We like to camp, and recently headed down to San Onofre for an easy weekend of surfing, tent sleeping, and hanging with friends.
There are some hard things about camping:
1) Getting a site. These suckers in California get booked fast, so you're limited on the spontaneity. And on a side note, there are 70+ CA state parks set for closure in 2012, so I can only imagine what a hot commodity some of these sites will be next year.
2) The cleanup. You know when you get home and everything is covered in dirt, stale campfire smell and seawater? There is no washer big enough....
3) Cooking. Oh wait...this is the easy part! Well maybe not as easy as sitting on the beach, but with a little prep, it can come close. And you don't have to be tied to hot dogs, and with some tools you can throw out those sticks (unless you're saving them for s'mores)
Marinate some chicken (I used bone in thighs) in olive oil, garlic, rosemary (or any herbs) , salt & pepper and place it in a large ziplock plastic bag. Place the bag in the freezer overnight, and pack in the bottom of your cooler the next day. It will act as an icepack, and be thaw by the time you need it.
Chop some veggies (I used bell peppers, zucchini, yellow squash and cherry tomatoes), place them in a big plastic bag with a little salt & pepper.
When you get your fire going, place the chicken in a flat grill basket - these are also good for grilling fish and shrimp - and put the veggies in another. Have a beer and flip/toss as needed!