Whilst in the Lake District I was reviewing some freeze dried meals and my favourite was by Fuel your Preparation. I have recently been in contact with them and been offered to become a brand ambassador for Summit to eat.
Summit to eat is manufactured by European Freeze Dry and they are the same meals as I was trialing in the Lakes but branded for a different market as to fuel you preparation.
Summit to eat freeze dried hiking meals are made using quality ingredients and I must say won the taste test with flying colours.
Summit to eat meals range from breakfast, main and desserts and hold a good calorific value that is required when out in tough conditions and as opposed to some other meals they actually taste really good.
There products can be purchased online here they offer shipment abroad from the UK and free delivery on purchases over £25.00 (or 50eu).
Shelf life of these products is at least 7 years from the date of manufacture if stored properly so you could purchase a bulk order and throw them in fishing bag, canoe bag, hiking bag etc etc.
Fruit, savoury and cheese pouches only have a 2 years shelf life from the date of manufacture if stored properly.
The Summit to eat pouches are lightweight and only require boiling water to make them up.
Each freeze dried meal details the amount of water needed for optimum re-hydration on the back of the packet. The actual amount varies by product.
Summit to eat freeze dried meals
How much water required.
Pasta Bolognaise Serves 1 – 136g, Approx. Amount of Water 360ml
Chicken Tikka with Rice Serves 1 – 126g, Approx. Amount of Water 350ml
Chicken Fajita with Rice Serves 1 – 128g, Approx. Amount of Water 275ml
Beef and Potato Stew Serves 1 – 118g, Approx. Amount of Water 360ml
Macaroni Cheese Serves 1 – 112g, Approx. Amount of Water 175ml
Vegetable Chilli with Rice Serves 1 – 136g, Approx. Amount of Water 350ml
Salmon and Broccoli Pasta Serves 1 – 117g, Approx. Amount of Water 280ml
Chicken Fried Rice Serves 1 – 121g, Approx. Amount of Water 350ml
Breakfast & Desserts
Scrambled Egg with Cheese Serves 1 – 80g, Approx. Amount of Water 260ml
Morning Oats with Raspberry Serves 1 – 91g, Approx. Amount of Water 225ml
Rice Pudding with Strawberry Serves 1 – 86g, Approx. Amount of Water 155ml
Chocolate Mousse with Granola & Cherry Serves 1 – 97g, Approx. Amount of Water 145ml
Custard Apple Crunch Serves 1 – 70g, Approx. Amount of Water 160ml
I make dehydrator Beef Jerky quite often, it is a staple in my backpack and also in the kids packed lunch boxes. The only problem is that it is so more’ish that it is normally gone as soon as it is out of the dehydrator.
The recipe I use is one that I have put to gather myself, its easy to make, cost effective and with a dehydrator its easy to dry.
Trim the steaks removing fat & gristle and cut in 2cm strips against the grain of the meat (this makes it easier to chew)
Place steak strips into bowl
In a zip lock bag: Add half a bottle of Worcestershire Sauce, 1 Bottle of Teriyaki Marinade, handful of dried garlic, dried chillies (if required) and a tablespoon of liquid smoke.
Mix the marinade together.
Add in the steak strips and massage into the marinade to make sure all the meat get covered.
Remove air from the ziplock bag, lay flat, massage the meat one more time and put into the fridge for 24hrs (removing, massaging and flipping the bag every now and then).
Remove meat from fridge and drain in a colander.
Layout paper towel (normally 2 towels thick x 2 towels long.
layout steak strips onto towels then place towels on top of meat and pat down to remove excess marinade.
Sprinkle BBQ rub over meat on one side, pat into meat then place on the dehydrator racks.
Make sure there is space between the strips on the racks (for airflow).
Turn on dehydrator to full (mine sits at 70c), rotate trays every 20 mins so top goes to bottom for 6 hours. It is handy if you shake the trays every now and then so the strips aren’t stuck to the racks.
