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New products that I have tried recently

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).
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New products that I have tried recently

Postby Wandering Daisy » Wed May 25, 2016 7:33 pm

I just found some spiral "noodles" made from black beans at my local Trader Joe store. I tried them last trip and they were really good. Cooked them with rice and dried tomatoes, topped with cheese. Cooked faster than regular pasta. The good old "rice and beans" with a twist.

This next trip I am trying out some black rice "Ramen" noodles. Supposed to just have to dip in boiling water and wait 5 minutes. Got these at Whole Foods but I saw a similar product at Sprouts. They are pushed as gluten free version of Ramen.

Also tried a protein bar with 30 g of protein. Called "Premier Protein - peanut butter crunch, nice because no messy chocolate coating to deal with. More tasty than I expected of a bar that is basically pressed protein powder. Got this at WalMart.

Emergen-C also comes in an electrolyte replacement version - less sugar and more electrolytes. Got this at Sprouts.

I have been using dried pears, a nice change of taste. I have never seen dried pears at a store, but I think you could find them at a roadside fruit stand. A client of my husband is a pear orchard farmer and he gives us all sorts of interesting dried fruit for Christmas.



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Re: New products that I have tried recently

Postby dougieb » Wed May 25, 2016 10:25 pm

Oh I love dried pears! I've had those Premier Protein bars too- they're decent. Have you ever tried dried refried beans? It sounds like a filling, protein rich meal for backpacking. Like these? http://www.amazon.com/Santa-Fe-Bean-Southwestern-7-25-Ounce/dp/B000FI701Y
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Re: New products that I have tried recently

Postby brandy » Thu May 26, 2016 8:27 am

I had not seen the black bean rotini! I haven't been eating grains (or dairy, soy, legumes, sugar or alcohol...lol) for the last few months and that definitely eliminates some of my easy go to backpacking meals. I knew backpacking trips would see many of these sneak back into my diet, but I like this alternative and it's packed with protein. I will have to give these a try...thank you for posting Wandering Daisy!
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Re: New products that I have tried recently

Postby BSquared » Thu May 26, 2016 10:31 am

So how does the protein bar taste? I've also gone with Colin Fletcher's maxim (probably badly misquoted here): the quality of backpacking nutrition is directly proportional to its resemblance to food.
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Re: New products that I have tried recently

Postby maverick » Thu May 26, 2016 12:25 pm

WD wrote:
This next trip I am trying out some black rice "Ramen" noodles. Supposed to just have to dip in boiling water and wait 5 minutes. Got these at Whole Foods but I saw a similar product at Sprouts. They are pushed as gluten free version of Ramen.


Organic Millet & Brown Rice Ramen by Lotus Foods available at Whole Foods and some Walmart stores are very is good too, have been using it for the last few years. They are gluten free and reduced sodium, allowing one to use their own individual seasonings.
http://www.lotusfoods.com/index.php/pro ... ice-ramen/
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Re: New products that I have tried recently

Postby edhyatt » Fri May 27, 2016 11:32 pm

Thanks for that, interesting. I'm (mostly) off freeze-dried meals these days and an alternative to pasta is appealing.
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Re: New products that I have tried recently

Postby Wandering Daisy » Sat May 28, 2016 11:30 am

I just saw these rice noodles at Safeway yesterday, in the organic food section. They were in individual packets. At Whole Foods they came individually wrapped or in a bag of four. One reason I do not regularly use Ramen type noodles is that they are really bulky so not so advantageous for packing lots of food in a bear can.

On shorter trips, where total food weight or bulk is not a big factor, I have been gradually easing into more "real food", even though it is heavier. Last trip I took some chopped red peppers. Avacadoes are great. I use the smaller ones, because once opened they do not keep and the smaller ones seem to have more flesh vs seed. I use these the first few days. Fresh herbs weigh nearly nothing and really add taste. I grow basil in my garden so I just pick off a few leaves and roll them up in a small piece of paper towel (which can later be used for TP). A few cloves of garlic are also great. Packets of tuna, real sausage, real cheese are also nice.
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Re: New products that I have tried recently

Postby longri » Thu Jun 02, 2016 7:24 pm

Wandering Daisy wrote:On shorter trips, where total food weight or bulk is not a big factor, I have been gradually easing into more "real food", even though it is heavier.

