When cooking in the outdoors a wind shield can be an invaluable trick to help you get even cooking. This is true whether you are cooking using a dutch oven or cooking over a propane based grill.
What is a Wind Shield
The concept of a wind shield is pretty straight forward. Basically setup an apparatus next to where you are cooking to shield your heat source from the effects of the wind.
In the above picture, large rocks have been stacked together to be used as a shield for the coals that are cooking the dutch oven.
Material for a Wind Shield
Large rocks make great wind shields. You can use them by find ricks that have a flat top and bottom surface. Stack them together to prevent the wind from blowing on your coals. If the sides of the rocks are uneven you may want to stager them in a 2 layer system to help prevent wind getting through the uneven gaps between the rocks.
While wood can be used a wind shield, do so with caution. You do not want to accidentally start your shield wall on fire and end up with a fire that you cannot control. For this reason wood based shields are generally not advised.
Table top Wind Shields
If you are using a propane based stove and cooking on a table you can still setup a cooking shield. A lot of camping stoves come with a metal shield that can be setup behind and on the sides of the stove. To utilize this wind protection but the back of the stove against the direction that the wind is blowing. That way the wind will blow onto the back of the stove and not on the front where the heat source is.
If your propane stove does not come with a wind shield, you cans till build one manually. Propane stove fires are generally under a little more control then a coal or wood fire – but this does not mean that you can be careless with creating a wind shield. Be cautious about sticking boxes or packages that can easily catch fire too close to your propane stove. As always, err on the cautious side and never underestimate the power of a small cooking fire.