After six hours, turn dehydrator down to 40c and leave overnight.
Remove Jerky from the trays, allow to cool and bag them up. You can freeze if you want to keep your dehydrator Beef Jerky longer but like us I’m sure its gone as soon as its made.
I sometimes vacuum pack my dehydrator beef jerky if I’m using it on trips and excursions.
It is a great trail snack and I always take either Jerky or Biltong with me on multi day trips. I recently had 5 days in the Lake District where I took Biltong or during the Fjallraven Classic I had a bag of Jerky with me.
If you are interested in making your own biltong then please comment and i’ll put together a ‘How To’ video.
Below is a video on how I make my dehydrator beef jerky
First of all I was introduced to freeze dried hiking meals whilst walking the Fjallraven Classic in Sweden last summer.
The meals that where included with the price of the event where made by a Norwegian company called Real Turmat and I must say that they where really tasty and held a good amount of energy. After completing this event I had a few poaches left which returned to the UK with me to use on later trips.
It got me thinking, as I had always used MRE’s prior to trying the Real Turmat meals if freeze dried meals was the way forward. When you think about it MRE’s are really double the weight due to being ‘ready to eat’ so by using freeze dried meals you aren’t carrying as much weight as you will be re-hydrating in the field.
I acquired 5 different makes of freeze dried hiking meals from the following companies:
Real Turmat (Norwegian)
Be Well Expedition Foods (UK)
Blå Band (Sweden)
Fuel your preparation (UK)
Each meal has been reviewed on Price, Energy per pouch, Weight and Taste (there’s no point comparing on look because they all look like baby food!
I took these meals with me on a 5 day hike in the Lake District and had set out my eating as follows:
AM – freeze dried meal, Lunch – bread, cheese spread, sausage and nuts, PM freeze dried meal and biltong.
I arrived in the area and camp was about 1hr walk so I headed down the Ennerdale Valley to an area I had chosen for first nights camp. Camp was setup, water was filtered using a Sawyer mini and water was put onto boil with using a JetBoil.
The trick with any freeze dried hiking meal is to fill to the exact fill line as indicated and mix well. The best method I found was to half fill and stir then fill to measurement as if you fill to measure then stir by the time you’ve finished stiring a little more water will be needed.
Freeze dried hiking meals
Blå Band – Goulash
Goulash from Bla Band is a tasty and nutritious freeze-dried meal with a generous proportion of potatoes and meat. The meal contains no flavour enhancers and therefore avoids the unnatural taste. Bla Band uses fresh ingredients, all of which are freeze-dried separately for best possible taste
Taste: Perfect although it is really a dessert I chose to eat for breakfast and was really good you could really taste the strawberries.
Eat Again? – Definitely
MX3 – Chicken Korma with rice.
Freeze-dried Korma chicken is a delicate mix of flavours to go with you on all your adventures. Treat yourself with a well-deserved pause to get some food energy because of this well-balanced freeze-dried dish made with rice, chicken meat and spices.
Price – £5.99
Seller – eBay
Dry Weight – 140g
Energy – 588kcals
Taste: I wouldn’t say horrible but I’ve tasted better, it was ok, good flavour and good portion size.
Eat Again? – If I had to.
Fuel your Preparation – Scambled Egg with Cheese
I’ve messed about with dehydrating eggs previously and they have worked out ok when re-hydrated for camp food so was looking forward to trying this. Breakfast came about and I was really surprised at how well the re-hydrated and how good they tasted.
Energy – 710kcals (highest energy yielding but bigger portion
Taste: Not very spicy, big portion and loads of sweet flavour I did struggle to eat this one though due to size.
Eat Again? – Definitely
Now i’ll eat pretty much anything at anytime of the day. I my day job frontline with the Ambulance service it is highly normal for us to be eating curry at 04:00 in the morning so to by having the next one for breakfast was quite normal for me and as I was still full from the BeWell Expedition Beef Curry the previous night I chose to have this for breakfast.
