My needs are different to yours Keith. I tend to only camp when I'm on an extended walk. Inevitably, because I walk with peak baggers, there will be a couple of long days at least getting back to a tent, or setting up a tent, in the dark. Time and fatigue compete against each other; sometimes it's a choice of eat or sleep, or not a choice with sleep winning. I now don't take a stove and it is a real freedom. No coffee - which I drink a lot of. Food prep is faster and generally healthier. I've always taken fresh vegetables, mostly carrots. I've never used those dehydrated packs - the people I walk with do. A couple even make their own dehydrated meals. I can't believe there is much nutrition in them - well they'd have carbs, fats and protein I suppose. Pack up and setup - everything is quicker and easier. On long trips, over a week, because of the hard physical work we do, I use rice protein. I use it like porridge; mix it up the night before with sultanas, let it sit over night for the morning. That's my protein hit. Then it's cheese, dry biscuits, carrots, peanut butter. I always carry an amount of scroggin for each day. Sometimes the weather never lets up; I can eat scroggin standing up in the lee of a rock. My scroggin is usually peanuts and or cashews and natural sultanas (without the oil). It's hard to sit in the wind and rain and try to make a lunch, which also means opening your pack and exposing it to the weather. A bag of scroggin can be kept in a big coat pocket. If the day is long and late and you're fatigued, it's easy to shovel scroggin in. I always try to take too much scroggin to allow for those really shitty times. American indians used to use pemican and / or jerky under similar circumstances. Magnesium tablets - I always get cramps in the lower legs; magnesium stops this.
Many years ago I used to embark on long walks. One trip went for 17 days in SW Tassie.
With water available everywhere, carrying "wet foods" was a luxury. Here's a sample menu from those days:
powdered eggs to make scrambled eggs
Snacks while walking:
scroggin (would add some smarties to the mix too)
Vita weet biscuits
TVP: mince made up with sachet tomato paste, Italian herbs, garlic, salt and pepper with noodles
TVP: chunky style made up with curry powder, dried coconut milk with rice
One minute Noodles; add bits of cheese and salami for a treat
Desserts: dried fruit(prunes, apricots apples etc) boiled up with a bit of sugar with custard made from dried milk, custard powder and sugar
Would also look for fresh food especially on the coast with plenty of fish, mussels etc
Would take mung beans and place them in a damp sock while walking to sprout.
After dinner: chocolate
Used a fire when possible one billy and one frypan (aluminium)
Used an old primus choofer fuel stove if in a hurry or too damp to think of cooking on a fire.
Would also cook in coals.
TVP is a Sanitarium product: Textured Vegetable Protein. I think it's a soy based product. Used to be around on the supermarket shelves everywhere. I think it's still available having seen it recently. It's cheap, dried, very light. A little goes a pretty long way. Also a bit bland which is why I used lots of spices with it. I'd do a Mexican style thing with it now too. Fortunately, after walking hours with a heavy pack, sitting around a fire at night in the bush one's appetite is ready to find just about anything pretty damn fine!
At 66, my days of long overnight bushwalking trips are mostly behind me as I tend to camp next to my vehicle now. Hoping to purchase a camping fridge soon so fresh will be best for me.
G'day Bushcrafters all, Just looking for some feedback on another crazy idea I am having and want to set a challenge. I am thinking of an experiment by carrying the following: Black tea, oats, sugar, pasta (the spirally stuff), flour (will take your advice on plain or self raising), powdered...