Using steel discs to cook isn’t a new innovation. Not at all. A centuries-old method of cooking in Mexico, still used today, is by using “discada,” which is an improvised cooking surface usually repurposed from a farmer’s plow disc.
Similar in use to a wok, the discada was heated over a fire and provided a cooking surface for hungry farmers and ranchers.
iKamper’s modern-day interpretation of the discada is its Disco Series Cook System. The Disco Series offers more functionality than an average camp stove.
We discovered this first-hand when we were sent a unit to test and evaluate, and the truth is that it has quickly become our go-to cooking surface when out in the wilds.
It’s super-adaptable and capable of transforming itself to any situation we find ourselves in. Disco allows us to cook in a variety of ways. We can cook over a wood or coal fire, or powered by gas canisters, while standing up, sitting down, and even on sloped or uneven ground. To put it simply, it’s essentially a wok on a tripod, and as strange as that sounds, it works extraordinarily well.
The modular cooking system is made up of four parts—a skillet, a tripod, the stove, and a side table. Each of the Disco’s thick, heat-resistant anodized aluminum tripod legs can be adjusted to different heights for level use on uneven ground. The tripod is easily and quickly deployed and has the ability to stand between two to four feet high. It comes with a pulley system and chain for over-the-fire cooking. If more heat is required, lower the pulley. If the food is ready, simply pull it up and away from the heat to keep food warm.
Disco’s discada-like skillet is shaped like a shallow wok. It is made of Meehanite cast iron, has two handy grab handles, and measures just under 16 inches in diameter. It has a non-stick enamel coating, so it is easy to clean. Hand-washing with mild dish soap is all you need for clean-up.
When it comes to heat, the Disco can use campfires as well as an included gas stove to cook with. The stove experts at Kovea make the stove, so you can be sure that it performs well. The stove can be powered by either butane or propane canisters and the stove has a built-in igniter for quick starts.
One bone we have to pick with iKamper is that the Disco only comes butane-ready. A separate adaptor needs to be purchased in order to use propane tanks. Being that propane is the most commonly used source of fuel for camp cooking in the USA, we’d think this adaptor would be included with the Disco. This wasn’t the case and we had to order one separately.
Disco also includes a table that sits on the side of the tripod. The handy wood table provides a modestly sized surface to place ingredients or cooking tools on. The table is also equipped with a built-in hanger rail and two cup holders. We found it to be very useful.
The Disco Series has served us well over a number of trips now. We’ve used it with its supplied Kovea stove as well as over wood fires and even a propane-powered fire pit. From Big Bear to Baja, the Disco was adaptable to any situation we found ourselves in. It helped us to cook up everything from breakfast burritos to Korean barbeque. In fact, writing up this article is making us hungry; perhaps it’s time to bust out the Disco for some more cooking!
OVR’s Bottom Line
We found the iKamper’s Disco Series to be lightweight, portable, crazy adaptable and easy to use. We love it, but not including the propane adaptor with it is a pain point for us.
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This article originally appeared in OVR Issue 01. For more informative articles like this, consider subscribing to OVR Magazine in print or digital versions here.