"People who know how to do this will laugh at me, but I've never actually seen someone cook over a backcountry wood fire."
The people who truly know how to do this won't be laughing at you, Kerry. Nobody has ever been born with a Tinderkwik in one hand and a striker in the other. We all had to learn by a combination of trial and error, and/or asking those with experience. There is a fair amount of info already posted here on your questions, but I don't think it is organized into one thread. You might try using the BPL search engine and, if you don't find satisfactory answers, just start a thread and you'll get plenty of opinions, answers, recipes, etc. Then you can start experimenting and see what works for you. In time, you'll develop your own set of methods and materials, part you and part what you have learned from others. Everyone does. Have fun and don't ever be afraid to ask a question here. This is a very supportive bunch of folks.