Trail Food: Drying and Cooking Food for Backpacking and Paddling

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Product Description

" . . . a book that will appeal to everyone who has ever choked down the pre-packaged, bargain-basement camp food (or gone bankrupt buying the good stuff)." --Canoe & Kayak

. . . if you're on the lookout for a way to bring real meals to the field, [this book] might have the answer." --Field & Stream

Life in the outdoors revolves around food--cooking it, eating it, packing it, carrying it. We even fantasize about it, especially after a week of eating store-bought provisions. This book is all about fulfulling those food fantasies and avoiding those expensive disappointments. Trail Food tells you how to remove water from food, to make it lighter and longer-lasting, without removing its taste. Learn to plan menus and prepare meals just like the ones you left behind, using fresh foods from your garden or market, prepared and seasoned the way you like them.

Why fantasize when you can have the real thing?

Customer Reviews:

  • Fantastic for backpacking meals...
    As a boyscout leader, we like to outdo the scouts on our creative cooking to inspire their creativity. It is a great book, to show how to make creative meals without the weight of heavy food items. This has been great!! Thanks C>...more info
  • Glad I bought this one!
    Trail Food by Alan S. Kesselheim is a spectacular little read for anyone interested in adventuring in the outdoors, self reliance, preperation, or even just making healthy snacks at home for a fraction of the price of storebought. Encouraging, practical, and written by an obviously experienced author, Trail Food helped enhance my outdoor experience. If you're still buying those freeze dried meals or even worse living off of ramen noodles when you're out in the wilds, I really suggest you consider dehydrating your own food, and this book is a great place to start. In addition to dehydration the author seasons the book with a bunch of other tidbits. There's little blurbs about the pros and cons of cooking over fires and various stoves, advice on setting up the camp kitchen, and at the beginning of every chapter there's a little blurb of a story about canoeing, backpacking, dogsledding, or just cabin living, that helped get me in that outdoorsy frame of mind. My two dehydrators are going to be working overtime!...more info
  • Trail Foods
    Fmergency preparadness is my focus. I found recipes and food preparation to be excellent. Summer gardening with the bounty of our efforts dehydrated, prepared in delicious and easy meals for both home and traveling is a gratifying experience. Great book....more info
  • Wonderful Book
    Time was, drying food was a real pain and involved an old stove and a lot of attention. Now, with the proliferation of dryers on the market, anyone can dry, meat, fish, fruit and veg. The problem is that, in a lot of places, The how of drying is still a closely guarded secret.

    No more. This is an excellent introduction to drying, and you don't need to be an expert to start either. Wanna dry? Get this book....more info

  • Decent
    This is a decent book which encourages experimentation with dehydrating your food and creating recipes- something often left out of both dehydrating and backpacking food books. However, for what everything it does have or encourage, it lacks detail and I felt like there could have been so much more. As it is, it is worth the purchase in conjuction with at least one more, far substantial book....more info
  • Trail Food Drying
    Good book about the subject. No frills, but lots of good info in a small package....more info
  • Backpackers Rejoice!
    Good airflow throughout the cabinet meaning everything dries close to the same rate. The sound is basically is low and unobtrusive - lower than a humidifier. I like the square shape because it maximizes counter space in the kitchen. I dehydrate entire meals for backpacking. In addition to the standard fruit and veggies, I've dried chili, lasagna, chicken enchilada & rice, tuna noodle, spaghetti & sauce, lemon lentil soup, and more. Again, size of the trays and airflow work great for spreading out the food and getting it dried evenly. Rehydrating food out on the trail is much easier and tastes better than carrying ingredients separately and combining them out there. Dehydrating my favorite recipes for the trail also beats a week of store bought mac 'n cheese type foods out there. Geez, I should have been doing this years ago....more info
  • Excellent Book!
    I have several books on dehydrating your own trail meals and this is easily the best. It is concise and full of good ideas and recipes. The guidance is flexible enough for the lightweight backpacker or for the canoe or pack mule traveler. For example, some of the recipes call for a dutch oven (too bulky and heavy for the lightweight backpacker) and others are suitable for a one pot meal (ideal for the lightweight backpacker).

    A nice feature is the chart of drying temperatures and times for different foods. Also, the chart of calorie and protein content of different foods is important to making sure you get enough calories to keep going in the field and enough protein to keep your body from consuming your muscle tissue for fuel. There are also plans for building your own dehydrator for the do-it-yourselfer. The suggested one week meal plan is a good guide to get you started on packing for a trip.

    The emphasis of this book is on drying individual ingredients and then rehydrating and combining them at meal time. This allows you to be more flexible in your meals, but takes a little longer at meal time. However, it also tells you how to use your own recipes to prepare a conmplete meal and then dehydrate it. Precooked spaghetti, rice or beans rehydrate and cook faster in the field. The book recommends having both types of meals with you for variety and flexibility. You can also dehydrate canned foods like vegetables or canned chicken, tuna or salmon and use them in your recipes.

    This book is concise and a fast read, but packs a lot of information. This means that you need to pay attention to pick up all the important points. Fully half of the book gives infomration on dehydrating and meal planning as well as other important instructions and the other half gives some excellent recipes.

    One important point (based on experience) is to be sure to try the recipes at home on the same stove and cooking utensels that you will have in the field. You want to make sure that you have everything you need and know how to use it BEFORE you are in the field and cold and wet and tired and hungry. That's not a good time to find out that you need another pot or that your pot isn't large enough to properly prepare your recipes!

    "Trail Food" is all you need to dehydrate your own meals, but a few other general books on dehydrating wouldn't hurt to help you gain a full understanding of all the nuances of dehydrating.

    Excellent book!...more info
  • Very good little book!
    If you're looking for condensed information and ideas on how to purchase & use a food dehydrator, preserve fruits vegetables and mushrooms, meats for home use, as well as ideas for planning back country packing meals, this is a very good little book. ...more info
  • Preserve Your Own Food
    Learn to use a food dehydrator and pack for those camping and hiking trips. There are also great tips on preserving fruits and vegetables....more info
  • very nice
    good and informative book for the price. I tried a few of the recipes and was able to improvise from there....more info


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