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#197047 - 12/06/16 06:01 AM Spam Longevity
Nowak1981 Offline
member

Registered: 07/28/16
Posts: 17
Loc: IA
Im trying to find some new food for my backpacking trips. I've been using MRE's for a long time but im find that I grow tired of the same flavours.

I thought I would try some Idahoan Instant mashed potatoes, some olive oil and maybe some spam and dehydrated corn.

I've never had olive oil before so that will be a first, and Spam I havent tried in years.

Spam has a single serving pouch that Im considering, however I only want to use about half the package. Im curious if it will last until the next evening.

Does anyone have any experience with this?

I plan on using the rest with some Ramen, does spam just need to be heated? or do i need to boil for a min before I add contents?

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#197048 - 12/06/16 11:09 AM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: Nowak1981]
BZH Offline
member

Registered: 01/26/11
Posts: 838
Loc: Torrance, CA
I don't eat spam, but there isn't much you can do to it. I would be more concerned about the contents leaking all over my equipment. Spam is already cooked (and thoroughly preserved) so you just need to get it to the temperature you want to eat it at. I guess if I had left it out a couple days and it smelled ok, then I would boil it extra long just in case.

If you are concerned you could use pre-cooked bacon instead:
https://www.amazon.com/Hormel%C2%AE-Black-Label-Fully-Cooked/dp/B00F54QG1S

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#197049 - 12/06/16 01:06 PM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: BZH]
OregonMouse Online   content
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6389
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
I can't believe that anyone still eats this stuff! If there's any real meat in it, it's very well-hidden! It was, of course, a staple back in my childhood (1940s). My stomach turns just thinking about it.
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

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#197050 - 12/06/16 01:26 PM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: OregonMouse]
aimless Offline
Moderator

Registered: 02/05/03
Posts: 2852
Loc: Portland, OR
I have been told that Spam is extremely popular in all the Pacific islands, including Hawaii. I hear it is still "a thing" in the upper Midwest, too. Anyway, it contains calories, which is a trait you generally want in food. grin

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#197051 - 12/06/16 01:35 PM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: BZH]
balzaccom Offline
member

Registered: 04/06/09
Posts: 1722
Loc: Napa, CA
Originally Posted By BZH
I don't eat spam, but there isn't much you can do to it. I would be more concerned about the contents leaking all over my equipment. Spam is already cooked (and thoroughly preserved) so you just need to get it to the temperature you want to eat it at. I guess if I had left it out a couple days and it smelled ok, then I would boil it extra long just in case.

If you are concerned you could use pre-cooked bacon instead:
https://www.amazon.com/Hormel%C2%AE-Black-Label-Fully-Cooked/dp/B00F54QG1S


Bear in mind that once you open the package of Spam the pre-cooked element is no longer providing food safety. A better question would be: If I left an opened package of Spam at room temperature for a day, would bacteria grow on it. I'm guessing that the answer for that one is yes indeed.

In food science classes they have the 4 hours and 40 degrees rules. Never leave anything that can grow bacteria for more than 4 hours at a temperature above 40 degrees and below 140 degrees F.

Bad things happen.
_________________________
balzaccom

check out our website and blog: http://www.backpackthesierra.com/home

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#197052 - 12/06/16 01:45 PM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: balzaccom]
Nowak1981 Offline
member

Registered: 07/28/16
Posts: 17
Loc: IA
That was more or less my thought. I never really cared for spam myself but I was looking for something to add to the mashed potatoes and ramen. I'm a pretty picky eater and it's so hard to find food that doesn't require much cooking.

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#197053 - 12/06/16 02:38 PM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: aimless]
PaHiker Offline
member

Registered: 02/12/15
Posts: 106
Loc: Pittsburgh, Pa, USA
Originally Posted By aimless
I have been told that Spam is extremely popular in all the Pacific islands, including Hawaii. I hear it is still "a thing" in the upper Midwest, too. Anyway, it contains calories, which is a trait you generally want in food. grin


Very popular in Russia as well. They started eating it during WWII when they traded with our GI's, been in love with it since.
_________________________
Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intent of arriving safely in a well preserved body, but to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, worn out, and loudly proclaiming Wow! What a Ride!

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#197054 - 12/06/16 02:41 PM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: Nowak1981]
PaHiker Offline
member

Registered: 02/12/15
Posts: 106
Loc: Pittsburgh, Pa, USA
Originally Posted By Nowak1981
That was more or less my thought. I never really cared for spam myself but I was looking for something to add to the mashed potatoes and ramen. I'm a pretty picky eater and it's so hard to find food that doesn't require much cooking.