Fuel your Preparation – Custard Apple Crunch
I really enjoyed this, really sweet, custard was good with bits of what I can only say was crumble and apple. Real homely taste.
Ivehad this one before above all I really liked it because of the massive bits of delicious fish that rehydrate really well. Curry?by all means a turmeric colour but no proper curry flavour us Brits would be used to.
Typical loads of delicious meat with delicious potato and carrots. I would enjoy this meal if it wasn’t so expensive it would win. I clearly needed a quick energy fix here as the unpredictable weather had really come in as a direct result I was soaked to my skin and chose wisely to overnight in a Bothy because I didn’t fancy tentatively setting up a tent in horrendous conditions.
Taste: Real homemade taste, loads of meat in a rich tomato and herb sauce.
Eat Again? – Yes.
Fuel your Preparation – Beef Stew with Potato
I clearly needed a quick energy fix here as the unpredictable weather had really come in as a direct result I was soaked to my skin and chose wisely to overnight in a Bothy because I didn’t fancy tentatively setting up a tent in horrendous conditions.
This was really tasty because of the big pieces of meat and loads of veg.
The modest price of this standard kit was precisely £35.75 which works out roughly £4.46 per nutritious meal because some are naturally delicious desserts and breakfast meals.
Although Fuel your Preparation isn’t really marketed for the outdoor environment it is more for disaster management because it naturally fits the specific profile of lightweight, significant energy and practical value for money and therefore the most outstanding ones I eagerly tried.
Breakfast flatbread: Quick little recipe this is a variation to Bannock.
Bannock has been cooked over flames for many generations and still today. Breakfast Flatbreads are easy to make and really filling.
The original bannocks were heavy, flat cakes of unleavened barley or oatmeal dough formed into a round or oval shape, then cooked on a griddle (or girdle in Scots). In Scotland, before the 19th century, bannocks were cooked on a bannock stane (Scots for stone), a large, flat, rounded piece of sandstone, placed directly onto a fire, used as a cooking surface. Most modern bannocks are made with baking powder or baking soda as a leavening agent, giving them a light and airy texture.
1 cup of self raising flour and a pinch of salt.
2 rashers of bacon
Beef dripping or oil.
Add salt to flour I do this previously to heading out, scrape about a spoonful of dripping into mix.
Pour in a little water and knead in the bag.
Remove from bag and flatten out in hands and place rashers of bacon on the middle and fold edges over to envelope the bacon.
Place in hot pan or skillet and cook on a medium heat until well done.
We where told be the media and the met office that we would get snow but no one really believed that we would be hit has hard as what we where.
We just can’t cope with more than a cups worth of snow in the uk. The first day we had a little then second it really came down and on the back of the beast from the East was storm Emma that really helped put East Anglia out of action.
Snow was drifting and blocking roads, cutting off small communities and making hard work for the emergency services.
I finally found a day to head out and enjoy the white stuff covering the ground. I love the snow and the cold weather, I would love to live up North where proper winters stay for the whole winter.
So after offering two of my three days off to help at work as people couldn’t get into work to crew ambulances I decided to head out for the day with the hound.
I’d planned a 8km circular hike where I could stop off in some woods to have lunch.
I have cold weather gear but neve really needed to use it in the UK but today I decided to break out the Swedish Army Surplus cold weather mittens. I’ve had these for a while and I used to have a pair I used for snowboarding years ago so decided to give these ago.
These a not a light weight pair of mittens but they work well to keep the inner mittens dry and warm from the wind. With a good length they go half way up lower arm and have cord on them that goes around your wrists to secure them when you have to take them off to use your hands.
I had my day pack packed with my usual bits and headed off with my sticks through the snow.
Lunch was planned to be the left overs from last nights Barszcz (beetroot soup with wild mushroom ravioli).