Re: Help needed on 1st Class Cooking Requirements Guidelines
Bruce E. Cobern (bec@PIPELINE.COM)
Sat, 16 Mar 1996 19:58:26 -0500
On Mar 15, 1996 10:49:17, '"(Jim Payne)" <Jrjpayne@AOL.COM>' wrote:
>During a recent campout, several of the patrol cooks wanted to be signed
>for their 1st class cooking requirement and prepared the appropriate
>of meals toward that requirement. Two of the scout cooks used a lot of
>canned foods ( canned chili, canned beef stew, canned soup, canned
>vegetables, etc.) in preparing their meals and a many of the scouts and
>scouters felt that they should not get credit for these meals toward 1st
>class. The patrol cooks were given limited instructions prior to the
>but use of precooked canned foods was not mentioned. The troop now
>that we need written guidelines and I have been asked to come up with
>suggestions. The Boy Scout Handbook covers the subject in chapter 5 and
>terms like frying, boiling, grilling, etc rather than "heating up a can
>stew". I doubt that we are the first troop to have this problem. Any
Well, I have a couple of comments. First, when the requirements first
changed I spoke to TJ Van Houten who was then the adviser to the
advancement committee. He said that some of the requirements were
specifically left ambiguous to allow the troop to interpret it within the
context of what is acceptable for its program. It was intended that this
requirement be met by preparing a day's worth of meals acceptable to the
troop for one of its overnight camping trips. Since this would differ from
troop to troop the requirement was intentionally left vague.
Our response to this problem was to prepare written guidelines for the
various requirements. The text of our explanation for first class
requirement 4 reads:
- The Scout must prepare a menu and food quantity list, with extras (soap,
paper towels, etc.) on the back. The menu must be balanced, contain
appropriate quantities, and avoid junk food.
- At least the breakfast and dinner meals must require cooking.
- The menu and food quantity list must be approved by the examiner in
advance of the trip to assure compliance with the requirement.
- The cost per Scout must be calculated and the register receipts are to
be attached. All paperwork must be delivered to the examiner.
- The Scout must be actively involved in the fire building, meal
preparation, and cleanup of all the meals, but he is not expected to do all
the work himself.
Just a few comments on the above that might explain some of those items.
The troop has a number of forms we call the "camping trip paperwork" which
each patrol leader must complete before each camping trip. Included in
this is a menu/shopping list form. Before each trip the paperwork must be
submitted for approval to make sure that the menu is adequate. Thus, when
a Scout intends to work on this requirement it becomes his responsibility
to fill out the paperwork and get it approved. We also ask the patrol
leaders to submit the cash register receipts after the weekend. This is
because years ago there were a couple of instances where the PL did not
spend all of the money collected and "pocketed" the excess. I don't
believe we do any significant "audit" of the register tapes, but the
possibility tends to keep them honest. :-) (If there is an excess the
patrol can decide not to refund it, but to use it to buy something the
patrol decides it would like to have, like a lantern.)
As to the "examiner," we have a list of Scouts in the troop who have been
authorized to sign off each of the requirements, sort of like mb
counselors. To become an "examiner" for a requirement the Scout must
demonstrate not only knowledge of the subject, but the ability to teach it.
We do not require the lunch to be cooked because we usually leave on
Saturday morning, bring a bag lunch, and prepare only dinner, breakfast and
Sunday lunch. Often a complex cooked lunch would delay our departure, so
we allow a cold lunch in those cases where time might be a problem.
Finally, we feel that there needs to be a significant amount of "cooking"
involved in the meals. We don't ban canned goods, but would probably have
a problem with the main course coming out of a can. For example, if the
patrol wants cocoa for breakfast, we ask for more than just boiling water
and handing out packets. We ask the "chef" to actually prepare the cocoa
If you have any questions, just ask.
Bruce E. Cobern
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City