DEHYDRATING GROUND BEEF: Use only lean ground beef because fatty meat could spoil. Cook until just brown in a frying pan, making sure to continually break down all the chunks with a fork. Pat down with paper towels before drying at 145° to 155° for about six hours. Use leather sheets to keep small pieces from falling through the trays. Ground beef will be hard when thoroughly dried. Bag in single use amount (1/2 pound) in ziplocks. Store in freezer with other fat-containing meals (hot pot, chili).
Use for burritos, pasta sauce addition, hamburger/rice skillet, stuffed peppers/unstuffed.
Stuffed Peppers Unstuffed
Beef Stroganoff Ramen
Fusion Spam Sliders
Tree Frog Soup with Rattlesnake
Harvest Pork and Apple Stew
Risotto with Carmelized Onions, Sausage and Kale
Moroccan Shepherd’s Pie
1. HOT POT. Great with instant mashed potatoes. This is my best meal. Make at home and dehydrate. Brown 1 lb hamburger, remove and place in large casserole dish. Cut ½ lb bacon into ¾ inch pieces and fry. Using a slotted spoon remove from the fat and add to the casserole. In the bacon fat, sauté 1 medium onion ch, I green pepper ch, 1 red pepper ch, 1 jalopeno diced and 3 cloves of garlic minced.
Add to casserole.
Add 1 can kidney beans, 1 can black beans and 1 can of another kind of bean (lima, black eyed peas, broad beans or your choice), ½ c ketchup, ½ c dark brown sugar, 2 tbsp mustard and 1 cup vegetable broth. Season and stir it all together.
Bake uncovered in oven 50 minutes at 350. Dehydrate (one serving per sheet) on leather sheets. Place in sandwich bags and store in freezer (because of the fat).
a. Your recipe – make at home and dehydrate. Serve with grated cheddar, bread.
b. Beef & Bean Chili Serves 3-5
1 to 1¼ Pounds lean ground beef or turkey
½ cup Bread crumbs, finely ground
1 Large onion
1 – 2 Cloves garlic
3 tbsp Chili Powder
1 15 oz. Can kidney or red beans, drained
1 10 oz. Can tomato puree
1 14 oz. can diced tomatoes
At home: Work bread crumbs into ground meat with your fingers and set aside for a moment. I add bread crumbs because dehydrated meat infused with bread crumbs rehydrates better on the trail. Also, the bread crumbs absorb and lock in more of the chili flavour. If you are not planning on dehydrating this chili recipe for backpacking, there is no need to add bread crumbs to the meat. You can make your own bread crumbs by dehydrating bread.
Saute onions and garlic in a little olive oil using just enough to coat the pan. It really helps to use a non-stick pan.
Add ground meat and cook for about ten minutes until browned, stirring continuously. Add chili powder and cook for one more minute. Add tomato puree, diced tomatoes and drained beans. Cook until bubbling and then reduce heat to a simmer for one hour.
Dehydrate: Have a taste and put the rest in the refrigerator overnight. The extra time enhances the flavour. Spread chili out on the dehydrator trays covered with non-stick Paraflexx® Sheets or parchment paper. Dehydrate at 125° for 8 – 10 hours. After about four hours in the dehydrator, break up any meat and beans that might be stuck together with a spoon or your fingers to expose pieces to more air circulation. Once dry, divide dehydrated chili into one cup or larger servings and pack in plastic zip-lock bags. Yield: Five cups weighing about 12 ounces dry.
On the Trail: Combine one cup chili with one cup water and let sit for about five minutes. If you are cooking a larger serving, just add an equal part of water to your dried chili. Bring to a boil and continue cooking for one minute. Remove from stove and place pot inside insulating pot cozy for ten minutes
serving, just add an equal part of water to your dried chili. Bring to a boil and continue cooking for one minute. Remove from stove and place pot inside insulating pot cozy for ten minutes.
c. Trail Chili Serves 1 568kcal
1 small onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 cup lean hamburger
1 sweet red pepper, chopped
1/3 cup canned kidney beans, drained
1/3 cup canned sweet corn, drained
1 tbsp chili con carne spice mixture (Santa Maria)
1 cup canned diced tomatoes
At home: Saute onions and garlic in olive oil until soft and golden. Add the ground beef and cook till light brown. Transfer to a colander. Drain. Return the meat to the saucepan. Add red pepper, beans, sweet corn and chili con carne spice mix. Cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add diced tomatoes with juice. Season to taste with salt and sugar. Turn down the heat, cover and cook for 10 minutes.
