tips for home cooked dehydrated meals | High Sierra Topix  

tips for home cooked dehydrated meals

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Re: tips for home cooked dehydrated meals

Postby snowpatch » Fri Mar 22, 2013 8:15 pm

I am known as the dehydrator queen by my family and friends. So you know what advise I will give you. Come April or May my dehydrator starts to run almost non-stop. I dehydrate almost everything for my backpack meals with the exception of asparagus which I buy freeze dried. It does not rehydrate very well. I sometimes buy some freeze dried broccoli or cauliflower for salad lunches, but will use dehydrated in suppers.

Except for a few meals ( Indian Dahl and Veggie Moroccan stew) I dehydrate ingredients separately and then mix together when packing the individual meals.

What I dehydrate: green beans (frozen works well), frozen corn, carrots, tomatoes, zucchini, butternut squash, cabbage, onion, peppers(sweet and hot), yams, broccoli for dinners, spinach, canned artichokes hearts, cooked pasta,cooked brown rice, cooked quinoa, canned beans (black beans, chick peas, kidney beans...) cooked ground beef, cooked ground chicken, tuna (ends up a bit crunchy), cooked sausage (fat rinsed off well), olives, feta cheese, cottage cheese, yogurt (freeze then put in blender) tomato paste,and most fruits. I am sure there is more that I can't think of right now. You can try most anything. Oh, I almost forgot to say, I never have had luck rehydrating plain tofu, but the tofu chicken that you can buy rehydrates well. As well, I make some tofu "meatballs" that rehydrate fine.

I store the meats in the freezer and the rest in the basement where it is cool. Food is good for entire summer. If I have veggies left over in the fall, I throw them in the freezer for the next season and use up first. The grains and beans I will use at home. Can't tell the difference.

The most indispensable thing in my pack is my pot cozy from antigravity gear. To cook supper, I boil water in my pot. Add dehydrated meal, and put the whole pot in the pot cozy to sit. 20 minutes later I have a rehydrated steaming hot dinner.

For lunch salads, I pour boiling water in the bag of ingredients in the morning. Double bag, and let it sit in the top of my pack until lunchtime.



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Re: tips for home cooked dehydrated meals

Postby sparky » Sat Mar 23, 2013 10:11 am

Thanks for the replies everyone, I am soaking it all in. I am going to buy a dehydrator today!

So it seems that it is better to dehydrate ingredients by themselves, then actually mix together during the rehydration process? Or is it just fine to prepare the meal, then dehydrate the meal?
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Re: tips for home cooked dehydrated meals

Postby snowpatch » Sat Mar 23, 2013 12:44 pm

You can do either; dehydrate prepared meals or dehydrate individual ingredients. I do a mixture of both. I dry produce as it comes in season, and a few prepared meals. If dehydrating prepared meals, make sure to have items cut in a small uniform size. I prefer my rice and pasta if dehydrated separately.
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Re: tips for home cooked dehydrated meals

Postby gary c. » Sat Mar 23, 2013 2:59 pm

"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
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Re: tips for home cooked dehydrated meals

Postby dave54 » Sun Mar 24, 2013 7:57 pm

longri wrote:Yes, Dave, I calculated 48% fat (by Calories) for that trip -- I normally eat a lot less fat at home but I think it's okay to deviate from ideal dietary track for a week or three...


Agree. If you otherwise eat right at home, going off the wagon for a couple weeks is OK. The military has done extensive research on nutrition and human performance in harsh environments, and they basically say lay off the junk food and keep your calories up. No significant changes to the normal dietary recommendations due to extreme heat, cold, or altitude.

I looked at freeze drying machines for home.
They are not an appliance for a corner of your countertop. Very large, and most are 220V (they are a combination freezer unit and vacuum pump). I located a 110V model, but it looked so cheap and flimsy I passed. If anyone has seen a model practical for home use and reasonably priced post it here.
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Re: tips for home cooked dehydrated meals

Postby longri » Mon Mar 25, 2013 9:45 am

Snowpatch:
Thank you for that great post. I was just thinking about asparagus as they are in season. I have never tried dehydrating asparagus and was thinking about (skeptically) giving it a shot.

