLOR RED** Red is a strong, stimulating color that represents protection, excitement and energy. This color can create physical effects such as enhanced metabolism, increased enthusiasm, high levels of energy, and increased confidence. Red is assertive, daring, determined, powerful, enthusiastic, impulsive, exciting, and aggressive. Red represents physical energy, lust, passion, and desire. It symbolizes action, confidence, and courage. The color red is linked to the most primitive physical and emotional expressions needed for both survival and self-preservation. In feng shui, red is the most powerful color and supersedes all else. Pretty much sums up the soul of a camper!

**THE COLOR WHITE**  White creates a sense of space and is an inherently positive color. White is often associated with mental clarity, purity, innocence, light, goodness, calm, safety, brilliance, illumination, understanding, cleanliness, faith, beginnings, spirituality, possibility, humility, sincerity, protection, softness, and perfection. White refreshes one's soul. White is the feeling of camping.

**THE CIRCLE**  Roundness implies an idea of movement, travel, and symbolizes the cycle of time, the perpetual motion of everything that moves, the planets' journey around the sun, the circle of the zodiac, and the great rhythm of the universe. It symbolizes potential, or the embryo. It possesses a protective agent and indicates striving towards a psychic wholeness, self-realization and completeness.  For B4B, it also represents a campfire ring (our place of solace) and togetherness.  The joined circle is our camping community, a roundabout of friends bonded by the spirit of camping.

Did you know that we have group decals available at a minimal cost? Our B4B decals are 3" x 3" matte UV resistant vinyl. Waterproof & tearproof for outdoor/indoor use and will adhere to most surfaces. Peel and stick application. We have garden flags too! When new B4B swag becomes available, we announce it in the Private Facebook Group.

You'll notice that I've incorporated the B4B logo on our Facebook, the Private Facebook Group, Pinterest, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, TikTok and Blogger. I like to find clever ways to include it in posts and the graphics I create for our social media pages. This is for your entertainment (but mostly mine), but also a way to deter others from copying our content. Its FREE to belong to our community of campers. I just ask that you find, follow, like, comment, participate in, and share our Bound4Burlingame pages. Make sure your friends/family arrive at the correct pages/places by using the invite/share buttons and by mentioning our #redtentlogo and B4B directly. All links can can be found on the website.

DID YOU KNOW? Many people have trouble remembering BOUND "4", so B4B owns all of the following domains and you they will redirect you to the right place!
Please take a couple minutes and visit the "About Me, About B4B and our non-affiliation disclosure statement on the website page: If we haven't met in person yet, it will give you a little insight into who I am and how/why Bound4Burlingame was created.  And read through one of my very early blog post here of how it started: 

See you round the campfire!


Sunday, November 1, 2020


Nothing puts a damper on a camping trip faster than misbehaving neighbors. You've planned for months and just as you sit down to enjoy your dinner, campfire, or sleepy time... someone (or something) decides to tempt fate and aggravate your very last nerve! Your own flesh and blood should get the message with a cold stare and a flash of a parental hand gesture.  However, a complete stranger who may/may not have overindulged in adult beverages or believes they hold rights over the entire campground, is an entirely different story. There is nothing worse than paying good money only to endure bad manners by fellow campers. Well, maybe getting attacked and eaten by a bear...but there's a fine line there! A reminder to all camping on those holiday weekends.... YOU put yourself the war zone. Sending prayers.... and tolerance.

So, let's take a refresher course on how to act when camping at your chosen campground:

  • Minimize generator noise.  First of all, there is no such thing as a super quiet generator when the next campsite is 10ft. away... even if you paid $3,000 for it.  We do want to say thank you for actually obeying the official quiet time rule. Unfortunately, I'm aggravated by my neighbor on the other side who runs their generator from 7am until 10pm every day. Certainly they don't hear it because they are inside the RV with the stereo/tv on. Meanwhile, I'm contemplating forcibly planting a tent stake in their behind. Maybe I'll heat it in the campfire first too. So, if you have to ask yourself "I wonder if I should shut off my generator for a while?" Yes... and thank you. FYI- If you are a newbie RVer, "primitive" campgrounds will be 90% tenters who frown upon generators. Research campsite locations and distancing so everyone enjoys their stay. 
  • Set up camp quietly.  Many people work Monday through Friday nine to five. Add an hour or two drive time and there's a pretty good chance that it may be dark when you arrive at camp. Have a plan in place on everyone's responsibilities. No one should be relaxing and watching while others work.  Small jobs like collecting twigs to start the fire keep youngsters engaged and out from under foot. Insults and name calling seem to escalate pretty quickly during campsite setups, and trust me...your voice is traveling far and wide. Thus leading to the next suggestion. (And maybe you should apologize to the neighbors in the morning.)
  • Watch the language. Just when I think I've heard everything, people manage to create a new slang, swear, or suggestive term that baffles my mind. If you spew garbage, keep your tone down, especially in front of children. Or visit adult only establishments. You are going to rub someone the wrong way with your graphic language. Be warned... if you get knocked upside the head with a bar of soap flying through your campsite, chances are someone is on their way over to cram it down your throat and wash your mouth out. And by the way, soap is a laxative. Shines new light on the term "shitty neighbor", doesn't it?
  • Respect space. Campsites come in all shapes/sizes, but maybe you made a wrong choice in picking your site. This doesn't mean you can infringe on another camper's paid space. Know the boundaries between campsites and stick to yours.  Do not allow campers or pets from your site to play, walk through...or relieve themselves on neighboring sites. Also, I know its a public bathroom, but if you can help it, please don't stand directly outside the bathroom stall door when I'm trying to go #2.  Come back in five minutes please. Don't you think I'm stressed out enough in there having to poop in a public place? 
  • Turn down the speakers. Not everyone enjoys the same music genre as you. Especially if the lyrics are 75% profanity. Just because you and I are both wearing flannel, doesn't mean I'm into country music. Your disco tunes are giving me a Saturday night fever.  That feverish pitch resonating from your favorite operatic performer is attracting every coyote and bigfoot within a 25 mile radius. So, I'll tell you what I want...what I really really want... and that is for you to invest in some ear buds.  Campgrounds are not concert venues and very very few campers are impressed with the size of your woofers and tweeters.

  • Clean up after yourself (and your kids/pets). Don't leave trash in campfire pits or scattered on campsite.  Don't leave your toilet paper and poo piles (human or pet) where others will be camping. Soap wrappers, shampoo containers and even "un"sanitary products get left behind in campground showers. Sinks/showers often look like someone lost an entire head of hair in them.  It takes minimal effort to clean up after yourself and take trash to the dumpster. Please check bathroom stalls your child has used.  If they have unrolled the toilet paper and scattered it, pick it up! Flush the toilet if they forgot! Smokers, dispose of your butts somewhere else besides all over the ground. Pet owners should pick up and discard their pet's waste properly.  Yes, the elements and insects will eventually break it down, but not overnight....and probably not in a week since you brought your two Saint Bernard dogs. Now I gotta move my tent :-(
  • Follow the basic rules. Campgrounds put rules in place to protect themselves, and to safeguard the campground visitors. Washing dishes at public spigots leave behind food remnants which attract wildlife. Wildlife may carry rabies. Capeesh?  Common sense would tell you not to drain black water tanks on a campsite, but it happens...a lot. Invasive insects can be carried from state to state on firewood, so buy local. Register all campers/visitors. In an emergency situation, management needs to have everyone accounted for. Respect the property you are on.  Speak up to management if something alarms you. Most campers are seeking relaxation, so abide the quiet times rule. Know where your kids are. Don't allow dogs to bark excessively. Leashes are a must. 
  • Porta-jons/spring loaded bathroom doors.  And for god's sake people...STOP allowing the door to slam shut behind you in the wee hours of the morning when you do a bathroom trip! I personally thank you for this courtesy!

The price of campsites is out of control, even at state campgrounds that used to make for an affordable vacation. In state cost for residents are still manageable, but nonresident rates are double/triple than those of residents.  When you are paying good money for relaxation, your expectations also run high. Don't be part of the problem.  Set a good example for the future generation of campers who learn by listening, watching and replicating.  Oh no, wait!.... are we raising a bunch of pyromaniacs? Nah, campfires don't count! 

Just a reminder, please consider supporting B4B by following/liking our accounts across social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Twitter, Pinterest, Reddit, Amazon Storefront and YouTube. All links are on the website or my using our safe link page. Always look for our red tent logo to ensure you are on a B4B page. Thank you! #happycamping