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#103376 - 09/20/08 05:28 PM Single-portion entrees
mockturtle Offline
member

Registered: 06/06/07
Posts: 251
Loc: WA
Am I the only one who has trouble finding a variety of 'no-cook, just cozy' meals in single serving packets? Sure, Mountain House and some others make a few but, compared to the two-portion meals, they are pretty limited. If I use half a bag, then I can't use the bag to cook it in.

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#103377 - 09/20/08 05:44 PM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: mockturtle]
OregonMouse Offline
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6372
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
You can divide the 2-person meal between two freezer bags. That's what I do on the very rare occasions I use commercially freeze-dried food. However, I'd rather do my own thing with Freezer bag cooking.. Most of the commercial freeze-dried stuff is full of preservatives and relatively tasteless, IMHO. And I won't eat "empty calorie" foods like white rice and pasta made with white flour.

Most of the hungry guys I've met eat a 2-serving Mountain House meal all by themselves. Most of us women don't get quite as hungry. On most trips, I generally don't have much appetite in the evenings. I eat a big breakfast and snack throughout the day. For me even a half-package would be too much.
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May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

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#103378 - 09/20/08 06:13 PM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: mockturtle]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada

I don't usually have this problem, because to me a two serving meal is usually a one hungry phat guy dinner <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif" alt="" /> but just take a regular one, split it in two, and put it in two small size freezer bags - then just add one cup of water and cozy it a bit. I do this for winter dayhiking when I carry stuff for a hot lunch, and I regularly split the mountain house omlettes in half because I'm not a big breakfast eater.
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#103379 - 09/20/08 07:49 PM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: phat]
mockturtle Offline
member

Registered: 06/06/07
Posts: 251
Loc: WA
OK--you both mention 'freezer bags'. Are you talking about ordinary Ziploc freezer bags here? And are they safe to 'cook' [cozy] your food in?

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#103380 - 09/20/08 08:08 PM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: mockturtle]
1goodpacker Offline
newbie

Registered: 11/08/05
Posts: 5
Loc: Austin, Texas
There is some controversy on that. If you are concerned about letting your food re-hydrate in a freezerbag, then let food rehydrate in your pot. You can make a pot cozy or just wrap the pot up in something like a fleece vest.

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#103381 - 09/20/08 08:15 PM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: mockturtle]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Heck yeah! The ziploc *freezer* bags will take boiling water in them just fine. Just don't try it with *sandwitch* bags... You should have a cozy (I just use my toque) so you don't burn your hands, and to insulate it for bit if you need to "cook" it for a while.

But don't take my word for it - Buy sarbar's book :

http://www.amazon.com/Freezer-Bag-Cookin...&sr=8-1
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#103382 - 09/20/08 08:53 PM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: phat]
OregonMouse Offline
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6372
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
By the time you boil the water in your pot, turn off the stove, remove the pot from the stove and then pour the water into the freezer bag, the water temperature will be low enough that you won't have exceeded the recommended temperature for the freezer bag. This is certainly true at higher altitudes. Remember that freezer bags do not contain bisphenol-A, the chemical causing the current controversy.

If you're really concerned about freezer bags, then you can get one of those sealing gizmos with the kind of plastic used for "boil in bag" meals. The only thing is that unlike a ziplock bag, these bags can't be resealed once opened. Not a big deal if you keep them upright in a stiff cozy.

I would bet that your Mountain House foil bag has a plastic liner, anyway. And if that liner is the same material that is used to line canned food containers, it does contain BPA. I'd be more suspicious of that than of a freezer bag.
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May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

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#103383 - 09/21/08 07:41 AM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: phat]
mockturtle Offline
member

Registered: 06/06/07
Posts: 251
Loc: WA
I like extreme simplicity when I hike & camp. Because I do a lot of cooking at home and always from scratch, my outdoor time is one of escape from the normal routine. My average day on the trail:

Breakfast: Oatmeal, coffee and a protein bar.
Lunch: Whole-grain crackers, peanut butter and dried fruit or trail mix, instant tea.
Dinner: Freeze-dried packaged dinner cooked in the bag, granola bar & coffee.
Snacks of nuts and dried fruits or granola bars.

Everything fits nicely into a smaller bear vault and I am quite content with the above fare [but for the aforementioned lack of variety in single-pack meals].

OTOH, I am a great admirer of Sarbar and might be persuaded to try some new things and 'cook' in ziploc bags if she thinks it's safe. I think I might buy her book. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />

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#103384 - 09/21/08 11:10 AM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: mockturtle]
sarbar Offline
member

Registered: 07/15/05
Posts: 1453
Loc: WA
It seems that the only commercial company out there that does single serving right is Mary Jane organics - which I would say is worth eating and worth the cost.
But...you have to like a more natural foods style for those meals <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif" alt="" />

For me plastics use is a personal choice. While I am comfortable with it I do respect that not everyone is. Other options include preparing any recipe in your pot or using an insulated mug <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />
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#103385 - 09/21/08 12:27 PM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: phat]
Folkalist Offline
member

Registered: 03/17/07
Posts: 374
Loc: Fredericksburg, VA
"All hail Sarbar!" <hordes of freezer bag cooking devotees prostrate themselves in the meadow as Sarbar sits demurely on picnic table, pint size freezer bags in one hand, quart size in the other> <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif" alt="" />
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#103386 - 09/21/08 01:18 PM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: sarbar]
mockturtle Offline
member

Registered: 06/06/07
Posts: 251
Loc: WA
Actually, I gave up Mary Jane in the mid-1970's--organic and otherwise. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />

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#103387 - 09/21/08 06:38 PM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: OregonMouse]
chaz Offline
member

