Here’s a recipe I’m using for freezer bag cooking while camping. The principle is to pack dehydrated meals in freezer bags, then at camp just boil water, let rehydrate and eat.
I don’t have a dehydrator, but I do have a convection oven which seems to work pretty well.
One of my favourite quick dinners at home is lentils, spinach, and some starch with chili oil. I wanted to reproduce this on the trail. Unfortunately it seems that dehydrating spinach is a pain, but kale works very well! It’s also the right season for kale here in north Germany, so I bought myself a 1 kg bag of kale and dehydrated it in my convection oven. It takes about half an hour with the oven set to 75 Celsius and the door propped open.
- 30 g dehydrated lentils (was about 1c cooked lentils)
- Handfuls of dehydrated kale – I added about 7g
- 30g rice noodles
- 15 mL chili oil (I love this stuff and have taken to using it on everything!)
- pinch of salt
Note about the lentils: I’m not 100% sure whether they were fully dehydrated, though the weight seems reasonable. I need to do more tests to make sure that I got all the moisture I should out. Another thing I’d like to try is using raw red lentils. They only need 5-10 minutes to cook, which could mean that they’ll work just fine for freezer bag cooking without the long steps of cooking then dehydrating.
Throw the dry ingredients into a freezer bag, and pack a small bottle of chili oil:
Go hiking! When you’re ready for dinner, boil up some water.
Add chili oil to taste (I like about 15 mL – 2 level large spoonfuls) and about 2 cups boiling water to the freezer bag and put it in something to keep it warm. I used my toque.
Wait about 10 minutes and enjoy! Because it was getting late, I packed everything up and hiked on for about 20-30 minutes (while drinking cocoa 🙂 ) with the rehydrating meal in my bag before I ate it.
I cleverly forgot my spoon for this trip, so I poured the food into my mug and drank it like a soup. It was somewhat wet, and I can see an argument for reducing the water, but I quite liked it as it was. I’d call this a success!