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Current Freeze Dried Meal Favorites

Have a favorite trail recipe or technique you'd like to share? Please do! We also like reviews of various trail food products out there. The Backcountry Food Topix forum is the place to discuss all things related to food and nourishment while in the Sierra wilderness (as well as favorite trail head eateries).

Re: Current Freeze Dried Meal Favorites

Postby longri » Mon Sep 11, 2017 5:34 pm

maverick wrote:
Unfortunately for people who love unadulterated peanut butter Justin's packets include added palm oil.


http://www.artisanaorganics.com/squeeze-packs/ :yummy:


Am I missing something? I didn't see peanut butter listed on their website.

The only place I've found packets of peanut butter that only contained roasted peanuts and salt was in New Zealand. I've got a few of those packets. The packets have good peanut butter but they're too large for one serving. They only make sense if two people are eating it at the same time. More recently I've come across packets of peanut butter that only contain roasted organic peanuts -- no salt. They were in an alternative food store and kind of expensive. Plus I would miss the salt.

My approach is to find small, lightweight containers for the peanut butter. That way I can buy whatever product I like in normal amounts and use as much or as little per serving. Lately I've been using jars that hold about five 2-Tblsp servings. That's about 160g of peanut butter. The jar weighs 11g.



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Re: Current Freeze Dried Meal Favorites

Postby maverick » Mon Sep 11, 2017 6:22 pm

I don't give out specific route information, my belief is that it takes away from the whole adventure spirit of a trip, if you need every inch planned out, you'll have to get that from someone else.

Have a safer backcountry experience by using the HST ReConn Form 2.0, named after Larry Conn, a HST member: http://reconn.org
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Re: Current Freeze Dried Meal Favorites

Postby longri » Mon Sep 11, 2017 6:40 pm

maverick wrote:https://www.luckyvitamin.com/p-1326362-once-again-organic-peanut-butter-creamy-10-pack-s?site=google_base&LanguageCode=EN&locale=en-US&utm_source=google&utm_medium=PLA&scid=scplp159196&sc_intid=159196&utmp_campaign=SC_Shopping_Campaign_Mid_Margin&branded=no&gclid=Cj0KCQjw6NjNBRDKARIsAFn3NMqbadKLjr3sHkZQ-O6dekRuQM-T3M2XSsEiLR3fiIOlWzH0vXJXik8aAkGSEALw_wcB&gclsrc=aw.ds


No salt. So I'd have to salt them. That's a deal killer.

Also I prefer crunchy, if possible. :-)
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Re: Current Freeze Dried Meal Favorites

Postby longri » Mon Sep 18, 2017 3:30 pm

I thought I had one single freeze-dried meal that I liked, the Mountain House Beef Lasagna. I ate one last year, liked it, bought another and liked that too. Both were eaten on trips in the Sierra.

This year I bought another and had it in my pack on a recent trip but ended up bringing it home as extra food. I had repackaged it into a ziplock and figured its shelf life would be reduced enough that I should eat it soon. So I made it for lunch last weekend, at home. And it made me ill.

It was so salty. I drank close to two quarts of water but simply couldn't drink enough to quench my thirst. And my gut felt like there was something in it that should come back out. I was kind of paralyzed with a sick-to-my-stomach feeling for almost three hours.

No more Mountain House for me!
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Re: Current Freeze Dried Meal Favorites

Postby mrphil » Tue Sep 19, 2017 6:18 pm

longri wrote:And my gut felt like there was something in it that should come back out. I was kind of paralyzed with a sick-to-my-stomach feeling for almost three hours.


That's weird. It's such a basic entree. Did you leave the desiccant packet in what was leftover? It sounds like the powdered cheese took on some moisture and curdled. That's sure to make your gut churn. If it was the meat, it would've probably been more like a couple days of full-on food poisoning symptoms than just three hours of wanting to vomit. I totally feel for you. What a horrible sensation. I can take that for about half an hour, tops, before my finger goes down my throat.
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Re: Current Freeze Dried Meal Favorites

Postby longri » Wed Sep 20, 2017 7:20 am

mrphil wrote:
longri wrote:And my gut felt like there was something in it that should come back out. I was kind of paralyzed with a sick-to-my-stomach feeling for almost three hours.