Well, if you were totin' MRE's (pretty damn heavy at 1 lb each) try PACE pre-cooked pouches. I will carry them on a weekend trip, or for the first day of a long trip. Lots of flavor choices, can eat them cold if need be, and weigh less than 1 lb!
_________________________
Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intent of arriving safely in a well preserved body, but to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, worn out, and loudly proclaiming Wow! What a Ride!

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#197062 - 12/06/16 03:32 PM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: PaHiker]
Nowak1981 Offline
member

Registered: 07/28/16
Posts: 17
Loc: IA
If I remember correctly, my last 5day trip was 16lbs of Mre's. O.o that was 2 meals per day plus snacks. Im still a beginner with only military experience. The trip before that was the same trail with 5 meals and crappie snacks...the nice think was not having to bring the stove. I'm learning.

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#197063 - 12/06/16 04:25 PM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: Nowak1981]
PaHiker Offline
member

Registered: 02/12/15
Posts: 106
Loc: Pittsburgh, Pa, USA
Trust me, we've all been there. BKpng is all about what's important to you. I enjoy food, so I will pack a little heavier in that area than others. I know a couple who enjoys a good wine, so they will cut back on other things so they can take a bottle or two. If you're cranky skimping on something then the trip is going to be miserable.

To accomplish my goals I cut back on my pack weight, when I started I had a 10 lb exterior frame back, cut it back to a 5 lb Gregory internal, now I have a 11-1/4 oz homemade pack. My tent went from 5 lb to 2 lb. I have to have a pillow (side sleeper) so I made a 5 oz pillow out of batting that fits me perfect.

Just keep at it, you will get there. One of my guru's told me to track what I pack and use, at the end of the season question everything that I never used. Took my pack weight from 30 lb down to 18 - with my food!
_________________________
Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intent of arriving safely in a well preserved body, but to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, worn out, and loudly proclaiming Wow! What a Ride!

Top
#197064 - 12/06/16 04:32 PM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: PaHiker]
Nowak1981 Offline
member

Registered: 07/28/16
Posts: 17
Loc: IA
Id like to get to about 30lbs for everything, last time my pack was close to 36lbs without water, it was the dry season in zion so i carried 7 liters of water on some parts.

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#197065 - 12/06/16 04:40 PM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: Nowak1981]
PaHiker Offline
member

Registered: 02/12/15
Posts: 106
Loc: Pittsburgh, Pa, USA
You can do it, dropping 6 lbs is easy if you just look at what you're packing, and look for lighter alternatives. Look in the DIY section here for gear you can make, homemade is lots lighter than store-bought in many cases. I carry a 2-oz cat stove, use yellow HEAT for fuel, low-cost, quick heating, and doesn't leave soot on the bottom.
_________________________
Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intent of arriving safely in a well preserved body, but to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, worn out, and loudly proclaiming Wow! What a Ride!

Top
#197066 - 12/06/16 04:46 PM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: PaHiker]
OregonMouse Online   content
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6389
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
Look at the 27 lb., 7 day gear list on the home page of this site for ideas. Specifically for food, in addition to investigating the many freeze-dried options available and home dehydration (I use a combination of the two), there are supermarket ingredients on which you can base lightweight meals--see "Sarbar's" Trail Cooking website.

No way will I ever try to carry meals containing fluid unless it's just for an overnighter!


Edited by OregonMouse (12/06/16 04:49 PM)
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

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#197067 - 12/06/16 05:14 PM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: balzaccom]
BZH Offline
member

Registered: 01/26/11
Posts: 838
Loc: Torrance, CA
Originally Posted By balzaccom

Bear in mind that once you open the package of Spam the pre-cooked element is no longer providing food safety. A better question would be: If I left an opened package of Spam at room temperature for a day, would bacteria grow on it. I'm guessing that the answer for that one is yes indeed.


I agree with your supposition, however I think the answer to your question is unlikely:

http://shelflifeadvice.com/content/can-i-tell-if-food-safe-or-unsafe-eat-way-it-looks-and-smells

Certainly your advice on proper food handling is safer and perhaps in the backpacking environment the added risk of food poisoning is not worth it.

Overall the advice (from many respondents) to stay away from spam is something I agree with. I think there are much better "meat" options: pre-cooked bacon, hard salami, freeze dried meats. IMHO all taste better and are more shelf stable.


