do you dehydrate your own trail meals? | High Sierra Topix  

do you dehydrate your own trail meals?

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).
User avatar

Re: do you dehydrate your own trail meals?

Postby gary c. » Tue May 03, 2016 12:13 pm

Happy to hear you are enjoying the recipe. I add different things to it every batch also depending on what's around the kitchen. Your pictures are not showing up on my screan. All that I see is a black X and the word image.
"On this proud and beautiful mountain we have lived hours of fraternal, warm and exalting nobility. Here for a few days we have ceased to be slaves and have really been men. It is hard to return to servitude."
-- Lionel Terray



User avatar
gary c.
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 998
Joined: Tue Jan 24, 2006 4:56 pm
Location: Lancaster, CA
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: do you dehydrate your own trail meals?

Postby fishmonger » Tue May 03, 2016 6:00 pm

argh - looks like the darn antivirus overrides the web server firewall again blocking the web server. There are supposed to be images in the last post. Will fix that tomorrow.
User avatar
fishmonger
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 945
Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2008 10:27 am
Location: Madison, WI
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

User avatar

Re: do you dehydrate your own trail meals?

Postby gary c. » Wed May 04, 2016 11:14 am

I can see the pictures fine now. Looks like a good batch of pork. I break my beans up a little also to help with rehydration. You might want to be careful about over drying though. I left the house one day and let a batch dehydrate longer than usual and the pork lost all of it's texture. It almost turned to dust when I broke it up. I was never sure just what caused it because it might have been a result of cooking also. The long dehydration time was the only thing that had really been done differently though.
"On this proud and beautiful mountain we have lived hours of fraternal, warm and exalting nobility. Here for a few days we have ceased to be slaves and have really been men. It is hard to return to servitude."
-- Lionel Terray
User avatar
gary c.
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 998
Joined: Tue Jan 24, 2006 4:56 pm
Location: Lancaster, CA
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: do you dehydrate your own trail meals?

Postby JWreno » Fri May 06, 2016 2:17 pm

We started drying our own trail food back in about 2005. If I want to eat rehydrated meals I typically make dried chicken using 1 pound cans of chicken white meat in broth and flaking it out very thing before drying. I also cook lean ground beef, rinse off fat and at back some beef base for seasoning and salt. Using the dried chicken or burger we can add it to all sorts of soup mixes adding dried vegetables and thin pastas or home cooked brown rice that we dry. We also dry spaghetti sauce and add the dried burger and pasta.

We haven't had a hot backcountry meal in about 9 years. We have been making our own jerky and dried fruit. We eat a lot of nuts, bars and other snacks. I find my wife does much better snacking continuously than waiting until a stop for a meal. I can go either meals or trail eating. I have down 3 full JMT trips without hot meals except for the grills at TM and Reds Meadows. We tend to hike from about 6:15AM and go for about 12 hours without any stops for cooked meals.

My family ate store bought dehydrated meals for about 10 years and got completely sick of eating them. If I wanted a hot back country meal now and was planning on carrying a stove, I would start in the soup mix section of the grocery store and add our own dried meats and vegetables.
User avatar
JWreno
Topix Regular
 
Posts: 171
Joined: Thu Feb 04, 2010 9:55 am
Location: Reno
Experience: Level 3 Backpacker

User avatar

Re: do you dehydrate your own trail meals?

Postby longri » Fri May 06, 2016 6:59 pm

How about fish? Does anyone have success rehydrating dried fish or seafood?
User avatar
longri
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 505
Joined: Mon Aug 13, 2012 9:13 am
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: do you dehydrate your own trail meals?

Postby freestone » Fri May 06, 2016 8:32 pm

In an early post:
last year I dried my own salmon using an online Salmon jerky recipe that was much better than the commercial variety. When I added it to other dishes, it had the flavor of bacon, I think because the marinate called for liquid smoke flavor.
User avatar
freestone
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 571
Joined: Fri Nov 11, 2005 9:42 pm
Location: Santa Barbara
Experience: Level 1 Hiker

User avatar

Re: do you dehydrate your own trail meals?

Postby freestone » Sat May 07, 2016 6:40 am

I have not tried any other fish as a stand alone item but mixed into a saucy mix, dehydrated as a bark with maybe some traditional asian seasonings then rehydrated with a quality white rice (not minute rice!) could be tasty. Of course, as a fisherman, dehydrating fish would be pointless in the Sierra, with so many creeks and lakes teaming with trout!

I am amazed at how many hikers can go stoveless and exist on power bars, candy and nuts. If I don't have a tasty hot meal for breakfast and dinner containing protein, starch and fiber, my mood darkens quickly. For me, eating well on the trail is up there with staying warm and dry to keep the wilderness experience enjoyable.
User avatar
freestone
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 571
Joined: Fri Nov 11, 2005 9:42 pm
Location: Santa Barbara
Experience: Level 1 Hiker

User avatar

Re: do you dehydrate your own trail meals?