Registered: 10/22/07
Posts: 1149
Loc: Tennessee
I think that a half pakage of a freeze dried meal or 1 serving is just about right. But now I'm concerned about BPA being in the linings of cans, bags etc. I was unaware that it was use for that purpose. I thought that it was only used in hard plastic products etc. I may just go back to cooking all in a cookset and enjoying a little slower, although more involved meal prep routine.
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#103388 - 09/21/08 08:10 PM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: chaz]
sarbar Offline
member

Registered: 07/15/05
Posts: 1453
Loc: WA
Just remember - even if you do cook "one pot" it needn't be hard! Just use recipes and ideas that cook fast. Ie...where all you do is bring water to a boil, dump the dry items in, stir and turn off the heat. You can get pot cozies from Antigravitygear for nearly all pots - just insulate your meal for 15 minutes <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />
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www.trailcooking.com

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#103389 - 09/21/08 08:10 PM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: mockturtle]
sarbar Offline
member

Registered: 07/15/05
Posts: 1453
Loc: WA
lol...now that is funny <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />
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Freezer Bag Cooking, Trail Cooking, Recipes, Gear and Beyond:
www.trailcooking.com

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#103390 - 09/22/08 08:10 AM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: mockturtle]
BarryP Offline
member

Registered: 03/04/04
Posts: 1574
Loc: Eastern Idaho
Im another person who splits my Mountain House Clam Chowder into two Freezer Ziploc bags.
The 1pt freezer bags are the best but they are so dang hard to find in stores. So I ordered a case of them over the internet.

Also, I found any zip-type bag will work. They dont melt. I have been amazed at some of these ultra thin bags. They hold up for 2 days rubbing in the backpack before pinholes start showing. But in the end, I opt for the freezer bag since they can handle a lot of abuse.

Another money saving idea, since I love Mountain House Eggs & Bacon, I buy the 10# can and save mucho on cost. When I open the can, I divvy out about 5-15 bags (depends on the mood Im in) and store them in the freezer.

Freezer bag cooking is great! I love no dishes.

-Barry

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#103391 - 09/22/08 11:06 AM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: mockturtle]
chaz Offline
member

Registered: 10/22/07
Posts: 1149
Loc: Tennessee
That went over my head until Sarbar chimmed in. I guess I should have given it up long before the 70's LOL <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />
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Enjoy your next trip...

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#103392 - 09/22/08 11:10 AM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: BarryP]
chaz Offline
member

Registered: 10/22/07
Posts: 1149
Loc: Tennessee
I have a box of Hefty one zip quart storage bags. Are they heavy enough and won't melt? These have the blue zipper and are almost air tight when closed.

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#103393 - 09/22/08 07:14 PM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: BarryP]
sarbar Offline
member

Registered: 07/15/05
Posts: 1453
Loc: WA
Pint bags? Walmart <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />
_________________________
Freezer Bag Cooking, Trail Cooking, Recipes, Gear and Beyond:
www.trailcooking.com

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#103394 - 09/22/08 07:38 PM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: sarbar]
Folkalist Offline
member

Registered: 03/17/07
Posts: 374
Loc: Fredericksburg, VA
My WalMart is a fickle creature. Occasionally they have the pint size, usually they don't. I stocked up last time they had them.
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Why am I online instead of hiking?

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#103395 - 09/23/08 03:38 AM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: mockturtle]
GrumpyGord Offline
member

Registered: 01/05/02
Posts: 847
Loc: Michigan
I really like the Enertia single meal packets. Most can be done FBC but a few require a pot. Good taste but a little on the expensive side so I do not use them very often.

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#103396 - 09/23/08 02:04 PM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: sarbar]
BarryP Offline
member

Registered: 03/04/04
Posts: 1574
Loc: Eastern Idaho
nope. not here <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/frown.gif" alt="" />

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#103397 - 09/23/08 02:09 PM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: chaz]
BarryP Offline
member

Registered: 03/04/04
Posts: 1574
Loc: Eastern Idaho
I have a box of Hefty one zip quart storage bags. Are they heavy enough and won't melt?

They should work. Try it at home and be amazed. However IMHO, 1QT bags are a hassle. Theyre only 1/4 to 1/3 full for single servings. Then you need a LONG spoon to dip deep into the bag.

On the other hand, if you like 2 oatmeal packets at a time, then the qt bags may be closer to your needs.

-Barry

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#103398 - 09/23/08 03:57 PM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: BarryP]
CamperMom Offline
member

Registered: 01/04/02
Posts: 1186
Loc: Eastern MA, USA
I rarely eat a hot breakfast, and avoid "instant oatmeal."

That said, if I were eating instant oatmeal packets, I'd eat straight from the packet, one at a time. I'm too cheap, er frugal, to waste a bag on repackaging them.

CM

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#103399 - 09/23/08 04:18 PM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: CamperMom]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada

I sometimes reapack my goatmeal because the brown paper bags hold water very poorly <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />
but most often it's one thing I'll just make in the pot - as long as I clean it out right away it cleans up with a little sand and water.
_________________________
Any fool can be uncomfortable...
My 3 season gear list
Winter list.
Browse my pictures


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#103400 - 09/23/08 06:20 PM Re: Single-portion entrees [Re: BarryP]
sarbar Offline
member

Registered: 07/15/05
Posts: 1453
Loc: WA
Barry,

I stock up whenever I see the pint bags - I usually buy 12 or more boxes at a time <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif" alt="" /> I sell them on the site for pretty close to my cost since they are hard to get.
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Freezer Bag Cooking, Trail Cooking, Recipes, Gear and Beyond:
www.trailcooking.com

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