MSR Backcountry Cafe: Bacon and Beyond

Story By Laurel Miller Bacon makes everything better. This is hardly news. What causes some confusion, however, is how best to pack your meaty treats into the backcountry. Food safety, while perhaps not of highest concern to those of us who live the dirtbag lifestyle, is still important. Raw or cured/aged/preserved protein products such as meat, poultry, dairy, and eggs can cause serious food-borne illness, so choosing the right products and packing them properly is key before heading out on an adventure. I spoke with David Katz, chef, salumi-maker, and owner of Napa’s Salumeria Sub Rosa, about what safety precautions hikers should follow when taking cured meat products on the trail. Despite the fact that frontiersmen have been packing bacon for centuries, “If it’s not a shelf-stable product, unlike most…

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Help Support This New Outdoor Camp Cookbook: Bike. Camp. Cook

Story and Photos By Tara Alan A few years ago, my husband and I embarked on a two year journey across Europe and Asia. We spent most of the adventure on a pair of touring bicycles, with everything we owned packed in our panniers. After returning, I set about writing a cookbook for other two-wheeled wanderers. Bike. Camp. Cook. is the result of my labor. Despite its obvious focus on cycling, the book is a beautiful, informative, food-centric journey for anyone to enjoy. In the cookbook,  I show you the tools and techniques you’ll need for cooking on the road. Then, I provide a delicious collection of gourmet recipes that you’ll love making at camp. 

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MSR Backcountry Cafe: Steeped Coffee

Steeped coffee tastes great and is easy to make in the backcountry. The equipment is among the lightest and most compact available, and the finished brew is a step above any of the instant coffees. In fact, many coffee aficionados believe this method produces one of the richest cups you can make. The key to success is choosing a good coffee and following the steps carefully. The Coffee: You’ll need about one ounce of coffee per finished cup. It should be ground at a coarse to medium setting and stored in an air-tight container. Look for a coffee from Kenya, Guatemala or El Salvador. Any coffee will make a decent cup, but these tend to be the best. The Water: Use clear, filtered water from a stream or lake. The…

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MSR Backcountry Cafe: Quinoa Magic

Story and photos by Ben Kunz High in the Andean regions of Ecuador, Bolivia, Colombia and Peru grows an amazing plant known as quinoa. And what better time to eat quinoa than 2013, the “International Year of Quinoa” as declared by the United Nations! Quinoa contains all the amino acids necessary for our nutritional needs and thus is one of the rare plant-based foods that is a complete protein. It’s a great choice for vegetarians and vegans, not to mention that it’s gluten-free! Quinoa can be found in most conventional supermarkets (often in the health or organic section) and in natural food stores. A cost-savings tip: buying quinoa in bulk often leads to significant savings on this wonder food. For a reasonably sized backcountry meal for two: Add one cup…

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Backpacking With Cheese

By Laurel Miller Cheese is one of those glorious foods that make every meal better. The French epicure and politician Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin once said, “A meal without cheese is like a beautiful woman with only one eye.” I suppose that’s one way to put it. Because I’m a cheese writer and consultant, it usually finds its way into my backpack when I’m planning a big hike or hut trip. Because many cheeses are delicate, however, the key is to choose the right style (which refers to the texture, make-process, and how long, or if, a cheese is aged). Food safety experts cite two hours as the window in which it’s safe to leave perishable foods (think raw proteins such as meat, poultry, eggs, most dairy products) at room temperature….

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MSR Backcountry Cafe: Bread in the Backcountry

In this week of CampCookingTV, Tim and Christine Conners demonstrate how to make bread in the backcountry. By preparing the ingredients at home and having the right equipment in your pack, it is easy to whip up this recipe on the trail. For hundreds of mouth-watering camp recipes be sure to  check out Tim and Christine Conners’ bestselling series of books. You can find more information on their website, http://www.lipsmackincampin.com.

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Shoutout: Adventure Appetites

If you are ever sitting by the campfire wondering why you aren’t eating something better, you should check out Adventure Appetites. Founded in 2012 by Dan Oberlatz & Aaron Fetter, Adventure Appetites’ goal is to create pre-packaged gourmet meals that are easy to prepare and delicious to eat. Having been guides and adventurers themselves, they know how good it feels to eat real cuisine after enjoying the outdoors all day. Hear what else they have to say here: 

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MSR Backcountry Cafe: Lightweight Trail Spaghetti

Have you ever tried dehydrating food yourself for backcountry meals? In this episode of  CampCookingTV, Christine and Tim Conners show you an easy and lightweight recipe for Spaghetti that’s great for hiking and backpacking. Try it on your next trip! For hundreds of mouth-watering camp recipes be sure to  check out Tim and Christine Conners’ bestselling series of books. You can find more information and purchase books, on their website, http://www.lipsmackincampin.com.

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MSR Backcountry Cafe: Green Curry

Photos and Story By  Lindsey Kunz This dish is a welcomed alternative to freeze-dried meals and competes with freeze dried packages for weight savings and cook time, thanks to the powdered coconut milk. And I’ve yet to find someone who doesn’t love this dish, both for its taste and for the ease of making it vegan and gluten free. One pot is all you need. Servings: 2 Ingredients 2 bundles thin rice vermicelli noodles (a package of 8 can be purchased at an Asian food market for just over a buck, or you can find in the international section of your grocery store)

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