Postby longri » Sat May 07, 2016 9:53 am

I wasn't really looking for a fish jerky recipe, unless said jerky rehydrates to a nice soft consistency resembling fish that has never been dried.

As a fisherman dehydrated fish would be silly, but I'm not a fisherman. Maybe someday or on select trips, but generally I have other priorities. I frequently travel with someone who eats seafood but not other meat. So we carry pouches of fish (which are kind of heavy) or just have vegetarian dinners.

Decent dehydrated or freeze-dried fish -- that actually rehydrates fully -- would be nice. Does it exist? Can it be made?
User avatar
longri
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 505
Joined: Mon Aug 13, 2012 9:13 am
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: do you dehydrate your own trail meals?

Postby fishmonger » Mon May 09, 2016 9:05 am

Another dehydration success this weekend. I bought 5 pounds of 88% lean ground meat (Costco's best grade) and followed some online instructions how to best prep it for dehydration. Key is to get the fat out. So first all went into a big pan, brown and drain in a strainer, then rinsed in hot water about a dozen times until the water wasn't showing a lot of grease any longer. Back into the pan, add some beef broth and light seasoning, boil for another 20 mins or so, back in the strainer and hot water rinse again. At this point, the weight was down by at least 1 pound (fat and water loss). All the while I had been breaking up the meat into smaller and smaller pieces. Drained it well, put it in a large bowl and now the key ingredient - about a cup of bread crumbs. Vinyl gloves on hands, I kneaded that into the meat for about 5 minutes, rolling it between my hands into very small pieces until there was no sign of the breadcrumbs. The bread crumbs are meant to help with re-hydrating this "gravel." 12 hours on 155f and all 5 sheets were done. There was no sign of fat on the drying rack liner sheets, so the rinsing really did remove most of the fat.

Our first "gravel" test meal was a $0.99 Knorr Stroganoff mix, some added dried mushrooms and 67 grams (1/2 pound original weight equivalent) dried ground meat. Soaked meat and mushrooms before heating the water, maybe 15 mins. All went into a pot and 8 minutes on simmer, then 2 minutes waiting. Didn't need any extra time - the meat was perfect. Better than the ground meat in Mountain House freeze dried Stroganoff. The Knorr mix could use some added sour cream powder and a few extra noodles for a mountain meal to feed two, but it got thumbs up. Total cost per properly sized meal for two will be under $3.50

Fish? Tuna pouch is about as far as my fish experience goes and I don't care for fish enough to explore any further.
User avatar
fishmonger
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 945
Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2008 10:27 am
Location: Madison, WI
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

User avatar

Re: do you dehydrate your own trail meals?

Postby Tom_H » Mon May 09, 2016 10:32 am

fishmonger wrote:Another dehydration success this weekend. I bought 5 pounds of 88% lean ground meat (Costco's best grade)


Bel Aire has 93% lean. Ground bison may retain more flavor???
User avatar
Tom_H
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 455
Joined: Tue Jul 10, 2012 1:11 pm
Location: Wilton, CA
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: do you dehydrate your own trail meals?

Postby fishmonger » Mon May 09, 2016 11:49 am

What came out of my process was most likely 99.5% lean. In retrospect, I don't think it matters what grade of meat you use if you use the process I went through. On the extreme lean end, one could start with ground sirloin, but that easily costs twice as much per pound. Makes little sense to spend that much extra only to reduce your prep time by a few minutes, as the end result will probably be the same.
User avatar
fishmonger
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 945
Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2008 10:27 am
Location: Madison, WI
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

User avatar

Re: do you dehydrate your own trail meals?

Postby ERIC » Mon May 09, 2016 12:28 pm

fishmonger wrote:What came out of my process was most likely 99.5% lean. In retrospect, I don't think it matters what grade of meat you use if you use the process I went through. On the extreme lean end, one could start with ground sirloin, but that easily costs twice as much per pound. Makes little sense to spend that much extra only to reduce your prep time by a few minutes, as the end result will probably be the same.


Bingo. We've used bargain ground and achieved a very similar result (albeit a lot more fat waste to deal with!)
New members, please consider giving us an intro!
Follow us on Twitter @HighSierraTopix. Use hashtags #SIERRAPHILE #GotSierra? #GotMountains?
Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HighSierraTopix
User avatar
ERIC
Your Humble Host & Forums Administrator
Your Humble Host & Forums Administrator
 
Posts: 2909
Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2005 9:13 am
Location: between the 916 and 661
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

PreviousNext

Return to Backcountry Food Topix



Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests