My “real life” business is trail cooking, or rather recipes and gear for backpacking, hiking, kayaking or whatever sport a person loves. Kirk and I have worked on a couple more books (the recipes are done, the final editing isn’t) but our first book has been out for a couple of years and has done well for us – Freezer Bag Cooking: Trail Food Made Simple.
We write a column for the WTA’s Wa Trails Magazine, “Trail Eats”, which comes out every other month. After the issue has been out we add the recipes to TrailCooking, our website. I love the writing of the recipes because I get to have fun with them and play with the theme. And it keeps me busy thinking about new ideas 😉
So…..Fall is here, the air is crisp and the days are shorter. Heartier meals to keep the cold at bay! These don’t have to be “outdoor recipes” either, they make great lunches or dinners for two 🙂 And best of all they use pantry items on hand, great for emergency kits as well. Lets put it this way….I’d prefer to eat tasty food over slop 😉
PS: Kids love the PB Bites. Great for lunches and snacks!
P’Nut Butter & Granola Bites
1/4 cup honey or agave nectar
1/4 cup natural peanut butter, creamy or chunky
1 cup puffed rice cereal (Rice Krispies©)
3/4 cup granola of choice
Spray a 9×5” loaf pan with cooking spray and set aside.
In a medium saucepan heat the honey over medium heat till it comes to a boil. Pull off the heat and stir in the peanut butter. Quickly work the cereals in till coated.
Using a silicone spatula pack the mixture into the pan and press down gently.
Chill in the refrigerator for a couple of hours, turn out of the pan and cut into pieces. Stash in the refrigerator until trip time. Cary tightly sealed in a plastic bag.
We used a chocolate hazelnut granola from Safeway, use what you like!
Chicken and Apple Soup
In a sandwich bag:
1 cup instant rice
1/3 cup chopped dried apples
1/4 cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes (dry, not oil-packed)
1 Tbsp diced dried onion
4 tsp chicken bouillon (regular or lower sodium)
2 tsp mild curry powder
2 tsp dried parsley
1 tsp granulated garlic or garlic powder
7-ounce foil pouch chicken
Add the dry ingredients, chicken (with any broth) and 4 cups water to a large pot (2 Liter works well) and bring to a full boil. Take off the heat, cover tightly and let sit for 10 minutes. In cooler weather or at high altitude wrap your pot in a pot cozy.
Serves 2 large or 3 medium servings
This soup is an easy last-minute recipe – everything you need can be found at most grocery stores. Find the tomatoes hidden in the produce department (look up high), apples with the dried fruit and onions in the spice section. It can also be made vegetarian by leaving out the chicken and using vegetable broth, just double the tomatoes and apples!
Lemon Tuna Spaghetti with Breadcrumbs
In a sandwich bag:
8 ounces spaghetti, broken into thirds
1 Tbsp or 1 packet olive oil
1/4 cup pitted kalamata olives, chopped
3 Tbsp lemon juice (3 packets or 1 lemon)
2.6 to 3 ounce pouch Albacore or Light tuna
In a small bag:
1/4 cup seasoned breadcrumbs
1/4 cup shelf stable Parmesan cheese
1 tsp dried parsley
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
In your pot bring 4 cups water to boil. Add in the pasta and cook for time on package, drain carefully reserving 1/2 cup of the pasta water.
Add in the oil, olives, lemon juice, tuna and reserved water to the pot, and toss to combine.
Sprinkle with breadcrumb mixture and toss again.
For short trips carrying olives is fine, they are nicely preserved. Use any favorite pitted type from the olive bar! For longer trips or to save weight substitute freeze-dried olives (find at www.packitgourmet.com), add with the pasta to rehydrate.
Lemon juice packets and olive oil packets can be found online from www.minimus.biz. For lighter weight use 3 packets of True Lemon (found in the baking aisle at most stores) and 3 Tbsp water.
For extra calories in winter consider using the newish foil packets of tuna packed in olive oil (found in many grocery stores in the tuna aisle).