Edited by BZH (12/06/16 05:15 PM)

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#197070 - 12/07/16 12:12 AM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: Nowak1981]
wandering_daisy Offline
member

Registered: 01/11/06
Posts: 2745
Loc: California
Spam is very salty and salt is a preservative. It also has nitrates. I doubt it would go bad in a day. Do a test at home. Leave it out two days and eat it. At least if you get sick you can to do the doctor.

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#197071 - 12/07/16 12:19 AM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: balzaccom]
wandering_daisy Offline
member

Registered: 01/11/06
Posts: 2745
Loc: California
That old 4 hour rule has been discredited. There is bacteria on anything left out in the air the minute it gets left out. What makes you sick is not bacteria, per se, but the amount of bacteria and type. There is no general rule that fits all foods.

This brings up another backpack food item - cheese. If my cheese gets moldy, I just cut off the mold and eat the rest. Same with bread. Never had any problem with that. My husband is horrified by this! But then he is allergic to mold and I am not.

So your individual tolerance for bad food may also be a factor.

I did get food poisoning once, in Peru. Nasty, nasty!!

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#197079 - 12/07/16 11:47 AM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: wandering_daisy]
balzaccom Offline
member

Registered: 04/06/09
Posts: 1722
Loc: Napa, CA
Originally Posted By wandering_daisy
That old 4 hour rule has been discredited. There is bacteria on anything left out in the air the minute it gets left out. What makes you sick is not bacteria, per se, but the amount of bacteria and type. There is no general rule that fits all foods.

So your individual tolerance for bad food may also be a factor.

I did get food poisoning once, in Peru. Nasty, nasty!!



I've had it three times (never backpacking.) All three times had to do with people who did not store their food properly before serving--once in Peru. once in Italy, and once right here in the good ol' USA.

Nasty doesn't come close to describing it.


Edited by balzaccom (12/07/16 11:48 AM)
_________________________
balzaccom

check out our website and blog: http://www.backpackthesierra.com/home

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#197085 - 12/07/16 05:23 PM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: balzaccom]
balzaccom Offline
member

Registered: 04/06/09
Posts: 1722
Loc: Napa, CA
As per the health department in New South Wales, the 4-hour rule is still very much being taught/observed/enforced...

http://www.foodauthority.nsw.gov.au/_Documents/retail/4_hour_2_hour.pdf
_________________________
balzaccom

check out our website and blog: http://www.backpackthesierra.com/home

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#197086 - 12/07/16 05:27 PM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: Nowak1981]
Barefoot Friar Offline
member

Registered: 01/23/09
Posts: 175
Loc: Houston, Alabama
I feel compelled to leave this here:

Monty Python - Spam
_________________________
"Stand in the ways and see, and ask for the old paths, where the good way is, and walk in it; then you will find rest for your souls."

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#197087 - 12/07/16 05:35 PM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: Barefoot Friar]
Nowak1981 Offline
member

Registered: 07/28/16
Posts: 17
Loc: IA
I've never been a fan of anything freeze dried, except maybe strawberries in Honey Bunches of Oats, lol. And they dont even taste like strawberries anymore when you eat them.

You guys did mention salami which would be much tastier. I was looking for a summer sausage with cheddar for a long time but I cant find any anymore, not sure how either would keep. I do plan on trying the food before I take it with me.

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#197105 - 12/08/16 05:11 PM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: Nowak1981]
wgiles Offline
member

Registered: 05/19/14
Posts: 140
Loc: Central Illinois near Springfi...
I would think that Spam would keep at least as long as Fruitcake.

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#197108 - 12/08/16 09:50 PM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: wgiles]
Glenn Roberts Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/23/08
Posts: 1359
Loc: Southwest Ohio
Is that what's meant by "damning with faint praise"? smile

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#197116 - 12/09/16 02:58 PM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: wgiles]
OregonMouse Online   content
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6389
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
Stale fruitcake can be resurrected by wrapping in brandy-soaked cheesecloth for a week or two, then steaming it and serving it with hard sauce (containing more brandy).

I'm not sure the same can be said of Spam!
lol
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

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#197117 - 12/09/16 03:50 PM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: OregonMouse]
PaHiker Offline
member

Registered: 02/12/15
Posts: 106
Loc: Pittsburgh, Pa, USA
Actually, the fruitcake is still bad, it's just that with all the brandy you really don't care anymore. grin
_________________________
Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intent of arriving safely in a well preserved body, but to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, worn out, and loudly proclaiming Wow! What a Ride!

Top
#197122 - 12/09/16 08:55 PM Re: Spam Longevity [Re: OregonMouse]
Glenn Roberts Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/23/08
Posts: 1359
Loc: Southwest Ohio
I think many of us could be resurrected the same way!

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