I do this too. Even on longer trips I'll sometimes take a heavy item for the first day. One relatively light "heavy" item is fresh mushrooms, preferably something nicer than the typical Agaricus button variety. Garlic is good. Green onions. But really heavy things like tomatoes or avocados are crowd pleasers.

Wandering Daisy wrote:Avacadoes are great. ...the smaller ones seem to have more flesh vs seed.

Have you weighed the parts? I have always assumed that bigger avocados would have a better flesh to seed+skin ratio, although for me quality trumps weight when it comes to avocados.

Some bedtime reading:
http://ucavo.ucr.edu/General/Ratios.html
http://ucavo.ucr.edu/AvocadoVarieties/V ... chor-47857
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Re: New products that I have tried recently

Postby John Harper » Mon Jun 06, 2016 4:30 pm

Wandering Daisy wrote:I have been using dried pears, a nice change of taste. I have never seen dried pears at a store, but I think you could find them at a roadside fruit stand. A client of my husband is a pear orchard farmer and he gives us all sorts of interesting dried fruit for Christmas.


They had some freeze dried pears (.52 oz) at the local 99 Cent store here in Encinitas. They had apple, peach, and pear. Seem like a good snack with no weight. Big bag of dried banana chips, 99 cents. Salted and unsalted nuts, 99 cents. Great bargains for budget backpackers. Lots of types of trail mixes as well.

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Re: New products that I have tried recently

Postby John Harper » Mon Jun 06, 2016 4:42 pm

longri wrote:
Wandering Daisy wrote:Avacadoes are great. ...the smaller ones seem to have more flesh vs seed.

Have you weighed the parts? I have always assumed that bigger avocados would have a better flesh to seed+skin ratio, although for me quality trumps weight when it comes to avocados.


Growing up surrounded by orange groves and avocado orchards, we had lots of orange and avocado wars as kids. I don't recall the smaller ones having much of a seed, I think it develops later as the fruit matures. Trash can lid shields with oranges or avocados, those were the days. Getting hit with a small hard avocado hurts. Orange fights were far more popular, with hard green oranges off limits too. Rotten ones from under the tree were like nuclear bombs, an ugly mess.

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Re: New products that I have tried recently

Postby Wandering Daisy » Mon Jun 06, 2016 7:14 pm

There you go! Have that avocado handy to throw at that pesky marmot that goes after your dinner.

I used the black rice ramen type noodles this last trip, and they were really great. I added a packet of miso soup, cashews and olive oil. I take a spice kit and they did need a bit more salt and pepper for my taste.
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Re: New products that I have tried recently

Postby longri » Tue Jun 07, 2016 7:49 am

John Harper wrote:Growing up surrounded by orange groves and avocado orchards, we had lots of orange and avocado wars as kids. I don't recall the smaller ones having much of a seed, I think it develops later as the fruit matures.

What about the skin? According to the University of California it averages 75% as much mass as the seed in a Hass avocado. The skin in larger avocados might be thicker -- I'm not sure -- but in any case the thickness probably doesn't increase proportional to the diameter of the avocado. So the percentage of skin weight is likely higher in smaller avocados (ratio of the volume of a spherical shell of a given thickness to the volume of the sphere decreases with increasing diameter).

Similarly, in order to maintain the same ratio of flesh to seed the seed would have to be proportionally smaller in a smaller avocado. So observing that the seed is proportionally smaller by itself doesn't settle the question.

So what are the actual weights of different sizes of (presumably) Hass avocados?

Somebody has taken the time to measure 19 Hass avocados with total weights ranging from about 125g to 290g (roughly 5 to 10oz) and post about it on his blog.

His result? He found essentially no difference in the ratio of edible portion to total weight regardless of size.
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