That's weird. It's such a basic entree. Did you leave the desiccant packet in what was leftover? It sounds like the powdered cheese took on some moisture and curdled. That's sure to make your gut churn.


No, the desiccant packet had been removed a couple of weeks previously. The food was not rancid or spoiled with bacteria. It was just a bad meal. If I'd been in my tent and laying down after eating it at the end of a long day it probably wouldn't have felt so bad, although I'd still have had to drink a lot of water. I've eaten it and actually enjoyed it before. But this time I was at home, with plans to run some errands and then ride my bicycle. The food just sat in my stomach like a lump leaving me couch-bound for the duration of digestion.

I usually try my backcountry meals at home, at least once, as a kind of test. Some are very good, some are not all that exciting in that environment, and some are downright disappointing. But I think this is the first time I've felt like this.

I think it was mainly the salt content but perhaps something else as well. Maybe the acidity of the tomato sauce got me for some reason. I don't know. Or maybe those little dogfood-like beef pellets weren't fully hydrated. Even when I enjoyed the meal in the past I've wished that they had left that kibble out of the package.
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Re: Current Freeze Dried Meal Favorites

Postby mrphil » Wed Sep 20, 2017 9:19 am

longri wrote:Or maybe those little dogfood-like beef pellets weren't fully hydrated. Even when I enjoyed the meal in the past I've wished that they had left that kibble out of the package.


And then there's the MH chicken breasts and mashed potatoes, which is expensive, but actually not too bad or salty. You look at the chicken and know you're going to end up eating it, but there's always that temptation to see how many times you can make it skip across the pond. With the little grill marks, if you were a geologist and saw it sitting in the dirt, you might get kind of excited at first.
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Re: Current Freeze Dried Meal Favorites

Postby longri » Wed Sep 20, 2017 10:37 am

mrphil wrote:And then there's the MH chicken breasts and mashed potatoes, which is expensive, but actually not too bad or salty.


According to the Mountain House website the Chicken Breasts and Mashed Potatoes has more than twice as much salt as the Lasagna with Meat Sauce. So obviously perception of saltiness varies.

I'm not sure what it is exactly. I eat Annie's Macaroni and Cheese quite a bit on trips and at home too and it's got plenty of sodium in it. At home I even like to add a salty curry paste to it. I eat lots of salt. Staple items for me in the backcountry include salted oil-popped popcorn, miso soup, salted nuts, pretzels, and salami. I tolerate all of that salt just fine. But when it comes to these freeze-dried meals or things like the Knorr rice or pasta meals, they just taste off the chart salty and I can't take it.

It would be interesting to hear a food scientist speculate on why I perceive such a difference in saltiness among these various salty foods. I know I'm not the only one who feels this way.

Anyway, no more Mountain House for me! :-)
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Re: Current Freeze Dried Meal Favorites

Postby tweederjohnson » Sun Sep 24, 2017 10:21 am

More on the dehydrated side than actually freeze-dried, I thoroughly enjoyed my Poblano Corn Chowder, Tortilla Soup, and a Peach-Passion Fruit smoothie from Packit Gourmet, and would happily get any one of them again. Their Gumbo looks tasty too. https://www.packitgourmet.com/
Keep in mind it was about $8 for standard shipping.

I also puchased some 'cook-in' bags from them that I was able to split up a double serving of Good-to-Go Indian Vegetable Korma, though that wasn't as good as the Packit Gourmet meals. I've had the Herbed Mushroom Risotto from Good-to-Go also, and that was much better.

I also heard a glowing recommendation from some folks I met on the trail for Outdoor Herbivore (https://outdoorherbivore.com/), which I'll be sure to try next year.
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Re: Current Freeze Dried Meal Favorites

Postby Snowtrout » Mon Sep 25, 2017 9:57 am

My wife and I like the MH chili mac poured over frito chips and topped with some cheese. MH biscuits and gravy is also very good for a breakfast meal.

Good to go's thai curry is good but is very expensive. I actually prefer Knoors thai curry instead. Compared to GTG, its 1/10th the cost, has a slightly smaller portion, to me is a little more spicy and is easier to find at Walmart or other grocery stores. Add some freeze dried chicken or cooked fish and raisins=yummy meal for two.

Actually, a variety of Knoor brand pasta and rice dishes, with add-ins, make up most of my back country dinner diet.
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