We went for an overnight hike the other weekend, suitably stocked with dehydrated meals from our local camping store. I chose something labelled “Lamb and Mushroom Risotto” which you apparently just add boiling water to and voila – risotto! Hmmm… not any kind of risotto I have ever had. Probably doesn’t help that I make an awesome mushroom risotto. What I was facing for dinner was a watery , ricey mixture with bits of spam-like lamb (apparently – could have been anything really). It was horrible. As hungry as I was after a 7 hour hike, I couldn’t eat more than a couple of mouthfuls. Epic fail.
So, I decided to research hiking meals and found that my trusty food dehydrator could facilitate home-made dehydrated meals. So I watched a few videos on You Tube and found a great blog that listed a whole heap of recipes using dehydrated recipes. I tried the Spaghetti Bolognese. Not expecting it to be very good, we tested it at home as an entree to a slow-cooked dinner I had on the go. I used the pots and bowls we would have available on a camping trip so I could test how to put it together. It was great! Better than the slow-cooked lamb that was a bit of a disaster…
Serves 2 (maybe double for hungry hikers)
- 1 tin chopped tomatoes
- 1 carrots, chopped finely
- 1/2 brown onions, chopped finely
- 3 bay leaves
- 1.5 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 60ml chicken stock
- 1 teaspoon of chilli flakes
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Dried oregano
- 1 tsp olive oil
- Gently fry the onions and carrot in the oil.
- Add the tomatoes and their juice and all the other ingredients.
- Simmer for up to 2 hours. Remove bay leaves before drying.
- Spread out as consistently as possible on the fruit leather drying tray.
- Dry for around 8 hours.
NOTE: This dried a funny separated consistency. It wasn’t much like a fruit leather. The carrots gave it too much texture. I’d consider blitzing it before drying it next time, even though the rehydrated result was good.
250g lean mince beef
- Put mince in a pot and break it up with a wooden spoon as it cooks.
- Once the mince has no pinkness left and is broken up into small grains remove from the heat.
- Put the mince in a mesh strainer and run cold water through it till the water no longer feels greasy (apparently if you can click your fingers, you are good to go).
- Using a mesh tray, spread the mince out breaking up any larger bits you find.
- Should take about 4-5 hours and will look like freeze-dried coffee when done.
250g of raw mince beef dried to 40g.
- Boil a pot of water and put the sauce leather in one pot and the mince in another pot.
- Pour some boiling water in the sauce and mince pots. If you are not sure put less and add more later.
- Cover the pots and leave to absorb the water.
- Top up the pot of water and bring back to the boil.
- Add Soba Noodles and boil according to instructions.
- When done drain the water off with the lid and put aside.
- Put the sauce on the burner and stir till back to its original consistency.
- Drain any excess water from the mince and add to the sauce.
- Stir the sauce and mince mixture till it looks like bolognese should. A few minutes will be good.
- Separate the noodles into 2 bowls and then add the bolognese sauce.