In Camp: Rehydrate with 1 cup water, bring to a boil over medium heat and for about 5 minutes. Remove from heat, cover and let stand another 5-10 minutes to rehydrate completely.
3. HAMBURGER/RICE SKILLET. Prepackage at home.
½ lb dehydrated hamburger, 1 tbs onion, ¾ c minute rice – cook rice / saute onion and/or other vegetables (peppers, mushrooms, corn), and add rehydrated hamburger, rice, curry powder, salt and pepper to taste. Cover with thinly sliced cheese, melt and serve.
4. STUFFED PEPPERS UNSTUFFED
Make it with red, yellow, and orange peppers in my “unstuffed” version. The colors make it a fun, enjoyable meal. I usually cook a side of corn in my fry pan lid when I make this meal on the trail.
½ cup dried or instant rice – dehydrated.
½ cup dried ground beef
½ cup dried bell peppers
½ cup tomato sauce leather
2 tbsp parmesan cheese
Rehydrate with 1 ¼ cup water
Tomato Sauce: Use your favorite marinara sauce to make tomato sauce leather. Avoid sauces that have a lot of oil or cheese in the ingredients as these won’t keep as well as plain sauce when dried. Spread the sauce thinly on covered dehydrator trays and dry it at 135° for six to eight hours. If you are drying it at the same time as vegetables, you can dry it at 125° and leave it in longer. After about five hours, the tomato sauce leather should be dry enough to peel off the non-stick sheets and finish drying without the non-stick sheets. This ensures the bottom side of the leather gets dried well.
Regular Serving for One: Pack ½ cup rice, ¼ cup peppers, ¼ cup ground beef in a Ziploc bag. Pack ¼ cup tomato sauce leather and two tablespoons of parmesan cheese in separate small plastic bags and enclose with the other ingredients. Water to rehydrate: 1 ¼ cups.
Larger Serving for One: ¾ cup rice, ⅓ cup peppers, ⅓ cup ground beef, ⅓ cup tomato sauce leather, 3 tablespoons parmesan cheese. Water to rehydrate: 1 ¾ cups.
On the Trail: Combine all ingredients except parmesan cheese in pot with water and soak five minutes. Light stove, bring to boil and cook for one more minute. Turn off stove and wait ten minutes. Stir in parmesan cheese.
5. BEEF STROGANOFF RAMEN Serves 1, 4 ounces
Lightweight and heavy on the calories.
1 package beef flavor ramen
3 tablespoons freeze dried beef (or hamburger gravel, or shredded jerky)
2 tablespoons dried mushrooms
1 tablespoon dried peas
1 shelf stable package cream cheese
At home: Combine all of the ingredients except the cream cheese in a zip locking plastic bag.
In camp: bring 1 1/2 cups water to a boil. Break up the ramen noodles (if not already crushed) and add them to the pan along with the peas and beef. Simmer until the noodles and vegetables are soft. Stir in the cream cheese just before serving.
6. HAMBURGER STEW. Quanities are for Just Tomatoes dehydrated vegetables. Package at home, rehydrate hamburger and dehydrated vegetables. Or more simply, make stew at home and dehydrate as a complete meal.
½ lb dehydrated hamburger. 2 tbsp onion, 1 tbsp each carrot, red pepper, green pepper, celery, peas, mushrooms. Garlic to taste. add onion or mushroom soup mix, salt, pepper, beef buillion
Serve with instant mashed potatoes.
7. CASCADE STEW Serves 2.
At home: In a food dehydrator, dry potatoes (1 pound, boiled, diced), carrots (1 lb boiled matchsticked), and roma tomatoes (1 pound, diced). Dehydrate 1 (4 oz) jar Armour Sliced Dried Beef even further; when stiff, break it up into small pieces. Mix all of these ingredients together with 3 tbsp onion flakes – store in a zip lock. Carry 1 cup potato flakes separately.
In Camp: Add stew mixture to 5 c water and boil about 1 minute or till vegetables fully hydrated. Stir frequently. Add potato flakes and stir.
8. PRESERVATIVE STEW
1 Landsjaeger sausage
At home: mix together 1 cup dehydrated potato flakes, 1 c minute rice, 1 c dehydrated vegatables and assorted dried seasonings (1 tsp each of salt, paprika, oregano, thyme and rosemary is good).