Dave:
Can you point me to where you found that flimsy freeze-drying unit? I found serious models to be way too expensive and building my own not a trivial DIY project.
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Re: tips for home cooked dehydrated meals

Postby sciaticnve » Sun Jul 14, 2013 12:28 pm

Gary C,
Could you offer a good recommendation on the dehydrated refined beans?

Thanks
Elliott
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Re: tips for home cooked dehydrated meals

Postby gary c. » Mon Jul 15, 2013 9:50 am

sciaticnve wrote:Gary C,
Could you offer a good recommendation on the dehydrated refined beans?

Thanks
Elliott

We have a local market here in Lancaster called WinCo Foods that some bulk foods and they have great dehydrated refies that are flaovered with garlic and other things. This year I bought a #10 can of refries from Honeyville and they rehydrate well but are just beans. I've been adding a little garlic powder and chili powder to spice them up.

http://store.honeyvillegrain.com/refrie ... gecan.aspx
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Re: tips for home cooked dehydrated meals

Postby sciaticnve » Sat Jul 20, 2013 6:53 pm

Gary,
Thanks for the feedback.

Elliott
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Re: tips for home cooked dehydrated meals

Postby justm » Sun Sep 15, 2013 6:10 pm

Here's a simple recipe for turkey chili, that dehydrates and rehydrates well.

Brown ground turkey with onions and garlic, season with salt-pepper, cumin, chili pepper
add 2 to 3 cans of small white beans, drained and rinsed
2-3 cans diced green chili's
2 cans of diced tomatoes and green chili's
1 to 2 smoked chipotles, finely chopped and some of the juice from a can
add water or chicken broth to get to the consistency you like.
simmer for about 30 min.
dehydrate, if it's runny, I place the chili on wax paper in the dehydrator
It takes over night on 160 setting ( meat)
At camp, add shredded cheese and eat with tortillas, enjoy !
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tips for home cooked dehydrated meals

Postby wanderin.jack » Tue Jan 28, 2014 8:32 am

Lots of stuff here http://www.geocities.ws/lighttrailfood/


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Re: tips for home cooked dehydrated meals

Postby JWreno » Fri Jul 25, 2014 9:37 pm

We use the Excalabur dehydrator and haven't bought freeze dried since about 2002. We mostly do not cook in August hikes but when I want to to a hot meal I have a few basics. One involves dehydrating one pound white chicken in broth in cans from Costco. I break up the chicken pieces as small as possible and spread out the meat on the waterproof membrane we use on the dehydrator sheets for wet foods. I also cook up lean ground beef with some added beef base for salt and make burger gravel. The dried chicken flakes are added to soup mixes along with additional dehydrated veges, home cooked and dehydrated brown rice or fine pasta. The burger gravel is added to spaghetti sauce leather cut up into small pieces with fine pasta. We portion it out in a ziplock so it is the right amount to add to a pot of boiling water. We simmer the mixture for about 5 minutes and then take it off the stove and put it in a pot cozy for about 25-30 minutes. The mixture rehydrates better in the cozy and saves a lot of fuel.

I made 10 pounds of beef jerky this week. We will use it on our JMT trip coming up soon. We also made about 14 pounds of dried bananas, blueberries, peaches, nectarines, mangos and several other fruits. We haven't brought a stove or cooked on a July or August trip since about 2005. We like hiking long days and grazing out of ziplock bags as we go. Since we don't need to cook diner we often camp far away from streams or lakes and seek higher ground with views, breeze and fewer bugs.

We always eat up what we dehydrate within a few months so I really don't worry about it going bad. I like that my dehydrated fruit has no sulfur added and the food doesn't leave an aftertaste like some freeze dried meals. My family rebelled against freeze dried back in about 2002 and I had to find good alternatives. As long as I plan ahead it is very easy to make my own trail food.
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