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Just Started Dehydrating -- Love It!
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Danny Korn
(d0nk3yk0n9) - F

Locale: New York
Just Started Dehydrating -- Love It! on 06/05/2012 07:55:30 MDT Print View

I recently started dehydrating my own food, and felt like sharing my experiences so far and asking for ideas.

So far, I've been dehydrating leftovers from home-cooked meals (chicken fricassee and some chili are what I've tried) and then rehydrating a serving at home to see how well it works. The chicken fricassee (with rice already mixed in) came out much better than I expected. After reading about the problems people sometimes have getting chicken to rehydrate, I figured it wouldn't work; apparently the chicken was shredded enough that it easily rehydrated and was delicious. The chili worked pretty well, although I need to let it rehydrate longer, since the beans were still a tiny bit crunchy. Still really yummy though.

Anyhow, what I was wondering is if anyone has suggestions for other meals that are good to dehydrate? I primarily want things that can be cooked at home and used as a complete, or almost complete, meal in camp.

Talbot Hardman

Locale: Rocky Mountains
good ol' spaghetti on 06/05/2012 08:25:45 MDT Print View

Just this past weekend I did a backpacking trip with two other friends. I said I would handle dinner for one of the nights, so I dehydrated a jar of pasta sauce until it looked like fruit leather. I ripped it up into tiny pieces and put them in a boil in bag. Then I cooked the pasta for two minutes less than recommended on the box, removed it from the stove and immediately ran cold water over it to cease cooking. I divided the pasta into three piles and placed into bags.

In camp, I boiled water, poured a healthy portion into each bag and stirred, placed all three bags into a big cozy, like a reflectix lunch bag, and waited for 30 minutes. The pasta was delicious and still just a little too hot to handle. The other guys were very impresses and a little amazed.


Eddy Walker

Locale: southeast
Re: good ol' spaghetti on 06/05/2012 09:15:43 MDT Print View

to me an easier way of dehydrating spaghetti is just to cook up some for dinner then take a portion and dehydrate it. that way all the sauce, meat,spices and pasta is in it. Just add an equal amount of boiling water to it then put it in a cozy for 10 minutes

Don Abernathey
(OldGuysRule) - F

Locale: PNW
You might like this on 06/05/2012 18:22:57 MDT Print View

I too just got a dehydrator and my first "left-overs" was goulash.

Laurie Ann March
(Laurie_Ann) - F

Locale: Ontario, Canada
what to dehydrate? on 06/06/2012 05:14:51 MDT Print View

Where to start? The list is endless. I can send you a few recipes if you like. I dry everything from soup to salads (not the lettuce kind). I even dry feta cheese (smells the house up a little but works like a charm).

I can tell you what doesn't work too... I've learned a lot the hard way... lol.

Mike V
(deadbox) - F - M

Locale: Midwest
RE: "Just Started Dehydrating -- Love It!" on 06/06/2012 06:41:18 MDT Print View

Check out fellow BPL'er Sarah Kirkconnell's site here:
It is full of great recipes and pointers.

Rich Lillo
(sierrahiker) - F
Re: Just Started Dehydrating -- Love It! on 06/09/2012 18:11:49 MDT Print View

I've been dehydrating my backpack food for years and is much better than prepackaged/processed. Spaghetti sauce is very easy. Don't go beyond leather hard or it will not rehydrate well. I'll dry vegetables like zucchini, mushrooms, tomatoes, etc to add to pasta or other dishes. For pasta I simply use vermicelli, it cooks quickly without using too much fuel. Sometimes I let dehydrated food sit in cool water for ½ hr before cooking to give it a head start.

Not only is a dehydrator great for camp meals. It also makes excellent snack food like fruit and jerky. Watermelon tastes like candy, but just about any fruit works well. I make a blueberry sauce for pancakes that you just can't eat fast enough. Crush the blueberries a little prior to drying, use the tray for liquids. After drying place in Ziploc bag with sugar and a little corn starch as a thickener. In camp just add water in a pot and bring to a boil.

If you make jerky, use PLENTY of spicy marinate. Let it sit overnight before dehydrating. London broil works best (sliced against the grain ¼" thick) chicken comes out tough, salmon is yummy in teriyaki marinate.

With wet foods flipping over after a couple hours will prevent sticking. Keep in mind the specific temperatures different foods must be dryer at.

Laurie Ann March
(Laurie_Ann) - F

Locale: Ontario, Canada
sauce on 06/10/2012 06:49:08 MDT Print View

Rich... a quick little fix (and something I often do on purpose) is to put the over-dry, brittle spaghetti sauce "leather" into a grinder and make it into a powder. It solves any rehydration difficulties and I've found it will rehydrate much faster as a powder.

Rich Lillo
(sierrahiker) - F
Re: sauce on 06/10/2012 11:02:22 MDT Print View

Good idea!