SPAM canned meat
SPAM is something so loved that unwanted email was named after it. Or is it so misunderstood that unwanted email was named after it? Monty Python clearly loved it. Actually, SPAM of the email variety is an acronym for ‘Sales Promotion and Marketing’ but I digress…
Having been sent a great big hamper of SPAM in all sorts of flavours (Bacon, Black Pepper and Garlic flavours to name a few) I thought the best possible way of getting a varying taster base would be to present SPAM cubes as a starter at a dinner party (much to the distaste of Mrs Lovecamping!). Her initial distaste was shared by most people at the party, which was very interesting considering most of them had never tasted SPAM in their adult lives!
The responses to the taste test ranged from “No thank you” to “it’s not as bad as I thought” to “actually, it’s quite yummy.” Tasting meat by itself without any condiments is an acquired taste in any case, so the range of responses was to be expected.
After having eaten SPAM based lunches for the past week, my opinion is that while not as good as ‘fresh’ ham, the long shelf life and convenience of being easily storable/transportable would make SPAM a good addition to your camping larder.
The SPAM hamper included a SPAM history and cookbook, so I’ll share one of the more interesting recipes from the book:
Neapolitan SPAM & Penne
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 cupts chopped tomatoes
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 cup white mushrooms
12 ounces SPAM, cut into narrow sticks
8 ounces penne pasta
1 tablespoon chopped basil (optional if you’re camping!)
Heat the oil in a large saucepan, add the onion and cook for 5 minutes, then add the garlic and cook for a further 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes and stir in the tomato paste and mushrooms. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring once or twice, then add the SPAM, basil, and salt and pepper to taste. Cook gently for 5-6 minutes.
Meanwhile cook the penne in boiling salted water until tender. Strain, and place in a hot dish. Top with the SPAM mixture, then the basil if using.