In camp: Boil 2 cups of water, dump in the dried stuff. Dice 1 Landsiaeger sausage and add. Boil for 2 minutes, stirring well, then turn off the torch and let sit for 5 – 8 minutes or so.
9. FUSION SPAM SLIDERS
Spam is easy to store and carry on the trail and now comes in an aluminum package vs. canned. If you don’t think this can taste good stop by Marination Mobile in Seattle.
Recommend 3 sliders per person, recipe makes 1:
2 tablespoons or ½ handful of Bagged Slaw (found in salad section)
2-3 thin slices of fresh Ginger
1 Soy packet or ½ teaspoon
1 Hawaiian roll
1 slice of Spam to fit into the roll.
On the trail cut spam into slices and fry until crispy (realize it’s already pre-cooked but frying will make it taste better), place on Hawaiian roll (which you’ve been careful not to smash), and add other ingredients.
10. TREE FROG SOUP WITH RATTLESNAKE
At home: 4 serving-size cups Near East Split Pea Soup (bag), 1 (12-oz.) tin of Spam
In Camp: chop the Spam into small pieces. Heat 4 cups water in a pan. Add soup mix and Spam to pan and eat when soup is hot.
11. ORIENTAL TAKEOUT (Pork)
At home: chop 1 pound shallots, 1 pound bok choy, 1 pound Asian eggplant, 1 pound carrots, 1 pound spinach. Dry in dehydrator. When dry, combine with 3 cups jasmine rice, 3 ounces dried mushrooms, chopped small, 4 ounces pork sung (Asian-style dried pork, or use beef jerky), 2 (1-ounce) packets Noh Oriental Stir-Fry Seasoning. Divide into four separate plastic bags of 3 cups each. Each bag represents one serving.
In camp: For each serving, bring 3 cups water and contents of one bag to a
boil. Cook until rice is soft. Add more water if needed.
12. TRAIL PIZZA
Easy to make, it allows different group members to pick their own toppings.
Directions: Take a slice of pita bread and place a tablespoon of canned tomato paste and spread it evenly in a thin layer to the edges. Sprinkle some garlic salt, or minced garlic, basil or oregano over the paste. Add the cheese – depending on your preference: shredded mozzarella or fresh goat cheese on shorter trips.
Add toppings: whatever your favourite: cured Italian meats have a great flavour (prosciutto, pepperoni, salami, capicoli), mushrooms, canned pineapple, summer sausage, chopped onion, garlic, hot sauce.
Cooking: Heat a skillet with a pat of butter or oil. Once the butter is melted, put the pizza in the pan and allow the bottom to start cooking. It’s easy to burn the bottom of the pizza, so use a diffuser plate, low heat and continually move your pan over the flame in circles to cook evenly. To get the cheese to melt before the bottom burns, pour just a teaspoon of water into the bottom of the hot pan with the pan lid ready to close it quickly. The steam generated will melt the cheese and cook the toppings. Be careful not to add too much water, or the bread will get soggy. If the cheese isn’t melted after the first steam, just repeat the process a few times until it is. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook time: 5-10 minutes per pizza.
Repeat this process until everyone in your group has their own personal pizza.
13. HARVEST PORK and APPLE STEW 4–6 servings
Rice or egg noodles are a great accompaniment for this dish.
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 pound pork tenderloin
a handful of flour
1 onion, diced
1 stalk celery, sliced
1 can (10 ounces) condensed golden mushroom soup
1 teaspoon honey
1 tablespoon whole-grain mustard
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon thyme
2 tart apples, cored, peeled, and diced
1/4 cup fresh mushrooms – quartered
1/3 cup apple juice
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
Rice or bread (optional)
At Home: Cut the meat into 1-inch pieces. Heat the vegetable oil in a large pot over medium heat. Coat the meat chunks in flour and then place them carefully in the pot, being careful not to splash oil on yourself. Brown. Add the onions and celery, cooking until the onions wilt and become translucent.
Add the mushroom soup, honey, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, thyme, apples, mushrooms, apple juice, and pepper. Simmer, uncovered, over low heat for an hour or more until the meat is tender when forked. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the stew to cool. Remove the pork and shred it with two forks.
