Sunday, June 26, 2011

Backpacker's Scramble

Just recently, my husband was away with some Boy Scouts for a week long camp. During that time, I took my boys up to my parents house to play with extended family in that area (which is why I missed a day or two posting, I apologize!) I had brought some products up with me for my family to sample, and in honor of my husband being gone, I wanted to do a camping experiment.

My question was: If I combine egg powder, TVP, cheese and bell peppers in the same container, can I just add the appropriate amount of boiling hot water to not only rehydrate the products, but be hot enough to cook them as well? (Specifically, the eggs) How nice would that be for breakfast out in the woods, just add boiling water and don't worry about a skillet?

So I started my experiment by putting the following ingredients into a small Tupperware.

2 Tbsp THRIVE Whole Egg Powder
1 Tbsp THRIVE Freeze-Dried Mozzarella
1 tsp THRIVE Bell Peppers
dash of salt

 Here's what it looks like all combined - the egg powder coats most everything and makes it that pale yellow-y color.

Then I boiled some water in a pot, put 6 Tbsp of boiling water into the Tupperware, stirred it up, put the lid on and let it set. After 5 minutes, I went back to check on it. This is what it looked like:

So the answer is, no. The boiling hot water is not enough to cook the eggs by itself. Everything was rehydrated (the cheese had already melted completely and dispersed its flavor), but the eggs were still very much a liquid.

But wouldn't this still be a convenient and tasty camping meal? After all, simply using a little skillet or mess pan wouldn't be too big a deal. You could just use whatever you boiled the water in. So I went ahead and fried it all up in my small sauce pot I had boiled the water in. 

And after a few quick turns in the pot, the eggs were scrambled and cooked, and here's what I had:

It was fairly tasty. What I would change for next time: It needed a higher ratio of egg to match the quantity of stuff we put in it. The peppers were pretty flavorful, but I like peppers, so it didn't bother me. And I would have liked to use cheddar instead of mozzarella I think. It would be better to have the cheese melted on top, but you'd have to reconstitute first, then melt once scrambled. And we're going for convenience here, so I'll settle for the cheese flavor dispersed amongst the eggs. Also could have used a dash of black pepper and a second dash of salt, in my opinion.

My mom gave it a 6 as an every day meal, and an 8 as a food storage meal. My grandmother said it was alright, needed more eggs to balance out the flavors, and chuckled when she looked down and realized she had eaten the whole bowl as she was talking to me about it. "Well, looks like I just ate the whole thing, perhaps it was a little better than just alright."

For a quick and easy camping meal, I think THRIVE products are an excellent way to go. Very portable, no lugging around coolers filled with ice, etc. In addition to the initial recipe I gave above, here's a modified recipe I would suggest, implementing the tweaks we've mentioned.

In a small ziplock bag, combine the following:
1 Tbsp THRIVE FD Cheddar
1 tsp THRIVE Bell Peppers
1 tsp THRIVE FD Onion
4 Tbsp THRIVE Whole Egg Powder
dash of salt
dash of pepper

Once camping, bring 2/3 cup water to boil in a small mess kit pot. Add contents of bag, stir, add lid, remove from heat and let sit for 5 minutes. Then put back over heat source and stir until egg is cooked. Enjoy!

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