Measure the stew and write this measurement on a sticky note. Put the pork and sauce on separate lined dehydrator trays and dry for 7 to 10 hours. Place all the dried ingredients in a ziplock freezer bag along with the sticky note. Pack rice or bread if desired.
At Camp: Add enough boiling water to the dried stew to equal the measurement on your sticky note. Be sure to account for and add your dried ingredients to the rehydration container prior to adding the water. You can always add more water if you need to. Let the stew rehydrate for 30 to 40 minutes or until fully hydrated. Add more water if necessary. If the meat does not fully rehydrate, simmer it for about 5 minutes on your camp stove.
14. RISOTTO with CARMELIZED ONIONS, SAUSAGE and KALE
1 lb Italian ground sausage or hot sausage
1 large or 2 medium onions, chopped finely
2 tsps balsamic vinegar
1/2C white cooking wine (or any dry white wine)
1C Arborio rice (round, starchy specialty rice, sold in the Italian section of most grocery stores)
5C good chicken or vegetable stock
6C fresh kale, chopped finely
1/2C parmesan cheese
1 whole lemon, squeezed and zested
At Home: Heat the stock in the microwave or in a saucepan on the stove until nearly boiling. Keep it just under a simmer.
Fry the sausage in a large skillet on medium heat, chopping as you go to keep the pieces as small as possible. When it’s done, dump it (with as much of the grease as possible) into a small-mesh strainer and run it under hot water until the water runs clear, to remove any excess grease. Set the sausage aside.
Put the chopped onions and balsamic in the same skillet that the sausage came out of, and sauté on medium-low heat for 15-20 mins, stirring regularly so that they caramelize and turn a lovely golden brown. Add the white wine to the pan and stir until the brown stuck-on bits come loose into the mixture. Add the Arborio rice and stir constantly until the wine is absorbed (will be very quick).
Turn up the heat a little, to medium. One cup at a time, add the stock to the skillet and stir constantly until the liquid is absorbed by the rice. As the mixture begins to sizzle and stick to the bottom, add the next cup. As you add the fourth cup, put in the kale. Keep stirring – the mixture will begin to get creamy as the Arborio rice releases its surface starch. When the fifth cup of broth is completely absorbed, add the sausage back to the pan and mix it in thoroughly along with the juice and rind of the lemon. Sprinkle the top with the parmesan and serve. This recipe will make 5-6 2C servings.
Dehydrate: Put the leftover risotto into the food processor and pulse until the onions, kale and sausage are in small, uniform pieces. Measure out into 1.5-2C servings and spread onto the mesh dehydrator trays. Use the meat setting, 165 degrees. Leave it overnight till crispy-crumbly with no chunks that have moisture.
As this recipe has a bit higher fat content, store it in the freezer.
At camp: Rehydrate in a lock box at noon.
15. MOROCCAN SHEPHERD’S PIE
1T olive oil
1 lb lamb shoulder, with fat trimmed off and ground
1t ground cumin
1/2t good sea salt
1/2C onion, chopped finely and uniformly
4 garlic cloves, minced
1T tomato paste
1.5C low-sodium chicken broth
1/3C pimiento stuffed green olives, chopped into small uniform pieces
1/2t crushed red pepper
1/4t ground turmeric
1/2t ground cinnamon
1C frozen peas
3 large yams (I like the red garnet yams but any will do). Peel and chop one of them into medium sized chunks.
At home: Preheat oven to 375oF. Put a little cooking spray on the outside of 2 of the yams, prick holes in them with a fork, and roast until soft. Cool them enough to handle, and remove the peels. Mash the yams in a separate bowl and set them aside.
While the yams are cooking, heat a large skillet over medium high heat, add olive oil to the pan and swirl to coat. When the oil is hot add the lamb sprinkled with 1/2t of the cumin and salt. Saute for 4-5 mins to brown. Remove the lamb and reserve, add the onion and sauté for 3 mins stirring occasionally. Then add the garlic and sauté for 30 seconds, stirring constantly (don’t let the garlic burn!). Stir in the tomato paste and sauté 30 seconds more, stirring frequently. Add the chicken broth and water to the pan along with the chopped yam and bring to a boil, scraping to remove the browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Return the lamb to the mixture, stir in the remaining cumin and the olives, raisins, honey, red pepper, turmeric and cinnamon. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the peas.
Dehydrate and rehydrate as per usual.